Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Writer Wednesday: Miranda Oh

Some people you connect with because they have some deep insights that can change your life. Then there’s the people who can do this while still being cheeky as can be and having a ton of fun with what they write and HOW they write it. Miranda Oh is not your typical odd duck, she’s cheeky, sassy, confident, talented, determined, and fun AF. She’s not the type of person to avoid conflict in favor of the easy road and would rather put the car in 4 wheel drive and turn up the music.

Hell, here’s her bio on Twitter: "Buckle up & enjoy, let me take u on a journey thru moments of inappropriate laughter, a twisted sense of humor, and a dirty loud bitchy inner voice!" If this is the type of person you’d like to know, read below

1. Greetings and salutations Miranda of the Oh. Thanks for joining us here and to let people get to know the OH you, tell us, who is Miranda and why is it a good idea to check your work out?

Hey J.D. Thank-you so much for having me, I am OH so excited to be here and super duper thrilled to dive head first into this adventure you have planned for us. First things first, the title says it all; Chin Up Tits Out - it don't matter who you are, just pick up the book and give it a read. Even if you don't read, I suggest it! Why? Because; if nothing more, you will be left with 4 simple words, and 2 small actions, that can make an enormous impact on our lives; if we let it. Secondly, if you like sipping a particular beverage while reading; I encourage it. This twisted snarky and absurdly ridiculous story gets even better when you be sipping on a bevvy. Lastly, there is sex, drugs, and African jungles; who isn't intrigued by those topics?

2. OK (Or is it Oh-K?), Chin up tits out is not only the title of your novel, but sounds like your life mantra. What can you tell us about your book and the title behind it?

Oh-K, oh-k, oh-k; listen up everyone, let's remove our minds from the gutter, and process the two small actions of lifting our chin, and extending through your chest (a classy way of saying chin up and tits out).This stemmed from a saying my mom used to tell me when I was a little girl; "chin up chest out, show confidence and be confident". Over time, hormones set in, and attitudes came out. It evolved into me bucking for a compliment from my mum and my mom annoyingly rolled her eyes and chuckled out; "You know you are gorgeous, chin up tits out and have a blast". I didn't intend that to turn into a tag line or the title of my series, or a way of living, but over the years, it naturally evolved into this life motto. The idea behind actually doing the chin up tits out action is that it makes you look confident on the outside. If you keep doing that, even if you aren't confident on the inside; that eventually with pratice, and dedication to that choice; everything will work itself out perfectly how it is meant to be. My books follow a spicy young women diving head first into life, going after whatever she believes in, even when the universe is working against her at every turn. Watch Hadley get knocked down by rediculousness, then pick her self up, dust herself off, and dive in head first again, determined, almost too stubborn. She is someone our own inner voices may relate to. You know, the one that you would never speak with out loud. Sometimes it is extreme and sometimes it's bitchy, you know... there is something going on in there right now, as you're reading this. That Voice - she embodies our inner voice; and it is a riot!


3. I have some friends from Manitoba and I’ve heard it described MANY ways, but many people note it for the extremes in its weather. How has the weather of your home town impacted who and how you are?

J.D. Next time you go to Puetro Rico, please take me with you! I hate the cold, but I love my home more! Manitoba is one of the friendliest places I've ever been. Random strangers will smile and say hi for no reason. And yes, I am one of them! I LOVE waving to people when they let me into traffic. I ask the drive-thru people how their day is before I order because it makes me happy to put a smile on someone's face. It feels good in my soul. The weather makes us nice to one another. Picture this, it's minus 30 celcius, your car dies on the highway, at night, and you can still count on the first person driving by that they will stop, pull over, and check in on you. The cold also makes us resilient to harsh extremes, changes, and diversity. We're a unique bunch of really cool people, and the more I travel, the more I realize that. Every time I come home, I love this place a little more (Although; I do require at least a week during the winter season on a beach somewhere hot, no judgement, I need a week off of being 'nice' and 'resilient' , just kidding.)

