Sunday, October 22, 2017

Audiobook Blog Tour with Giveaway: Remembrance (The Transcend Time Saga #1) by Michelle Madow

Author: Michelle Madow

Narrator: Andrea Emmes

Series: The Transcend Time Saga, Book 1

Length: 7 hours 5 minutes

Publisher: Dreamscape Publishing

Released: Jul. 31, 2017

Genre: Clean Romance


They're reincarnated soulmates. So why is he pushing her away?
Lizzie Davenport has been reincarnated from 1815, England ... but she doesn't know it until she meets her soul mate from the past and he triggers her memories to gradually return.
When Drew Carmichael moves to Lizzie's town, Lizzie feels a connection to him, like she knows him. But he wants nothing to do with her. She knows she should let go of her fascination with Drew, but that gets harder and harder as memories of her past life return. And the more Lizzie remembers, the more she's determined to unravel the mysteries of the past ... no matter how deadly those secrets might be.
A romance with a fantasy twist that listeners of all ages will love!

Michelle Madow is a USA Today bestselling author of fast paced fantasy novels that will leave you turning the pages wanting more! She grew up in Maryland and now lives in Florida. Some of her favorite things are: reading, traveling, pizza, time travel, Broadway musicals, and spending time with friends and family. Someday, she hopes to travel the world for a year on a cruise ship.
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Narrator Bio
Audible Best Selling Narrator, Andrea Emmes was born in Hollywood, FL and grew up in both Tennessee and Rhode Island, started her career in musical theater. Cutting her teeth at The Trinity Arts Center in Rhode Island, Andrea eventually made her way to Orlando and began her eclectic career singing/dancing in various shows at Walt Disney World, Universal Studios, Pirates' Dinner Adventure, performing as a magician's assistant, headlining on the Las Vegas Strip and touring Los Angeles as an L.A. Award winning artist with her album, "I'm On My Way". Having worked in tv, film and video games, Andrea, a total Book Nerd, now enjoys narrating audiobooks at her home studio in San Jose, California. Her wide range of character voices and dynamic/emotionally invested performances has reviewers and listeners alike commenting on how she effortlessly pulls listeners in, and has versatility and charisma.
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I did not get to review the audiobook, but you can read my review of the book from a few years ago HERE.
 
