Guest Post: On Writing & Doing What You Love by Megan Cutler

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When a mysterious island appears off the coast of San Francisco, two intrepid academics risk everything to discover its secrets. Literature professor Catilen Taylor has struggled all her life with the ability to sense others’ emotions. The only person comfortable with her eccentricities is Damian Cooke, who studies an ancient art he calls ‘magic.’

Beyond the military barricade they discover a paradise unspoiled by modern advances, ruled by the enigmatic Sentomoru, who invites them to share the wonders of his bathhouse. But as the travelers strive to unravel the island’s secrets, Catilen senses danger stalking their every step.

Neither Catilen nor Damian can guess how long the island will remain on Earth. If they can’t solve its riddles, and untangle themselves from a growing web of strife quickly, they may be trapped wherever the island goes when it vanishes. Is the island the paradise it promises? Or does a nightmare lurk beneath the surface?

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People always want to know when you discovered you were a writer. Maybe some people have a giant ah-ha moment where it all clicks for them, but for me it was a slow process of discovery. In a way, writing was always a part of my life. People used to talk constantly about how much I wrote for assignments in elementary school. Like it was an expectation that any story I wrote would be twice as long as the rest – and, of course, I was eager to deliver.

Sometime in middle school, I was invited to partake in a special class centered around writing. It got me out of other classes I liked less, which was the main reason I liked it at the time. That and the teacher was incredibly laid back. He encouraged us to do whatever made us comfortable during writing time, which meant lying on the floor, sitting under tables, and sometimes being able to sit in the hall if we were quiet. All the things usually forbidden to school kids that age. Sometimes he would sit at the front of the room, play his guitar and sing us his songs while we wrote. Some of my fondest school memories came from that class.

I learned many of the basic principles of writing in that class. Always write in pen, our teacher told us, so that the words are permanent, concrete. Never cross them out so darkly you can’t see what you originally wrote (a single line through will do). Never delete, always save. Always date your work. Our teacher encouraged us to let words flow without judgment, to write whatever we felt like that day, whatever came into our minds or felt right. We didn’t talk much about editing in that class – those were lessons I learned later – but I did learn to let go, to write words without worrying about who would be looking over my shoulder in the days to come (a lesson I would have to re-learn in my adult years).

We shared our stories with the class. Mine was about a girl named V (or perhaps her name only started with a V and I can no longer remember it). She built a time machine. I can’t remember why she wanted to travel through time, but I do remember her parents were totally cool with it. As each person read their story aloud, we wrote comments on little slips of paper to share what we thought. I kept all the ones people wrote for me. I still have them tucked away in a folder.

By high school I was hiding writing notebooks underneath the notebooks I took my class notes in (not that it stopped me from getting into trouble). I had characters I turned to when I was angry and characters who comforted me when I was sad. Snow days were a great boon; a chance to write all day without interruption. I had grand plans by then, dreams of being a bestselling author by the time I was twenty-five.

Of course, life never works out the way you plan. I was closer to thirty when I published my first novel in 2015. But no matter what else I did with my life (college, working in IT), writing was always lurking in the background. Always the ultimate goal.

My first book, Island of Lost Forevers, is a tale about two college professors exploring a mysterious island that appears off the coast of San Francisco. They want to know where it came from and where it will go when it leaves. But though the island appears to be paradise, a nightmare may be lurking just beneath the surface. It has nothing to do with my high school scribbles but, without them, I never would have made it this far.

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You can find my work at megancutler.net. I post random musings every Monday and free short fiction every Friday. You can also hang out with me on Twitter and on Facebook. Island of Lost Forevers, and its two sequels, are available on Amazon and Kindle Unlimited; plus Island of Lost Forevers is getting a paperback in July!

Exciting reading, 

Jordan

 

 

Cover Reveal & Giveaway: Level Me Up by Lauren Helms

 Release Date: June 5, 2017
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The last thing Morgan Lawson is looking for when attending Comic-Con is love. But even prior to exchanging first words, Morgan is drawn to Dex, a drop-dead sexy gamer boy who lives and breathes video games. Before she realizes it, Morgan finds herself caught up in all things Dex.
 
Dex Roberts knows the moment he sees Morgan, he wants more. He falls hard and fast, but isn’t surprised when his job as a professional video gamer takes its toll on their relationship.