4. What are your writer plans for the next 3 years?

My plan as a writer and a speaker is to share my words with the world. I want to continue to help people lead happier healthier lives through a motto, and through a sense of self-love, self-respect, and a little bit of twisted humour. I don't write non-fiction, how-to books, or anything of the sort. I write like I am your best friend, who is about to sit you down and tell you their crazy ass twisted story over a bottle of wine... or two... or three, all while witnessing how powerful those 4 words can be. My hopes are to keep expanding and sharing the love and spreading the positive vibes to people globally. Spread the word and share the love!

5. Being represented by Creative Edge, what are the top 3 lessons you’ve had with them representing you?

  1. Together we are better 
  2. My Creative Edge team always has my best interests at heart when advising me of direction and opportunity
  3. To slow down when I talk; when I get excited, (nice choice of words...nervous...) I start to talk really fast.

6. Give us the top 5 most random jobs you’ve had.
  • Snowboard Instructor
  • Lifeguard 
  • Air Brush Tattooer
  • Car Salesperson
  • Author

7. What’s the biggest challenge you’ve had as a writer and how does it compare to some of the biggest challenges in your personal life?

The challenge that I faced the most while writing was becoming extremely emotionally invested in my writing. That was a direct impact of choosing to write about certain things that happened in my life and the people around me. I wanted to write something that hit home for a lot of different types of people. Because at the end of the day, strip the circumstances, any feeling of positive or negative is similar. The feeling of happy; no matter the circumstances, is the same for us, and the same goes for negative feelings. No matter the circumstances, there is always going to be someone out there that knows the feeling that you're feeling, no matter how dark, or how down you may feel, you are truly never alone. Watching Hadley fly through life, and cheering her on, through numerous serious life events that we have all either gone through, or know someone who's gone through. We are connected through these feelings no matter where we come from or where we're headed. Through my 20's I dove head first into what I believed was right, and I kept at it. When things broke down, I glued them back together, and continued to move forward; not knowing exactly where I was going. Still, somehow I knew I had to just keep moving forward. Through a hell of a lot of wine, multiple meltdowns, and too many pee your pants laughing moments,  before I knew it, my journey had turned into these books.

8. If Chin Up Tits Out were a cocktail, what would be in it? 

A very Dirty Vodka Martini; extra Olives.
Zesty, strong, and up front; with something to eat; because, yum.


9. Since Canada has such a rich tradition in professional wrestling (Bret Hart being one of my top 5 wrestlers), what would be your intro music to the ring?

It will sound cliché and vain; although it works for me; so judgement free zone: "Feelin' My Self" by Nicki Minaj is my jam. It isn't because I am always feeling my own self, but it's a reminder that I always have a responsibility to take care of myself and be happy myself before I look outward for that. So if I am not feeling myself and need a pick me up, I will crank this and car dance to wherever I am going!

10. What are the best places for people to connect with you?

People, please reach out, I love connecting with cool souls from all over, I welcome any and all! My facebook link, IG and Twitter links are below. 

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Writer Wednesday: Sunshine Somerville

Lovely friends come from anywhere and some of them actually go everywhere. That’s the case with today’s visitor to Writer Wednesday. Sunshine Somerville is another of the wonderful crew of people who supported the #Humans4PuertoRico Giveaway and is always up to helping others selflessly. Apart from that, she also writes sci-fi epics with inspirations ranging from the Chronicles of Narnia to a healthy (or unhealthy) obsession with X-Men Comics. She’s also moved quite a few times in recent memory and it always impresses how her commitment to her craft always ensures she’s moving forwards on her Writer Journey.

1. Thank you kindly for being with us, Sunshine. First things first, how often do people misspell your name and how has being an indie author impacted your life?

Ha! “Summerville” happens pretty frequently, but I can’t really blame people since it fits so naturally. As for being an indie author, I’ve found that it’s impacted me more than I ever expected. Friends and family are often wonderful and supportive, of course, but being part of the indie community has meant finding my people. It’s great to click with this wide range of artsy types who share a love for creating stories. I’ve made a lot of friends from all over the world whom I never would have connected with otherwise, and I wouldn’t trade that sense of community for anything.