Q and A with Narrator Andrea Emmes
  • When did you know you wanted to be an audiobook narrator?
    • Well, I kind of fell into audiobooks in 2014 and haven’t looked back since. I’ve been a professional performer (actor/singer/dancer/VO) for over 20 years but in 2006 I got hurt in a stunt show and had to retire due to a disabling pain disorder called Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy aka CRPS. I’ve always been an avid reader and during my recovery I read about 8-12 books a week. I went back to college and got a degree in Game Art and Design and was a game designer for Disney Interactive for a couple of years After the layoffs, I had to figure out what I should do next as I can no longer dance, etc. anymore and my husband suggested I look into audiobooks. He’s brilliant and I researched it, set up my equipment, studied with coaches and have enjoyed every minute of it!!
  • Did you find it difficult to “break into” audiobook narration? What skill/tool helped you the most when getting started?
    • That’s a great question. Yes and No. When looking into how to get into audiobooks, I found ACX. Audiobook Exchange which is owned by Amazon/Audible. It’s a really great marketplace for self-published indie authors/small publishers to put their books up for auditions and for narrators to find work. This is where I got my start. It was great cutting my teeth on the amazing books that were listed but since this is a full time thing for me, I’m always looking how to grow my business and extend my reach as a narrator. So, I started looking into how I could work with the big publishers. This takes some time as there are a ton of amazing talent out there that are vying to be noticed and cast. So, I immediately starting coaching with Sean Allen Pratt, who is an incredible coach and began learning techniques for Non Fiction and narration in general which really gave me a solid foundation moving forward. I still hear Sean’s advice in my head while in the booth 3 years later!! I’ve also studied with Paul Alan Ruben, Patrick Fraley, PJ Ochlan, Joel Froomkin, Andi Arndt. Each one offered such nuggets of wisdom that has made me a better narrator and I look forward to learning from other coaches as you should always be honing your craft. Each book I do, I learn so much and finally this year, after networking, working on my technique and studio sound, I’ve started working with some publishers and am so excited to see what lies ahead!
  • A lot of narrators seem to have a background in theatre. Is that something you think is essential to a successful narration career?
    • I, too, have a background in theatre and though I think that it was 100% helpful for me in bringing those acting techniques to my narration, it’s not a MUST. But it does help. Audiobook Narration is an acting job. You are cast to not only bring the book to life audibly, but you must vocally and emotionally embody each character, the tone of the book and entertain at the same time. It’s no easy feat. So for those who don’t have any acting background and want to be a narrator, it can be learned with really great coaching. I know many successful narrators who didn’t come from the acting world but put in so much work to be the best at what they do.
  • What type of training have you undergone?
    • I’ve been studied the art of acting and performing for more than half my life. I’ve taken singing lessons to not only bring a higher quality to my singing voice, but to help with breath control, mic techinques and vocal upkeep. I’ve studied with the best of the best for voice over work for commercials, animation, video games and of course audiobooks. What’s interesting is that the technique for voice over (commercial/animation/videogames) is different for audiobooks. There is a different approach you need to take with NonFiction (which is still acting) and with Fiction. How you approach different character voices but not be over the top cartoony, keeping the narration genuine and engaging to keep the listener immersed. Sometimes, I enjoy the training just as much as the actual narration.
  • How do you manage to avoid burn-out? What do you do to maintain your enthusiasm for narrating?
    • That is a great question, but narration can be tedious. Especially because you have to learn a ton of tech and engineering besides just speaking into the mic. It’s important to take lots of small breaks. Especially because it’s not good to be sitting or standing for too long. Because of my disability, I have to narrate sitting down, so it’s important for me to stretch or lay down every once in a while. Also, it can be hard to maintain your enthusiasm because, yes, I have a wicked cool job that I LOVE, but sometimes it’s hard to get into the emotions of the book. But I remind myself that I’m so blessed to do what I do; to have authors and publishers who believe and trust in me to bring their book to life and I don’t take that honor lightly. If I’m struggling or just not feeling it, I’ll step away, play some video games or watch TV or go for a walk and then come back fresh and get back to work!! As long as I hit my deadline, my daily schedule is flexible.
  • Are you an audiobook listener? What about the audiobook format appeals to you?
    • I AM! I love them. I’ve always loved story time as a child and in a way, it brings me back to when my parents would read to me. Audiobooks allow you to dive into the world of a good book and amazing characters, hear them come to life with the different voices, etc. and just let your imagination soar. When I’m listening, I can see the world that the narrator is describing. Also, it’s great to keep me entertained while I’m driving, cleaning or going for a walk. I’m a book addict and a total audiophile!
  • What are your favorite and least favorite parts of narrating an audiobook?
    • Hmm. I think my favorite parts of narrating is when I first read the book, make all of my notes and really work on the characters. I also really love emotional stories, where the characters are going through a hard time, some kind of trauma, or whatever and I can dive into what they are feeling. It can be hard emotionally on me as sometimes I’ve had to stop recording because I have to ugly cry for a moment, but it’s so fulfilling to actualize these moments in a hopefully genuine manner that will touch the listener. The best feeling is when the book is complete and gets approved ☺. My least favorite part of narration would be if I have to edit/master my own book. That is a very tedious process and whenever I can afford to high a professional engineer I jump at the chance. (plus, they do a way better job than I do so they are worth every penny!)
  • What would you say are your strongest narration abilities?
    • Wow. That’s a hard question. I think for me, really getting into the mindset of a character, especially an angst-y young adult character and bringing them to life in a believable way is something I feel confident with.
  • Is there a particular genre you feel unsuited for? Have you ever declined a project because you didn’t think you were right for it?
    • I honestly am happy to narrate any genre, but because I have a youthful voice, Young Adult and Children’s books are a strength for me and what I do mostly. And I love it. I read young adult books for pleasure so it’s pretty awesome to be able to narrate them! I have declined a few projects because I didn’t feel I was right for it. And often times, I’d submit other narrators that I thought would be better suited for the book.
 

