Monday, June 29, 2015

The Infinity Blog Award

Thank you, Rachel Pattinson, for nominating me for this award. You are wonderful!

Now . . . to mention 11 facts about myself . . .
1. I used to be a vegetarian, for health reasons. After chronic problems with acid reflux, I had to let my vegetarian lifestyle go.

2. I love animals.

3. My fellow humans scare me.

4. I love all things alien. I love watching Ancient Aliens.

5. I have a serious sweet tooth. My meals are always planned around what I’m having for dessert.

6. I broke my ring finger on my left hand, while playing tag with my brother. To this day I don’t know how that happened.

7. I don’t eat fish, but sometimes I might eat shellfish.

8. I’m the youngest of 4 kids.

9. I’m afraid of heights.

10. Even though I always go on beach holidays, I don’t like being in the ocean and always stare at the sea from a distance. As a kid I used to only go ankle-deep into the ocean, but now I will probably scream my head off if I went ankle deep.

11. I’m addicted to vanilla chai tea.

Three custom questions from Rachel:

1. If you could be any superhero, who would it be and why?
Don’t hate me, but I’m not really into superheroes. But If I had to choose, I would say Spiderman. I like the anonymity that he operates under.

2. If you had to choose between permanently too hot or too cold, which one would you choose?
I would say too cold. I don’t do well in summer at all. But I bet when I’m living in my own winter wonderland I’ll probably be begging for summer.

3. What's your ultimate writing dream?
I would love to be in a position where I could support myself with my writing. To be a successful full-time writer sounds good to me.

For my nominees: I nominate every person that has left a comment on my blog this year. You guys deserve this award. Please, don’t be shy in claiming it.

And now, if you accept this award, here are the rules:
1. Thank the blog that nominated you
2. Tell us 11 facts about yourself
3. Answer the questions that were set for you to answer
4. Nominate 11 bloggers and set them questions in return

My questions for my nominees are:
1. What is your favorite food?
2. What are your hobbies?
3. What is your idea of the best vacation? 

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Interview with Cherie Reich (Once upon a Nightmare Blog Tour)

I am so honored to have the awesome Cherie Reich over. Welcome, Cherie!

 An Interview with Cherie Reich, author of Once upon a Nightmare: A Collection

What is a typical day in your life as an author like?
I wake up and get ready to go to work. I’m a full-time library assistant at a small academic library and also assist with our testing center. As soon as I arrive at work, I do my work-related work first, which usually includes checking testing sites to see if we have new registrations. If we do, then I add these to our calendar. I also respond back to emails and phone messages. Once I finish that work (about 1-2 hours into the work day), I open up my author email and social media sites. I respond to important emails and posts. Then, I start editing or writing something. I answer phone calls and emails as the work day goes on as well as assist any library patrons that need help. Midday, I have lunch and watch some old TV shows on Amazon Prime—lately those are episodes of The X-Files on my 1-hour lunch days or Batman: The Animated Series on my 30-minute lunch days. After lunch, I check what emails have come in both work-related and author-related. I may visit some blogs then as well as some more social media. I may write or edit more or read. A couple hours before I leave work, I check the testing sites again, add new registrations to the calendar, and send out the testing schedule for the next day. Usually toward the end of the day, I try to finish up all emails in my inbox. I rarely have the energy to do author-related work in the evenings. Then, it’s time to go to bed, sleep, and start the next day doing much the same as the day before. A glamorous life, right? *laughs*

How do you balance being an author along with other aspects of your life?
Balancing author-life with everything else can be difficult. Personally, it helps I’m single and childless. I can’t imagine how people work full-time jobs and take care of children, a spouse, and a house/apartment as well as find time to write. For me, the key to coming close to balancing everything is to set goals. I try to keep my monthly goals as much as possible, but it’s also good to be flexible too.

What do you do to relax?
I read and watch TV, often with a cup of hot tea nearby.

What is your ideal comfort food?
Pizza, bread, and pasta. I may be a pescetarian, but deep down, I’m a carbivore. It’s terrible, I know.

Do you have any advice for other aspiring writers?
Read. Read in your chosen genre. Read outside that genre. Read books for research, on writing, for fun. Read, read, read. Writing is very important too, of course. Writing is what writers do, but reading will teach you about the rhythm of words, plot techniques, characters, themes, and so much more.

A monster hunts us. After hibernating for a decade, it’s ravenous. We long to stop this nightmare, but the end of the road is far. There is no waking up once a legend sets its sights on you.

Purchase Once upon a Nightmare: A Collection by Cherie Reich at Amazon. From June 22-28, the collection is only $0.99!

Cherie Reich is a speculative fiction author and library assistant living in Virginia. Visit her website and blog for more information.

Monday, June 22, 2015

The CassaSeries is here!

Congratulations Alex! You are amazing!

Release date - June 22 2015

By Alex J. Cavanaugh 
ISBN 9781939844118
Price - $5.99 eBook boxed set
Science fiction/adventure (FIC028010) and science fiction/space opera (FIC028030)

The Amazon Best-Selling Series!

CassaStar - Few options remain for Byron. Slated to train as a Cosbolt pilot, Byron is determined to prove his worth to his instructor, Bassa. As war brews on the edge of space, Bassa must make a decision that could decide the fate of both men. Will their skills be enough as they embark on a mission destined to stretch their abilities to the limit?