2. You often kid around that your first published book was at the ripe age of 9 lol. What can you tell us about that experience and how it shaped the writer you’d become in the future?

I loved borrowing my mom’s typewriter as a kid and punching out stories (some original, but most rip-offs of my favorite horse stories at the time). Because of my mom’s early encouragement, writing became one of my favorite things in the world. I know developing that love early helped me later on – writing novels is not an easy task, and you have to really, really love writing in order to get over a lot of the frustrating hurtles. Also, I think starting young helped me be less afraid to take risks with story ideas – as a kid, I got ideas from everywhere and learned how to shape them and make things fit together. I still love blending genres and fiddling with tropes, and I think after a while it became a creative habit that now kind of defines my storytelling style.

3. Seems like you had a topsy turvy 2017 in regards to moving? What can you tell us of that experience, how did it impact your writing, and what recommendations would you give people who have hectic schedules and life events that might make writing a challenge?

2017 was nuts! I started the year in Kalamazoo, Michigan, (yes, that’s a real city). Then my husband was relocated temporarily to Kansas City, Missouri, so we lived there for 6 months. Then at the end of 2017 we bought a house in the northwest suburbs of Detroit. I spent a lot of our time in Missouri by myself – I knew 3 people in the whole state and worked from home – so it was the perfect time to write. It was great to be dropped into a new place with different landscapes, different people, different cultural quirks, etc. It seemed perfectly natural to write a new story based on this different world (and Missouri IS a different world), and it was refreshing to write something completely new. It was also a little cathartic, because in the middle of the painfully hot summer I decided to turn Kansas City into a kind of hellmouth – lol.
For any writer whose life gets hectic, I think you need to find what works for you. If you honestly don’t have the time or energy or will to write, let yourself take a break. That doesn’t make you a bad writer. But when you DO feel the itch, at least write notes. If an idea pops in your head while you’re packing boxes (not hypothetically, in my case) grab your phone or a notepad and write it down for later.

4. The Kota series is an expansive sci-fi epic. What can you tell us about the series, how many books are in it and in what order should people read?

The Kota Series is based on what my brother and I and our 2 best friends played when we were little – hence writing the first version when I was 9. It evolved over the decades and now fits more in the New Adult range, I’d say. This series is probably the best example of my love of genre-blending. There are elements of Sci-Fi, Fantasy, Dystopian Fiction, Superhero Fiction, etc. I use everything from zombies to angels. 

Books 1-4 are the main chunk of the series and definitely need to be read in order. I wrote “The Prophet” as a free prequel that can be read first or after the main series, but it works as a good intro. At the moment, I have 2 Companion Stories that should be read after the series, and they feature characters who weren’t able to have their full stories included in the main series. Since I have decades’ worth of this epic in my head, I plan to do at least a few more Companion Stories in the future.

5. You’re also currently working on audiobook versions of your works. How has that experience been and what can you tell us about this new aspect to your writer journey?

I’ve found it refreshing. It’s a bizarre and exciting thing when you hear someone bringing your words to life. I narrated my children’s book myself because I knew exactly how I wanted it performed – I’m not sure I would do any of my more serious books myself, but the kids book was fun. For “The Woman of the Void” I found a narrator on ACX who did a great job, and it was cool to collaborate with someone new. Now for “The Prophet” I’m using my brother as the narrator, which is fun especially because he’s literally the face of the main character – it’s my brother’s face on the cover of the book.

6. If variety is the spice of life, your writing leans towards flavorful with many genres explored. If your books were the menu of a restaurant, what would the restaurant be called and how would you describe the cuisine?

Great question! Hmm… I immediately picture some wacky, colorful restaurant like something that would’ve been in “The Fifth Element” where all of the food seems a bit alien and makes you a little nervous… but curious too. I think the many-genre aspect would lead to eclectic dishes including “String Theory Pasta” and “Phantasyan Alphabet Soup.” As for a name of the restaurant, I’d go all abstract and just use the Kota Mark. 

