Sunday, June 19, 2016
A wise cowboy once told me his personal philosophy ~ life is a series of last chance canyons. He said he realized it once while he was riding the range in Last Chance Canyon and wondered about the name. Dry Creek Canyon was named for the creek that went dry in the summer. Rock Creek Canyon had a lot of rocks. It occurred to him that someone must have had a last chance in this canyon once.
He said you have a lot of chances in life, firsts and lasts. Everyone remembers their firsts: your first bike ride, your first date, your first day of school are things everyone recognizes as significant. You remember some of your lasts too, like graduation is an end to you childhood, but some you don't notice until they're passed. Like your last chance to hold your child on your lap or jump on the bed with them. Pretty soon they grow up and you've lost that chance. Or you last chance to see an old friend or loved one. Most of us have experienced a sudden loss where we didn't know the last time we saw or spoke to someone was our last chance to be with them, to share a special moment with them, and let them know how we feel. If we'd only known.
Life is a series of last chance canyons. Don't be afraid to take a chance~
Thursday, June 16, 2016
Welcome to my stop on the Hair in all the Wrong Places Blog Tour! Read about the book and be sure to enter the giveaway!
~About the Book~
Hair in All the Wrong Places by Andrew Buckley
Publication Date: June 7, 2016
What has he done?
What’s happening to him?
And what on Earth is that smell?
For Colin Strauss, puberty stinks. Blackouts, hallucinations, and lapses in memory are the perils of growing up werewolf.
Worse than that, Colin worries he might have had something to do with the recent attacks on the townspeople. He may have eaten a person. It doesn’t matter that it’s someone he doesn’t particularly like. What kind of boy goes around eating people?
Foolishly, all Colin can think about is how Becca Emerson finally kissed him for the first time. Yep, hormones are afoot. Yikes!
But girls will have to wait. Collin better get himself under control before someone else ends up hurt or worse . . . dead.
~Find the Book~
~About the Author~
Andrew Buckley attended the Vancouver Film School’s Writing for Film and Television program. After pitching and developing several screenplay projects for film and television, he worked in marketing and public relations, before becoming a professional copy and content writer. During this time Andrew began writing his first adult novel, DEATH, THE DEVIL AND THE GOLDFISH, followed closely by his second novel, STILTSKIN. He works as an editor for Curiosity Quills Press.
Andrew also co-hosts a geek movie podcast, is working on his next novel, and has a stunning amount of other ideas. He now lives happily in the Okanagan Valley, BC with three kids, one cat, one needy dog, one beautiful wife, and a multitude of characters that live comfortably inside of his mind.
Andrew is represented by Mark Gottlieb at the Trident Media Group.
~Enter the Giveaway~
Giveaway Information: Contest ends June 24, 2016
· One (1) winner will receive a scrabble tile book cover charm (US ONLY)
· Five (5) winners will receive a digital copy of Hair in the Wrong Places by Andrew Buckley (INT)
When did you start writing and why?
I enjoyed writing throughout elementary and secondary school in the UK and, if I’m being honest, it’s the only subject I really excelled at throughout my entire academic career. I always found satire to be a natural thing to write and was considerably chastised in 5th year English class with Mrs Mallinson when I wrote an essay satirising Macbeth and his terrible decision-making skills. Not long after that I started writing screenplays (funnily enough my first screenplay was a terrible action movie about werewolves) and in my early twenties I transitioned to writing novels.
What's your favorite scene in Hair in the all the Wrong Places and why?
There are several but I’m partial to two in particular. There’s a scene when Colin’s crush breaks into his house to enlist him into investigating a crime scene (that Colin may or may not have been involved in) and it places Colin at the very height of his awkwardness. I may love awkward Colin more than any other version of himself. There’s also a scene with Colin’s Grandmother that I can’t talk about because it gives away too much story but you can find it in the chapter called ‘Granny Storm’.
What's your writing routine?
It’s very simple: ‘Write Whenever I Can.’ Unfortunately, I don’t have as much time as I’d like but I try to complete one book a year. I spend a lot of wonderful time with my wife and kids, I work two different jobs, and I write whenever I’m able which is usually late at night when everyone is asleep. I used to write with no clear direction when I was younger but these days I plan out the overall story arc and then plan chapter by chapter as I write.
What do you have in store for readers in the future?
I’m working on a ‘couple’ of different things at the moment. One is a secret project that I can tell no one about, the other is a TV concept pitch that I can also say nothing about. I have a new novel series started that covers the hilarious life and times of Jack the Ripper, and I have sequels for my first two novels, plus a sequel to HAVELOCK (writing as Jane D Everly) and then there’s the sequel to HAIR IN ALL THE WRONG PLACES . . . if anyone has a TARDIS, Time Turner, or an almost flawless cloning machine, please let me know.
Friday, June 3, 2016
After having been diagnosed this March with breast cancer, I've been through a whirlwind of medical tests and treatments. Surgery appears to have removed it all. Does that mean I'm cured? In remission? I don't know, but I do know that I'm still a "cancer patient" and probably will be for the rest of my life.
I feel pretty good. I'm lucky enough to only go through radiation therapy. I actually feel guilty that I seem to have gotten off so easy. I still have my breast and my hair. It seems weird to say "I have cancer" because technically, it's gone for all intents and purposes. But many years of cancer research say my odds of reoccurrence are higher now and it's best to be vigilant.
Radiation has been an interesting process. I'm finding most people don't know much about it or confuse it with chemotherapy, which involves taking medications that treat the entire body. The two work very differently. Here's what I've learned, but keep in mind: I'm not a medical professional. This is just my understanding, which may or may not be right.