 

Remembrance, Book 1

Oct. 22nd: The Audiobookworm Loves Great Reads Lisa Loves Literature  
Oct. 23rd: AudioSpy The Writing Train Lilly's Book World Hall Ways Blog  
Oct. 24th: Jazzy Book Reviews  
Oct. 25th: Literature Approved Dab of Darkness Audiobook Reviews  
Oct. 26th: Haddie's Haven It's Novel to Me The Book Junkie Reads . . .  
Oct. 27th: Chapter Break Here's to Happy Endings  
Oct. 28th: The Book Addict's Reviews Ginger Mom and the Kindle Quest My Creatively Random Life

Vengeance, Book 1.5

Oct. 29th: The Audiobookworm Haddie's Haven Lisa Loves Literature Lilly's Book World Jazzy Book Reviews  
Oct. 30th: AudioSpy The Writing Train Chapter Break Here's to Happy Endings The Book Junkie Reads . . . Hall Ways Blog  
Oct. 31st: The Book Addict's Reviews Literature Approved Ginger Mom and the Kindle Quest My Creatively Random Life

Timeless, Book 2

Nov. 1st: The Audiobookworm AudioSpy The Writing Train  
Nov. 2nd: Lisa Loves Literature  
Nov. 3rd: Lilly's Book World The Book Junkie Reads . . .  
Nov. 4th: Up 'Til Dawn Book Blog  
Nov. 5th: Haddie's Haven Jazzy Book Reviews  
Nov. 6th: The Book Addict's Reviews Literature Approved Chapter Break Here's to Happy Endings Hall Ways Blog  
Nov. 7th: Ginger Mom and the Kindle Quest My Creatively Random Life

 
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Saturday, October 21, 2017

Blog Tour with Giveaway: Guy Hater by J. Sterling

Today we have the blog tour for GUY HATER by J. Sterling! Check it out and grab your copy today!


Title: GUY HATER  
Author: J. Sterling  
Genre: New Adult Romance  
Release Day: October 9th, 2017

About Guy Hater

From New York Times Bestseller, J. Sterling, comes a sexy new STANDALONE romance novel.

Frank Fisher is quiet, pensive, and sexy as hell. He's also stuck in a loveless relationship, bound by a promise he made years ago. It's one he intends to keep, no matter the cost.

The night Claudia walks into his bar, both his life and his perspective are forever changed. She's feisty, strong, independent and everything he never knew he needed. She's also everything he never knew he wanted, and now he's torn.

Will Frank follow his heart, or will guilt and obligation continue to rule his life? Choices aren't always easy, especially when you're a man, and Frank's indecision may cost him more than he's willing to lose.

Buy Now

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon AU | Amazon CA

Excerpt:

Once the bar was cleared out and locked up for the night and the rest of the staff sent home, Ryan started in on me. The little shit had been waiting hours to have this discussion.

“Can we please have a serious conversation?” He washed a glass as he spoke, but his eyes met mine, and they looked almost sad.

When Nick stopped what he was doing and inched closer to where Ryan and I stood, I played dumb.

“What are we getting serious about?”

“You know what,” Nick said, but Ryan waved him off.

“Let me handle this,” he whispered to Nick.

“Um, I can hear you, you know?”

“Of course I know,” Ryan snapped. “Now, listen. There’s something I can’t figure out, okay? And I don’t want you getting all pissed off and closing up on us when I ask you.”

I groaned, wishing that Ryan would cut to the chase already and stop beating around the bush like a fucking girl. “Spit it out. I can handle whatever it is you’re too chickenshit to ask.”

He dropped the glass into the soapy water and it splashed all over his shirt. Thank God he’d put it back on after last call. “What’s the deal with you and Shelby?”

That was it? That was his big dramatic question?

“What kind of question is that? How am I supposed to answer that?”

Nick said slowly, “I think what Ryan’s trying to say is, we can see that you’re not happy. We don’t understand why you stay.”

I wasn’t sure how to answer that question, or if I wanted to. I’d kept everything to myself for so long, not wanting to burden anyone with my mess, but maybe it was time to unload. I wasn’t good at asking for help, but maybe that’s what these two were here for. God knew I’d do anything for either of them, and I knew they’d do the same for me. I just hated the very idea of needing anyone.