7. Complete the following sentences:

The easiest part of being an indie author is being my own boss when it comes to what stories I want to write.

No one would suspect that my greatest challenge is trying to be perky on camera – LOL.

My best triumph so far on my writer journey is hearing from a teacher that his English-learning students in China loved and understood the humor in my children’s book. That was a great feeling. 

Books make life better because we get to explore infinite possibilities.

In the next five years, I will write at least 3 more books and finish audiobooks of all my books.

8. What is the craziest place you’ve ever gotten an idea and how did you write it down?

While in Missouri, the hubs and I took a day trip to explore Meramec Caverns. It was way weird and cool, and about halfway through the tour my husband whispered to me, “Is this going in your next book?” I’d already been simmering on how to use the place, and suddenly I saw a rock formation ahead and knew exactly how the caves would fit perfectly in The Alt-World Chronicles. I answered, “It is now!” and started taking video of everything. Video, when you can get it, is super helpful for recreating a scene later.

9. What’s the biggest surprise a reader has ever done once they read one of your books?

Honestly, I’m still surprised whenever anyone tells me they’ve read my books, so that’s always a pleasant surprise. LOL. I had an artist friend once draw the main characters for the Kota, so that was pretty cool too. 

10. Thanks so much for being here, and hey, everyone can use a bit of Sunshine, so where could people connect with you to find your books or be in touch?

All of my books, my blog, and fun extras can be found on my website at:





Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Writer Wednesday: Rebekah Jonesy

Some people wear their heart on their sleeves, but Miss Jonesy wears it there, on her stockings, and on stiletto boots in case you’re wondering. As generous as she is kind, the spark to Rebekah stems from the fact that she will always go the extra mile to help others while still maintaining laser focus in her writing. I’ve had the pleasure of not only getting to know a spitfire of a writer but gaining a lovely friend thanks in part to her unconditional support for the #Humans4PuertoRico effort. Along with a very special crew, she offered a lot of support to me on a personal level and to countless people in many places where so many were hurting. Now that you have that image in your mind, juxtapose it with a feisty sense of humor, tales that include erotica, and a vocabulary that would make sailors either blush or wail in fraternal support. She’s that kind of a gal and I’m proud and happy to call her friend. Here’s 10 questions so you can get to know her better.

1. Miss Jonesy, before anything else, I’d like to publicly thank you once again for having one of the most generous hearts I know. A lot of people might focus on what you write and your sense of humor, but often don't take the time to look past that. So stating that, tell us who is Rebekah Jonesy and what makes her tick as a human, a reader, and a writer. 

Just to clarify, it’s thick soled, heavy tread, curb stomper boots. You got the stockings right, however. Keeping my heart there keeps it protected. Only people worthy of it get to see it. And now everyone knows how you know where I keep my heart. ;)

What makes me tick? Coffee.

But what makes me purr like a fine tuned German machine is dark humor, flirting with willing coworkers, making inappropriate comments, mountains of books to read in every genre, and being as fair as possible in all things.

My main philosophy is: I can’t stop the jerks of the world, but I can choose not to be one of them.

My other philosophy is, More coffee, please.

2. You are a voracious reader and review everything you come into contact as well. Why do you do this and what’s your takeaway from writing a review?

I love to read. I love good authors as well. I understand, being an author myself, how important those reviews are to the authors so I make sure to post them when I remember because I know that the more I review the better the authors do and the more likely they are to write more books for me to read. It’s actually kinda self-serving.

I don’t actually review everything I’ve read. Amazon has a cap on how many reviews you can write a month so not all of them can get reviewed there. If I posted all of them on my blog it would be full of just that. Goodreads is about the only place I can post all of my reviews without getting them blocked. And I beta read for a lot of authors too, so it’s not always easy to remember when those get published and I can post reviews for them. But really I do it just to share my love of books and encourage my authors. Like Only Human cause omg…. But I will save that for my podcast.