CassaFire - Byron’s days of piloting Cosbolt fighters behind him, the detection of alien ruins sends him to the planet of Tgren. Forced to train a Tgren named Athee and deal with an eager young scientist, he feels invaded. Tensions mount as the ruins reveal a potential weapon, plunging him further into the chaos. All Byron wanted was his privacy…

CassaStorm - Commanding the base on Tgren, Byron watches as a galaxy-wide war encroaches upon the planet. When the war hits Tgren, it triggers nightmares in his son. The ancient alien ship begins transmitting a deadly code and the probe that almost destroyed Tgren twenty years ago returns. The storm is about to break, and Byron is caught in the middle…

Find it here:

Alex J. Cavanaugh has a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and works in web design, graphics, and technical editing. A fan of all things science fiction, his interests range from books and movies to music and games. Online he is the Ninja Captain and founder of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group. He’s the author of Amazon Best-Sellers CassaStar, CassaFire, and CassaStorm.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Doing good

I am done with the first round of changes to my manuscript. I have had a busy few days, working until two in the morning, but it was worth it. Having the first round of changes behind me, definitely gives me more confidence to complete the other rounds. Man, it feels good to have worked through my manuscript. I feel like a weight has been lifted off my shoulders. I had tackled the big problems first, which was what I had been worried about most. Thank you so much for all your kind support and encouragement. 

My sister (the chef) is going on holiday next week, and she has asked me to go with her. I didn't want to go, but it's the first holiday she has had in 6 years. She is definitely a workaholic. Apparently she is under the impression I'm going to get up early in the mornings and go hiking with her. For those that don't know, I'm lazy and walking is as active as I get. I have a few scheduled posts planned for next week, in which a few fellow bloggers share their latest releases with us. So please, do stop by to offer them your support.

My brother has new data for me to rework. Thankfully I can escape it next week, but after that I have to work on his project, as well as my editing, which should be very interesting. Both require huge amounts of concentration.  

I know my blog has been very dreary lately, and I'm working on ways to give my posts more energy, or at least post about things that are more interesting. Unfortunately, I'm a very boring person, and I don't always like trying new things, which could be why I haven't done anything exciting to post about. But I shall think of something. 

If you have a blog, how do you keep it fresh?

Monday, June 15, 2015

When things come up

Thank you so much to everyone who commented on my June IWSG post. Your kind words and motivation helped. I got a lot done. THANK YOU!

I would love to say I have been absent all of last week because I was working on my manuscript, but I would be lying. Even though I wanted to blog and report how I was managing with my changes, I couldn't. Our router was hacked . . . again and I didn't dare go on the internet. It just goes to show, no matter what you you do, if someone wants to access your information, they can. It doesn't help that I started watching CSI Cyber. Luckily the person was just piggy backing on our internet connection and locking us out. 

Other than that, I have been rather productive with my manuscript changes. It was overwhelming at first and I actually only completed a few pages a day. That is until Friday, when I suddenly got the energy and inspiration to keep going and going. I got so much done, I surprised myself. I also have a strategy for tackling my manuscript. First, I'm going to make all the changes, which my editor and I agreed on, which are noted in Track Changes. Secondly, I will make the additional changes my editor suggested in my personal detailed report, which are errors I keep making repeatedly throughout the document. Thirdly, I will cut all the unnecessary words. Lastly, I will sort out all the punctuation. I think it helps if I only make one type of change at a time. I can't pay attention to a lot of things at the same time. So I will end up going over the manuscript a few times.

Even though I was freaking out the past few weeks, I haven't done a lot of walking. Mostly because I simply didn't feel like it. Bad excuse, I know. Other than that, I haven't really been up to much. I felt so bad about not working on my manuscript that I finally started working on it and I enjoyed it. 

What have you been up to?

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Still freaking out (IWSG)

It is that time again. I get to share with the whole world what an insecure mess I am. For those that don’t like whining, please stop reading now.

Okay people, my manuscript is back from my editor and the comments make a ton of sense and explain perfectly where I had gone wrong. Also, the mistakes I made can easily be fixed. So why am I so afraid of approaching my manuscript? I see the notes and I get overwhelmed. I told myself that I would take it page by page, but I have already psyched myself out.

I think I just need to suck it up, take a big girl pill and start working. The manuscript is not going to change itself. I know all this, so why do I feel so afraid? Do any of you ever feel this way? Maybe I just need a kick to the backside. Any of you want to deliver the blow?

The Insecure Writers Support Group was created by the talented Mr. Alex J. Cavanaugh so that writers can share their insecurities and/or encourage others who need support with their own. You can visit Alex Here, or if you want to join us in discussing our insecurities on the first Wednesday of each month, you are welcome to join by going Here.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Unable to play it cool

I'm hyperventilating and having silent fits of stress. Why? Well, I got my manuscript back from my editor this weekend and now I'm flipping out a bit. My editor did a good job and if anyone wants to hire Janie Goltz, (thank you, Janie) she is amazing and affordable. I guess I'm just a little overwhelmed. I've never been in this stage of my career. I know all I have to do is either make the changes she suggested or not. But it all feels so surreal. Whew!

Okay, I think I have to go do some serious walking to de-stress or I'm going to drive myself crazy. It's not something to freak out over, right? One more thing. Has anyone else been having problems with Blogger or Google+? I've been unable to read my notifications and at times even log in to Blogger.

Have a great week everyone.

Not quite myself

I have no idea why, but I have not been feeling like myself. Even being in my own skin feels alien.  The good news is that I still managed t...