Once Morgan decides what truly makes her happy, there’s no time to waste. But without any warning, life threatens to destroy what both Morgan and Dex want most… each other.
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Author Lauren Helms has been an avid reader from a young age. After starting a book review site, that launched her fully into the book world, she decided to take the plunge and write her first novel. Since she was working for a video game strategy guide publisher at the time, she decided to mix what she knew best, video games and romance. Jumping all in, she joined NaNoWriMo and a month later had a 50K word first draft. Lauren lives in Indianapolis, IN with her video game playing husband, two little girl book nerds, and a little boy who will hopefully be a gamer boy too some day!
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Enter for your chance to win an ebook copy of Level Me Up

 

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Read on, 
Jordan

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cover Reveal: Perfect Match by Lyssa Layne

A note from Lyssa: I am happy to announce that I will be part of Paige Tyler’s Dallas Fire & Rescue Kindle World! My book, Perfect Match, will debut May 11 with some amazing authors that are contributing to the Kindle World, too. If you love firefighters, and I know you do, then you’ll love this Kindle World. Not to mention some of your favorite firefighters from Love is a Fire and Burst Into Flame *might* make an appearance… 
Cover Designer: Amanda Walker
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New to FDNY Engine 58, proby Paul Jefferson has no idea the expectations that the firefighters before him have set. He walks into his new job with an arrogance that’s sure to land him proby duty for the rest of his days but he has the professional skills to back his attitude. Loving every minute of his time with fire, Paul struggles to find his place in the FDNY brotherhood. Outside of the station, a true playboy at heart, he has no issues making connections, but there’s only one girl that holds his heart.

Paramedic Mariana Barbosa is new to the big city. Luckily, her path crosses with Paul Jefferson shortly after accepting her new position. The two instantly connect and become the best of roommates… or something like that. Behind closed doors, the two are the perfect couple without crossing any lines because Mariana is too afraid to risk their living situation to pursue what her heart is telling her she feels.

When Mariana feels betrayed by Paul, she jumps on the opportunity to date the handsome, good guy from work. Paul isn’t a fan of Mariana’s new boyfriend and starts to slack with Engine 58. Things don’t go as expected with Mariana’s new boyfriend and after she uses Paul to cover her issues, she pushes him further away until it may be too late for either of them to admit their true feelings.

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Lyssa Layne is first, and foremost, the proud momma to her precious daughter, AR. In addition to working full-time and being a mommy to AR, she is also an avid St. Louis Cardinals fan, a runner, blogger, and an infertility survivor.

Having watched one too many medical dramas and being inspired by author Rachelle Ayala, who introduced her to the world of indie writing, Lyssa decided to try her hand at writing a romance story. Her attempt turned into the Burning Lovesick series. You can find Lyssa’s own interests throughout her stories although all stories are fictional.

 
Paige Tyler’s DALLAS FIRE & RESCUE is part of Amazon’s Kindle Worlds, which means some of your favorite authors are now adding their characters and stories to her World.
 
DALLAS FIRE & RESCUE is an amazing world filled with the action and suspense of fighting fires and the drama of saving lives, combined with the intimacy of those moments when the heroes and heroines are brought together amid the danger. From battling huge blazes all across the city to saving accident victims to working with all forms of law-enforcement, DALLAS FIRE & RESCUE explores every facet of heroic action and romantic adventure. With heroic firefighters and life-saving paramedics, the possibilities for stories are limitless!
 
Kindle World Books can only be purchased on Amazon, but you don’t need a Kindle to read
them. You can download and read them on any device with the Kindle app. Kindle World Books are only available on Amazon US, but that doesn’t mean Non-US Residents can’t purchase them. For instructions click here.
 
Check out Paige Tyler’s DALLAS FIRE & RESCUE Series here!

Steamy reading, 

Jordan

Pre-Order Blitz: More Than Need You by Shayla Black

Kindle US/Kindle UK/Kindle CA/Kindle AU/Nook/ iBooks/Kobo/Goodreads

Release Date: June 13, 2017

Designer: Rachel Connolly

Photographer: Sara Eirew

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I’m Griffin Reed—cutthroat entrepreneur and competitive bastard. Trust is a four-letter word and everyone is disposable…except Britta Stone. Three years ago, she was my everything before I stupidly threw her away. I thought I’d paid for my sin in misery—until I learned we have a son. Finding out she’s engaged to a bore who’s rushing her to the altar pisses me off even more. I intend to win her back and raise our boy. I’ll have to get ruthless, of course. Luckily, that’s one of my most singular talents.

Sixty days. That’s what I’m asking the gritty, independent single mother to give me—twenty-four/seven. Under my roof. And if I have my way, in my bed. Britta says she wants nothing to do with me. But her body language and passionate kisses make her a liar. Now all I have to do is coax her into surrendering to the old magic between us. Once I have her right where I want her, I’ll do whatever it takes to prove I more than need her.