3. Being an indie author comes with its own sets of challenges and each of us have our own writer journey. What’s been the biggest challenge you’ve overcome and why is that such an important triumph?

Imposter syndrome “What the hell am I doing? Why do I think I can compete against these awesome authors out there? Look at this prose! This scene description! My work is shit in comparison! I should stop pretending…”

That used to eat at me all the time. Then I finally remembered, I’m mother fucking awesome. Maybe my writing isn’t the best. Maybe I am not as good at heart wrenching scenes like Estrada, or make lovable characters like Oake. My stories don’t thread a fine line of right vs. wrong and question what is “good” like Robertson. I cannot capture the depth of insanity and pain like Compton. I will never write an evil psychopath as well as Angell.

Because I am not Estrada, Oake, Robertson, or Compton. And I am certainly no Angell.

I am not a fake version of them. I am the best version of Jonesy. And I am getting better every day. No one does Jonesy better than me. No one tells Jonesy’s stories better than me. That is how I got over imposter syndrome. I am not pretending to be anyone, or anything else. I am doing what I do. Tequila might have played a part in that epiphany too.

4. Anyone who knows you knows you love cake, both baking and eating it and let’s face it, it’s cake. So tell us two things, what’s the hardest cake you’ve had to do, and if you made a Jonesy Cake, what would it include and how would the taste experience be?

Cake is just my most recent baking obsession/project. I’m a mad scientist in the kitchen and I love to experiment. Hardest cake is easily a wedding cake. The first one I made burned out my stand mixer so I had to finish by hand. It has to be firm, but moist, and flavorful. There are several layers, and shapes and sizes. Each tier has to be able to be cut on its own. The top tier has to be freezer safe. And everything has to be able to be decorated. It took me weeks to practice everything, set it up, get the equipment, and about 12 hours to bake and assemble.

A Jonesy Cake, you will not be surprised to learn, is a many layered cake. But not stacked. It’s in a bowl, because I think outside the box, and each layer is a dome. It’s a layer of peanut butter cake, then chocolate fudge, then peanut butter cookies, a thin smear of more fudge, chocolate ice cream, then peanut butter fluff. Once everything is packed in and frozen solid you flip it out and top the whole thing with chocolate ganache and peanut butter cookie crumbles.

5. As a writer, there are good days, and then there’s the other 345 days a year. What drives you to keep going forwards?

The joy of creation. Setting order to chaos. And quieting those nagging voices in my head that want their story told. Also the other amazing authors I know that keep fighting to good fight and put out books even while they struggle with life and all its insanity.

6. You also have a podcast with two wonderful indie authors. What can you tell us about that and how has the experience been so far?

Ahahaha! We are such dorks. It has been a ton of fun. We get to hang out with each other and other authors that join us. We talk about books, stories, markets, squirrels, libraries, authors, anything and everything related to reading. And the crazy squirrel that lives in my yard. So we’re all over the place. We’ve had a lot of technical difficulties. YouTube had a hiccup and decided that my video that I hadn’t made or loaded was spam so I got banned from live streaming. We hopped back to Heidi Angell’s channel within a few minutes and barely even started late that time. We decided that the show would always be live so we can chat with people live and keep it real. It’s been a trial, to be sure. We’re slowly getting things down pat. But each one has gotten better, and gets even more fun. If you could hear what happens once we go off air…

7. If you were a cat burglar who left a calling card on the scene of the crime, what would it be and why?

Semen. Confusion to my enemies!

8. Here’s a straightforward question: What are your writer plans for the next 3 years?

If you think that’s straight forward…

I’m starting a new series in a new genre. I have my first fantasy novel coming out this spring and I am stupidly happy about it. I have the first eight books already planned out, and the prequel written and nearly ready to hand out for free.