Giveaway

About the Author  

I got fired from my last job.  

It's true.   

I know you're sitting there thinking, "Jenn, how could anyone in their right mind fire someone like you?" And I'd love to give you a good reason, but the truth is that sometimes being all sorts of awesome isn't fun for other people. They don't always tend to like it. lol   

So I picked my pride off the floor, bought a laptop and started writing my first book. And you know what I realized? Writing stories that meant something to me was a million times better than working my ass off for someone who didn't really care about anything other than the bottom line.   

My soul has never felt more satisfied.   

My heart has never been more full.  

I've never worked so hard in my life, but I love every second of it. I truly do. 

It is SO worth it.  

All of it.   

Every moment.  

The journey it took to get to this point- I wouldn't change a thing.



Friday, October 20, 2017

Author Interview with Giveaway: The Girl Who Saved Ghosts by K.C. Tansley


Book info:
Title:  The Girl Who Saved Ghosts
Author:  K.C. Tansley
Publication date: October 17th, 2017
Genres: Mystery, Time-Travel, Young Adult
Synopsis:
She tried to ignore them. Now she might risk everything to save them.
After a summer spent in a haunted castle—a summer in which she traveled through time to solve a murder mystery—Kat is looking forward to a totally normal senior year at McTernan Academy. Then the ghost of a little girl appears and begs Kat for help, and more unquiet apparitions follow. All of them are terrified by the Dark One, and it soon becomes clear that that this evil force wants Kat dead.
Searching for help, Kat leaves school for the ancestral home she’s only just discovered. Her friend Evan, whose family is joined to her own by an arcane history, accompanies her. With the assistance of her eccentric great aunts and a loyal family ghost, Kat soon learns that she and Evan can only fix the present by traveling into the past.
As Kat and Evan make their way through nineteenth-century Vienna, the Dark One stalks them, and Kat must decide what she’s willing to sacrifice to save a ghost.

Author Interview:
 1.  What does your writing process look like? Do you know the whole story when you start?  Or do you just start writing and go with it (seat of the pants writing)?  If you plan it out, how do you do that?  Outline, notecards, post-it-notes, etc.?

The pre-writing time is when I kindle the inferno of inspiration. I call it storystorming. It’s usually 1-3 months of serious contemplation and tinkering with plotting. Fleshing out the characters in my mind. Learning their backstory. Uncovering their motives. Following a plot thread to its conclusion and seeing if that’s a route I want my characters to travel. It’s like a Choose Your Own Adventure Book playing out in my mind. When something feels settled, I take notes on that detail—could be on a Post-it, a napkin, a text message I send myself on my phone, but it all gets funneled into a Word document of notes.

Once I do all that, I write a synopsis that is two to three page long before I begin drafting. It is a roadmap for the story and links the beginning to the middle to the end. It gives me big-picture focus as I write, but also freedom to play around with the individual scenes. I daydream the opening scene for a few weeks before I’m confident that I’ve figured out how the story opens.

When I start writing the first draft, I set a 2,000 word a day requirement 5 days a week (about 2-4 hours typing each day). At the end of each writing session, I always write a couple sentences about what comes next. It really helps keep things flowing, so my mind turns over ideas about what happens next all night. In a month, that gives me approximately 40,000 words. I aim for 60,000-80,000 words in a first draft. I give myself 8 weeks to get the first draft done. Then I do a quick read through and polish up major issues.

The first draft gets put aside for at least 2-3 months. Then I come back to it with fresh eyes and do a massive revision before anyone ever sees it.

2.  How do you come up with your ideas for your stories?

 
Inspiration comes from everywhere. It can be a place I visit, a snippet of conversation I overhear, even an interaction with someone. Sometimes other stories inspire me too. 


Lots of times I play the what if game to build out my plot and my world and my stakes. What if my character time-traveled, and what if she fell into someone else’s body, and what if that person didn’t know she was there, but she could eavesdrop on the other person’s thoughts? And what if the longer she stayed in the past, the more time she began to lose and risked disappearing forever?