This book is the second in the More Than Words series. The books are companions, not serials, meaning that backstory, secondary characters, and other elements will be easier to relate to if you read the installments in order, but the main romance of each book is a stand-alone.

This book contains lines that may make you laugh, events that may make you cry, and scenes that will probably have you squirming in your seat. Don’t worry about cliffhangers. HEA guaranteed! (Does not contain elements of BDSM or romantic suspense.)

Kindle US/Kindle UK/Kindle CA/Kindle AU/Nook/iBooks/Kobo

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Shayla Black is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of more than fifty novels. For nearly twenty years, she’s written contemporary, erotic, paranormal, and historical romances via traditional, independent, foreign, and audio publishers. Her books have sold millions of copies and been published in a dozen languages.

Raised an only child, Shayla occupied herself with lots of daydreaming, much to the chagrin of her teachers. In college, she found her love for reading and realized that she could have a career publishing the stories spinning in her imagination. Though she graduated with a degree in Marketing/Advertising and embarked on a stint in corporate America to pay the bills, her heart has always been with her characters. She’s thrilled that she’s been living her dream as a full-time author for the past eight years.

Shayla currently lives in North Texas with her wonderfully supportive husband, her teenage daughter, and two spoiled tabbies. In her “free” time, she enjoys reality TV, reading, and listening to an eclectic blend of music.

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Keep reading, 

Jordan

Cover Reveal & Giveaway: Stand by A.L. Jackson

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Release Date: May 22, 2017
Photographer: Wander Aguiar
Models: Tyler Halligan & Madelyn DeSantis
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From NYT & USA Today Bestselling Author A.L. Jackson comes the next seductive, unforgettable Bleeding Stars Stand-Alone Novel…
 
Zachary Kennedy has never been known as a fighter, but he’ll never regret fighting for her…
 
I’m Zee Kennedy.
Quiet. Reserved. Predictable.
When my brother died, everyone thought I was just the good guy who stepped up to take his place in the band.
 
No one knew what I was hiding. The one thing I’ve been fighting for.
 
For six years, I’ve never lost focus.
 
Not until one chance encounter with Alexis Kensington.
 
Now she’s become my greatest temptation.
I knew better than to touch her, but now that I’ve had a taste, I can’t get enough.
Her kiss becomes my air. Her body my salvation.
 
She needed a savior and somehow she became mine.
 
Taking her was a betrayal. But keeping her means risking everything.
One look at Alexis Kensington, and I know she’s worth the fight.
Will my past continue to keep me down or will I finally find the strength to pull myself up and Stand!

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ExcerptHis voice was low. The word might have been a question had it not glided across my skin like familiarity and warmth. “Alexis.”

I barely nodded, my response a whisper as my heart fluttered and sped. “Alexis.”

His gaze dipped for a moment, tracing me head to toe. As if he needed reassurance I was here. Something about it felt so intimate and private, as if maybe when he’d chipped away that piece of my soul he somehow knew he held it, too.

“I hope it’s okay I’m here,” he said, forcing my attention back to his eyes.

A lump grew heavy in my throat and I swallowed around it, nodding as I tried to find my voice. “Of course it’s okay.”

Maybe I should have been hearing warning bells. A thousand caution flags tossed in the air and raining down around me. Because there was something about this brilliant boy that screamed trouble and mayhem. Undoubtedly, this man wore his own beautiful brand of destruction.

And I was the fool who always seemed to run straight for it. Diving right into the middle of it without having the first clue what was waiting for me.

“I’m Zachary Kennedy. Friends call me Zee,” he said, shifting on his feet as if he were wondering what he was doing here.

I could feel the pull of the soft smile at the side of my mouth. “I know who you are.”

“Is that so?” he asked. Something about it rang with a tease.

I nodded.

Of course I did. He was the drummer for one of the biggest rock bands in the world.

And I realized that probably put both of us at a disadvantage. No doubt he had women throwing themselves at him any time he walked off a stage or into a room. Wanting a taste of fame or maybe a name to drop, salivating over this boy simply for who he was.

It didn’t help he had to be the most gorgeous man I’d ever seen.

But this was different. The staggering need I felt to know him more. Not the boy pinned to Pinterest boards labeling him a sexy, tattooed bad boy. Not the boy splashed across the tabloids with their speculations and judgement.

The real man.

This man made up of flesh and bone. The man who rushed into an alley in the middle of the night to defend a complete stranger. The man who’d tenderly rocked me in his arms while I’d felt the controlled rage radiating from his body.

The one who now stood in my doorway, spinning my mind with how he could both look so powerful and vulnerable.