I will keep writing romance and erotica, but more than likely I will post them to KU only. I also have fun plans to write “unromance” stories, probably straight to my blog. Little fun things where it does not go right. She finds Mr. Wrong. He’s turned off by her neediness. The alpha male slams her up against the wall, smothers her with a deep kiss to lay his claim, and she knees him in the balls and pepper sprays him. She’s a super shy virgin that says she isn’t sure if she’s really into being his sub, he shrugs and calls her a cab. Just fun little things I write and usually delete.

I’ve also started working with OurWriteSide where I am helping other authors get published and learning a ton about the bigger picture of being an indie author. To be honest I am learning so much from them and the classes they host that I can’t even imagine, yet, where that is going to take me in the next year let alone three years from now. I reckon you’ll have to watch me to find out.

9. And here’s a deep question: If people did these 3 things, the world would be a better place.

Accept what you don’t understand.

Don’t expect everyone to be like you or other people you’ve known.

Once you learn what holds you back; let it go. An anchor only works if you remain attached to it.

10. Since I’m a big fan of you and am thankful of having you here, I’d like to say thanks one more time and to invite you to share your links, because you are too cool a human not to share. Where can people find you and what can they expect to find?

You can expect all kinds of hijinks and absurdity. Also recipes, sexy writing, random facts, mythology, and squirrels. If you wanna hear me chat about all those things you can look for Beautiful Book Geeks on youtube and Facebook.

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Writer Wednesday: Kelsey Barthel

There’s something very fun to me about doing interviews and it’s always that challenge to ask something new or that forces the author to switch gears and dig deeper into what makes them tick. It’d been a while since I did these interviews but it’s high time we get to knowing about new reads to enjoy that aren’t your typical fare. That’s because beyond an indie writer, I’m also a reader and looooove mixing it up, which is why it’s such a treat to have with us Kelsey Barthel, a lovely and enthusiastic Canadian indie author represented by Creative Edge and the author of Beyond the Code.

1. Hi, Kelsey and thanks so much for taking the time to join us for Writer Wednesday. So let’s get straight into it: Who is Kelsey Barthel and why should people keep an eye out for you and your works?

I am a new, eager author with a creative mind that has been marinated in years of reading comics and watching anime and action movies. My work brings fully realized characters, riveting intrigue, and action that grips you by the imagination and doesn’t let go. These are characteristics that my writing has become known for and it’s why people should keep an eye on what I have to offer.

2. Reading the synopsis to Beyond the Code, it seems moral ambiguity and how it impacts what we do and how we react is a big topic. How true is that and what other major topics are woven into your work?

This is very true. The concept of doing the right thing in spite of the obstacles is one of the core beliefs expressed throughout the entire series. It’s the idea that fighting for what’s right often requires sacrifice and is almost never an easy road but what makes a true hero is when they push forward and persevere. Beyond the Code also touches on the moral gray areas of fighting soldiers who are simply following orders and knowing when to choose your battles.

3. I know some pretty amazing Canadian authors and have seen that many of them are extremely proud of where they’re from, but here’s a curve ball, how has being Canadian impacted your writer journey and what you write?

I believe that every person should be judged on a person to person basis. That we should try more to understand and know people for more than just race, religion, gender or upbringing. That what truly makes up a person is not a questionnaire checklist of what you identify as but a million different memories and experiences. I think being a Canadian has been a big part of that thinking and has also helped me in trying to bring forth more fully realized characters in my writing.

4. The title to your novel is Beyond the Code and as humans, there are some who would say we are largely defined by our DNA Code. How much to you think genetics and fate play into our lives?

To some extent DNA plays a big part in establishing the roles we set out in our lives. For example, if someone grows up to be very tall, he or she may go into sports like basketball and that initial talent might push them to build up their skills and pursue a future in it. This is however, not certain. Talent, in the end, will only take you so far and is no substitute for drive and hard work. In Beyond the Code, these power beings are kept under control because they believe they are born to serve but that doesn’t stop them from breaking away from this system when they believe it’s the right thing to do.

5. When it comes to your main character, her duality of Aurora/Luna presents some interesting possibilities for your narrative, but when it comes to the character, what music do you think each of her identities would like.