Radiation is basically a high powered x-ray beam that targets a specific area of the body, in my case, the tissue around my surgery site. That's the place most likely to have microscopic cancer cells still floating around that were missed by the surgery. The radiation kills cells at a certain stage in their life cycle, including cancer cells, and encourages new healthy cells to grow back in their place. This happens naturally all the time, but radiation speeds up the process, which is kind of amazing if you think about it.
The machine that delivers the radiation beam is a huge thing that takes up a big room. It rotates around you while you lay on a table. The process is painless, like an x-ray. There's no light or heat, but there is a green laser line they use to position you exactly the same way each time. The machine clicks a little and whirs when it rotates. It buzzes when the beam is delivered, but it's nowhere near as loud as an MRI machine. It's much faster too. Each treatment lasts maybe 5-10 minutes on the table.
They play an oldies radio station in the room so there's music to distract you, which I think is a nice touch in what could be a really sterile, dark room. The day of my first treatment, Elvis came on the radio. He was singing a song about feeling his temperature rise and I had to laugh. It all seemed so absurd at that moment, lying on my back, half naked with my arms over my head while two technicians I've just barely met push me around on the table until I'm lined up properly. (The position reminds me vaguely of being strung on a torture rack, although it really doesn't hurt, I promise.)
The worst part I've found is the hard "head rest" that isn't that comfortable and essentially being topless in the company of strangers. Thank goodness they're all professional. I guess it's like giving birth - you lose your modesty out of necessity.
The best part is the awesome rose garden the hospital has adjacent to the parking lot that I get to visit every day if I want. The roses are all in bloom this time of year.
Most days I feel pretty good about where I am in this cancer patient stuff. So many people are struggling so much more than I am. Sometimes the terror hits me. What if I'm fooling myself that I'm OK? Lots of women go through breast cancer twice, even three times. I know it could come back anytime. Could be five or ten years down the road. How much longer do I get?
The truth is, none of us know how much time we have. Could be two years or two days. I have to focus on the right-now or I'll drive myself bonkers. Right now, I feel good. I'll take it and be grateful for it. Smell the roses. Every single day of it. You should too.
Tuesday, May 24, 2016
Hello amazing readers!
Welcome to the Book Blitz for
The Conch Shell of Doom by Ryan Hill!
Join us in celebrating this new release, and enter the giveaway found at the end of the post!
Happy Book Birthday, Ryan!!
Bailey didn’t mean to catch his parents plotting to unleash the sinister Trenton Maroney and his powerful oceanic army on the world. It was an honest mistake. Now, he’s got the horribly disfigured Mr. Lovell on his trail, which is doing wonders for Bailey’s anxiety.His only ally is Franklin, a burn-out several decades past wishing his brother Trenton was destroyed for good. Franklin has battled his brother for two thousand years, and has nothing to show for it except his beloved Mustang. To stop Mr. Lovell from awakening Trenton, Franklin and Bailey will have to get past his parents, a one-eyed stoner, crooked cops, giant Scotsmen, and Trenton’s army, which can only be summoned by one thing: the mysterious Conch Shell of Doom.
The Conch Shell of Doom by Ryan Hill Publication Date: May 24, 2016
Available for Purchase: Amazon
Growing up, Ryan Hill used to spend his time reading and writing instead of doing homework. This resulted in an obsession with becoming a writer, but also a gross incompetence in the fields of science and mathematics. A graduate of North Carolina State University, Ryan has been a film critic for over five years. He lives in Raleigh, NC, with his dog/shadow Maggie. Ryan also feels strange about referring to himself in the third person.
Complete the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win!
Thursday, May 19, 2016
Happy Release Day to
Artifacts by Pete Catalano!
Join us in celebrating this new release from Tantrum Books!
Enter the giveaway found at the end of the post.
Happy Book Birthday, Pete!
It's funny how one little letter can change a person's life. Jax and his friends have been planning the summer of a lifetime at Camp Runamuck. However, when one of them is facing summer at a school desk for failing English, they watch those plans crash and burn!At the last moment they're given a way out.An extra credit assignment to find several fake artifacts for a fairy tale display their teacher is presenting at the local library.Thinking they've hit the easiest-extra-credit-ever jackpot, they begin rummaging through any piles of junk they can find. As they start putting the clues together, they realize that what they're really searching for is one authentic artifact that can rewrite fairy tales!Enlisting the aid of the Lost Boys, Jax and his friends battle fairy tale villains to see who can get their hand, or their hook, on it first.
Artifacts by Pete Catalano Release Date: May 17, 2016 Publisher: Tantrum Boooks
Pete Catalano’s books are written for kids of all ages — and adults who secretly never grew up. He lives in Charlotte, NC with his adorably funny wife and two neurotic dogs. Pete was a theatre major in college and tries to keep the ‘suspension of disbelief’ in his life as much as he can.
Complete the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win!
Wednesday, May 18, 2016
A bit of news about Vessel...the publisher is reverting the rights back to me shortly, so if you've been meaning to download a copy, you may want to do that pretty quick! I may self-publish it in the future or work it into a larger book, but for now, it will soon become unavailable.
Many thanks to those who reviewed and enjoyed the book! I have always appreciated your support and rest assured, I'll keep on writing~
Sunday, May 15, 2016
Domino was my writing buddy. She loved to curl up on the bed next to me while I worked on my netbook. She wasn't much for hugs, but she enjoyed being by your side and loved roaming the countryside.
Kameko had the longest hair of the three sisters and she got a little tubby in her middle years, so she got a yearly haircut, which she hated. Here she is giving me the evil eye for one of those haircuts. This isn't the best picture of her, but I'm having trouble finding a better pic with hair at the moment. Kameko was a little persnickety. She didn't put up with any crap from kids or dogs. She was the boss.
I'm gonna miss those girls. They've been through a lot with us. They were older than my kids and grew up with them. They were my first children. Love you sweeties~