My insides shook, and I took a step back and widened my door. “Would you like to come in?”

A smile crept to his mouth that would be my complete undoing, this tug of full, soft lips framed by his beard. He tilted his head to the side. “You’re awful brave to be inviting a complete stranger into your house.”

I lifted my chin and met his gaze. “A complete stranger who put his life on the line. A stranger who stood between me and a gun. You could have died, and I very well might have if it wasn’t for you. Trust comes in a lot of forms, and I’m pretty sure you’ve already earned mine.”

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Grand Prize: Bleeding Stars Signed Book Bundle

(includes first 5 books in Bleeding Stars Series)

Second Prize: $25 Amazon Gift Card

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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A.L. Jackson is the New York Times & USA Today Bestselling author of contemporary romance. She writes emotional, sexy, heart-filled stories about boys who usually like to be a little bit bad. Her bestselling series include THE REGRET SERIES, CLOSER TO YOU, as well as the newest BLEEDING STARS novels. Watch for the next installment STAND, coming Spring 2017. If she’s not writing, you can find her hanging out by the pool with her family, sipping cocktails with her friends, or of course with her nose buried in a book.
 
Be sure not to miss new releases and sales from A.L. Jackson – Sign up to receive her newsletter http://smarturl.it/NewsFromALJackson or text “aljackson” to 24587 to receive short but sweet updates on all the important news.
Happy reading, 
Jordan

Promo & Giveaway: Remembrance by Heather Hildenbrand

This is a spin-off of the Dirty Blood series and while it’s more fun to come in already knowing a bit about these characters, you do NOT have to read Dirty Blood first. You can just jump in here!

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She’s the cure that could save him. If only she could remember how.

Two years ago, 20 year-old Samantha Knight experienced a life-altering trauma. Unfortunately, she can’t remember what it was. Previously outgoing, fun, and carefree—it’s as if someone flipped a switch on Sam’s insides. Now, she’s afraid of everything, socially awkward, and convinced she’s going crazy. As Beyoncé would say, she woke up like this. Sam tries her best to juggle college classes, work, and the nosiest roommate ever, but behind the curtain, Sam’s life is all about keeping a firm grip on her own mind. And life is kicking her ass.

Alex Channing has only one enemy in this world: werewolves. Born and raised to fight in the supernatural military, he has become an expert at hunting and killing rabid werewolves. But when Alex is bitten and infected, he finds himself racing against a ticking clock for his own survival.

Alex’s search for a cure leads him finally to an oracle in a seaside town in California. And she gives him the reading of a lifetime. The key to his cure is a girl who forgets things, cries spontaneously, and might just be insane. And the only way she can save him is to do the one thing Alex knows is impossible: she has to remember.

Book 1 in the highly anticipated Heart Lines series, a spin-off of the bestselling and award-winning Dirty Blood series. Note: you do NOT have to read Dirty Blood first. You can start here!

giveawayI’m giving away some goodies to help celebrate! (There will be more giveaways in the FB group so make sure to find us there too.)

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GRAND PRIZE: custom bracelet + signed swag + e-ARC of Inheritance (book 2 in the Heart Lines Series) by Heather Hildenbrand

2nd PRIZE: e-ARC of Inheritance (book 2 in the Heart Lines Series) by Heather Hildenbrand

Ends 3/5/17 ~ Open Internationally

 
a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Sexy reading, 

Jordan

Release Day Blitz: Healing Love by Tammy Faith

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         Sleeping with your teammate’s girlfriend is not the best way to start the season, and the guilt is eating Mark Anderson alive.

        The best way to erase that awful night from his memory? A one-night stand with a blonde bombshell.
     Besides vlogging and make-up, sleeping with jocks is Savinne’s favorite pastime, but Mark is nothing like what she expected.
       Neither one is looking for forever, but one night turns into two, and then into three, four, five…
        Until their pasts knock on their doors.
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Her bright green eyes pop against the smudged black mascara. There’s so much pain hidden inside those liquid pools, and I want to unravel her.
I’d like to soften up her edges till they’re so blurry I’m the only thing she can focus on, the only thing she can see. I need to light a fire where her heart has been left cold and hardened, rearranging her broken pieces around mine in a way I can make them fit together. I want to crawl inside of her so deep she can’t use me like she’s used to and then get rid of me and forget we happened.
 

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Tammy Faith is a twenty-one-year-old reader and writer. Her books are very heavy on the romance, and sometimes even a little steamy. She has a gigantic family she adores and an unrequited love for food. (Also, her addiction to cute animals is borderline creepy. #sorrynotsorry.)

 

Keep reading,

Jordan