I think piano music would fit her character very nicely. It’s beautiful and refined like a woman of her status. Also, it’s a flexible music for dramatic changes in tone and pace. It can go from smooth lounge music, to soulful and emotional, to fast paced action. It would be perfect.

6. You are represented by Creative Edge, what can you tell us of that experience and how has it impacted your writer journey?

Mickey has been incredible. A lot of what makes a first book successful is having contacts with people and services that can get the word out. Considering this was my very first book and I am a bit of an introvert, I knew nobody in the industry and had very little idea of what to do. Creative Edge has been getting me into interviews, got me a launch event at Happy Harbour Comics on Feb 11, and has put out a press release. He also has high hopes for what Beyond the Code could become. I would’ve been completely lost with his help.

7. If you had to describe your writing process like a 5 course meal, what would be there to serve?

First course: Bullet point event organization. Basically solidifying what’s all going to happen in the story arch. 

Second Course: Skeleton story. This is where I write the story in mostly short hand descriptions just to get things down. This can also act as a really bad first draft. 

Third Course: The Meat and potatoes. This is the serious writing stage where I concentrate on the style of my writing and really flesh out the story. This can also be considered the first full draft. 

Fourth Course: The rewrites. With the second draft, if time permits, I set down the first draft for a little bit and look over it after enough time has passed so it’s not fresh anymore. That way I will be reading what’s written and not what I remember should be written. It helps catch typos and errors. Another part of this course is the beta reader’s addition. With Beyond the Code, I managed to gain some fantastic beta readers that were instrumental in making the book better. It’s always valuable to get another eye on your work to get that fresh perspective. 

Fifth Course: The Final touches. Like a dessert, this stage can be very sweet and satisfying for an author. It’s when you get to read your book fully and let the story flow over you. You get to see your hard work at its peak and notice minor imperfections along the way that you can change. This stage is also where you get the highest feeling of accomplishment.

8. What random writing quirks do you have that are unique to you?
When writing on Microsoft Word, I used to make a big deal about needing to write in New Times Roman at 12 point font. Also, when I’m thinking of a scene or story arch in my head, it plays like a movie. I think that’s why some people say my writing has a bit of a cinematic feel to it.

9. What inspired you to write Beyond the Code?
A crescent moon pendant and a cool dress I bought. These things sparked the initial idea of Aurora and the raw story blossomed from there. To help fill the cast, I asked some of my friends to pick a superpower and a fighting style and I made characters from those original decisions. It was pretty fun.

10. How can people connect with you to get to know you a bit beyond your code? :D
I have a facebook page for Beyond the Code that you can use to get in touch and you can message me through Inkshares as well. Here are some useful links:

* * * *

I’d like to once again give a huge thanks to Kelsey for joining us here. To learn a bit more about Beyond the Code, click the link or read below.



Beyond the Code:
To the common world, Aurora Fallon is merely the pampered daughter of a rich and influential family. But to the secret world of the Order, she is Luna, the powerful and formidable warrior Knight, under the rule of her Master, Cole Iver. Together, they strive to bring down Damon Lexus, a wicked Master who uses her Knights in cowardly and dishonourable ways for her own selfish desires. But when they obtain evidence that may bring Damon Lexus under the judgement of the Orders ruling power, the Hand Council, Damon makes a rash decision and orders the assassination of Cole Iver.

By pure coincidence, Luna catches Damon’s Knight in the act but is too late to save her master and kills the assassin in a moment of grief-stricken rage. Luna knows the one with her Master’s blood on her hands is not the one she killed—she seeks the Master. But after a failed attempt at revenge, Luna is pulled from the depths of her dark anger and put on a better path by the Hunter who was ordered to kill her. Together, they will work to break away from being mere tools for the powerful and become heroes.

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

A new adventure: Estrada Crates

For a LONG time, I’ve wanted to connect directly with readers. That’s why I’ve done book signings, events where I present my work and even play music, and gone to the Puerto Rico Comic Con numerous years. But still, I’ve always wanted to have a direct connection with people that can’t make it to an event. So 2018 is the year where I try something different and present Estrada Crates.