3.  How long have you been writing?

 
I’ve written poetry and attempts at novels since I was a kid. I wrote my first book from 2000-2002 and I happily keep it under my bed. It’s an experimental memoir, interspersing journal entries and poetry. I did show it to an agent once and she was kind and helpful, but I’m not sure that book will ever be for public consumption. It was something I wrote for myself. 


I wrote my first draft of The Girl Who Ignored Ghosts in 2006 and that was published in 2015. So, I would say I’ve been writing for publication since 2006.

4.  What tips do you have for aspiring writers?

 
 It’s never easy. And it’s rarely fair. So let those expectations go right now and you will have a much happier time trying to get published. Write what you want to write and learn you craft and keep trying. Eventually you’ll find your place.

5.  What are your favorite:

Books/authors/genres: 
 

Books: This is a hard one! These are some of  my favorite recent reads: Why We Broke Up by Daniel Handler, The City of Glass by Cassandra Clare, Last Sacrifice by Richelle Mead, The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman, Invincible by Dawn Metcalf, Ensnared by A.G. Howard, New Moon by Stephenie Meyer, The Fault in Our Stars by John Green, Last Breath by Rachel Caine, The Awakening of Sunshine Girl by Paige McKenzie, Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher
 

Authors: Richelle Mead, A.G. Howard, Charlaine Harris, John Green, Neil Gaiman, Cassandra Clare, Rachel Caine, Paige Shelton, Ransom Riggs
 

Genre: Paranormal and Mystery
 

Movies/TV Shows: The Originals, Shadowhunters, Riverdale, Vampire Diaries
 
Music: Florence and the Machine, Imagine Dragons, Tori Amos, Taylor Swift, Amy McDonald, Blind Pilots, Birdy, Bastille, Fun, Ingrid Michelson, Sara Bareilles, Passenger, Garbage
 

Food/Writing snack: I never eat at my computer or when I’m writing.  I find it distracting and prefer to be focused on one thing at a time. 
Author Bio:
K.C. Tansley lives with her warrior lapdog, Emerson, and two quirky golden retrievers on a hill somewhere in Connecticut. She tends to believe in the unbelievables—spells, ghosts, time travel—and writes about them.
Never one to say no to a road trip, she’s climbed the Great Wall twice, hopped on the Sound of Music tour in Salzburg, and danced the night away in the dunes of Cape Hatteras. She loves the ocean and hates the sun, which makes for interesting beach days. The Girl Who Ignored Ghosts is her award-winning and bestselling first novel in The Unbelievables series.
As Kourtney Heintz, she also writes award winning cross-genre fiction for adults.

GIVEAWAY!

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Blog Tour: I Hate Myself for Loving You (Scorned Lovers Series) by Simone Harlow

Title: I Hate Myself for Loving You
Series: Scorned Lovers
Author: Simone Harlow
Genre: Contemporary Romance 
Release Date: October 10, 2017
  
I Hate Myself For Loving You hit all my buttons for a 5-star book.” ~Badass Bloggettes
Rockstar Declan Shaw has everything. The talent that has made him a superstar. Golden God looks that ensures he can have any woman he wants. Money that lets him afford anything he wants. And fame that has garnered him a stalker. So he hires the one thing he doesn’t have. A bodyguard. A sexy, no-nonsense bodyguard who isn’t impressed with his talent, his looks, his money, or his fame.
Former Army Officer Jane Peterson is a battle hardened soldier. She is ready for anything. Even playing his fake girlfriend. What she isn’t ready for is Declan Shaw. The man who hides his caring nature behind his seductive jaded fa├žade. For her failure is not an option. She will wrangle the rock star love God by any means necessary.
What neither one of them counted on was the sizzling attraction between them. One that could jeopardize Declan’s life or expose Jane’s long held secrets.

Once upon a time Simone Harlow decided to write a book. She never understood why she had to write a book she just did. She has a great life. A family that loves her. Friends she can mother. And a dog who thinks she’s his reason for living. (No, really, he told her so.) She should be content. But alas she still had to write that book. So she did, and it was the beginning of an excellent adventure.

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