I’ve mentioned before that if you want to get my books, one of your best options is Libros 787 and that is still very much the case. One of the reasons is that anyone who makes an order through their website gets a free eBook copy of any of my books just for supporting a Puerto Rican business. I might add that this is a permanent offer because these people run a good business, support local talent, and they offer a lot of hope to people back home who are wondering how to keep moving forwards after Hurricane María. That said, I also wanted to offer something different. In short, if you want to pick up some books and are in a rush, Libros 787 is your go-to place. If you want something different and aren’t in much of a rush, then read below.

I am a big fan of people who adopt a DIY ethos in regards to their goals and dreams. People who come to mind include Pearl Jam and especially Fugazi, a band who did things on their terms, and charged super cheap tickets even if they were one of the best bands of their time or any time. So I got to thinking and being a part of BookTube, unboxings have always been a fascinating thing to watch for me. People coming into contact with a little box full of surprises, the happiness when something catches their attention, and having that direct connection thanks to a personalized detail. Since this is a pilot version, I will only take a limited amount of orders and do ask for patience in case I need to put in an order for more books (a “problem” I wouldn’t mind having :D).

That said, the effort is limited to the US, Puerto Rico, and other US territories due to shipping costs and me seeing how I can handle international orders. My idea is to not charge additional tax or shipping and simply charge a flat rate where everything is included. I like things tidy like that and miss the days where you paid a fixed amount for something. In regards to International shipping, I’m still trying to decipher options because doing a test run, the cost to ship all my books internationally is about $50… just for shipping. Not happy about that but I will continue to look for options to send signed copies of my work. In the meantime, if you’re in Puerto Rico, mainland US or anywhere where reasonable USPS shipping costs are honored, here are the options I’m offering. I’ll close up with the HOW you can get your own Estrada Crate.

“Testing the waters” Poetry Crate - $20

-       2 signed and dedicated poetry collections of your choosing
-       1 original Post-it Poem
-       1 Personalized Letter

“Lyrical Likeness” Crate - $30
-       4 signed and dedicated poetry collections
-       1 Original Post-it Poem
-       1 Personalized Letter

“Well versed” Poetry Crate - $50
-       All 6 released poetry collections, signed and dedicated
-       2 original Post-It poems
-       1 Personalized Letter

“More Human than Human Crate” - $50
-       Copies of both Only Human and Shadow of a Human, signed and dedicated
-       1 signed and dedicated poetry collection
-       2 original Post-It poems
-       1 Personalized Letter

“Bilingual” Crate - $50
-       1 English poetry collection
-       1 Spanish poetry collection
-       1 copy of Twenty Veinte (Bilingual Collection)
-       2 Post-It Poems (1 English – 1 Spanish)
-       1 Personalized Letter

“Estrada Sampler” Crate - $70

-       Copy of Only Human, signed and dedicated
-       Copy of 1 poetry collection, signed and dedicated
-       Copy of Twenty Veinte, first bilingual collection, signed and dedicated bilingually
-       Copy of The Daydreams on the Sherbet Shore, signed and dedicated
-       1 Post-it Poem
-       1 Personalized Letter

“The Kitchen Sink” Crate - $100
-       All 10 of my published works signed and dedicated
-       5 Post-it Poems
-       Overview of upcoming works
-       1 Personalized Letter


1.     Contact me via DM on Twitter or Facebook
2.    Get your parents’ permission if you’re not 18 years or older
3.    Have a PayPal account or ATH Móvil
4.    Order

Btw, in regards to the box itself, I’ll be doing my best to use old boxes that either I or other people don’t use in my efforts to promote recycling. If it gets to the point where this can be a more continuous thing, I’ll be looking into options where my efforts make the smallest impact on the environment possible.

Thanks for your time and if you do order an Estrada Crate, I’d love for you to do an unboxing, and share your experience.

Peace, love, and maki rolls