Book Spotlight – The Kitchen Brigade – Laurie Boris – Dystopian Fiction/Women’s Fiction #Indiesrock

Title:  The Kitchen Brigade

Author:  Laurie Boris

Genre:  Dystopian fiction/women’s fiction

Main character description (short). Valerie is petite and pretty, with chestnut curls. But beyond that seemingly innocuous exterior, she’s resourceful and much tougher than she would have believed before her world went to hell.

Synopsis: The Kitchen Brigade is a dystopian novel set in a future America torn apart by civil war and Russian occupation.

Valerie Kipplander is a talented culinary student and daughter of the assassinated secretary of state. When the regime discovers her in a refugee camp jail, she’s forced to cook for the Russian general whose army is occupying New York.

But being part of the head chef’s kitchen brigade is only a different kind of prison. The safety that had been promised her is an illusion. The resistance wants her to join them. And one of the guards wants her dead.

She knows she has to act. To rebel against her Russian captors could prove deadly, but how long can she serve the men destroying her country?

Brief Excerpt 250 words: Valerie might have been in this house before. During her childhood, perhaps, when her father the diplomat and her mother the French heiress attended parties and teas at which Valerie was made to wear uncomfortable dresses and sit still, hands folded like sleeping doves in her lap. But as Chef took her to where she presumed she would sleep, Valerie didn’t dare ask who owned the house, or where the previous owners had gone. Since the war started she’d learned many things she would have preferred not to know.

“The general rises early,” Chef said over her shoulder. “So we rise earlier. You will learn the routine.” She paused in a corridor and rapped on a door. A woman swung it open as if waiting breathlessly for the knock.

“Yes, Ma—Chef.” She looked to be in her early twenties. Her honey-blond hair, scraped into a severe ponytail, accentuated her rounded face and long nose. She was tall, her shoulders slumped slightly forward as if she’d spent many years trying to hide her height, or the fact of her existence, but her frosty blue eyes—incongruous against her olive-toned skin—went to Chef Svetlana as if the sun and moon rose and set by her will. Then her jaw tightened as she caught sight of Valerie.

“This is Two,” Chef said to Valerie. “She’ll show you the way things work.” Then Chef Svetlana paused a moment, as if mentally sliding a few puzzle pieces into place. “You’ll answer to ‘Three’ and nothing else. It’s easier that way, and the sooner you get accustomed to that, the better.”

Why should readers buy this book (50 words max)?

It’s a fast-moving, entertaining story about what unites us even as the world divides us. It’s full of cooking—it revolves around a band of female chefs—snappy dialogue and unforgettable, broken characters seeking redemption. If you like adult dystopian stories without the apocalypse, you might enjoy The Kitchen Brigade.

TheKitchenBrigade_FinalKindleV2small.jpg

 

Links etc.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/laurie.boris.author/
Twitter:  @LaurieBoris
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Laurie-Boris/e/B005I551QA
Website:  http://laurieboris.com

 

 

Book Spotlight – When the Morning Comes – mystery/romantic suspense

Title:  When the Morning Comes (Book One in the Land’s End Series)

Author:  S.W. Frontz

Genre: mystery, romantic suspense

Main character description (short).  Samantha Patrick-mid-fifties-wife, mother, grandmother. She is a survivor, having lived through her mother’s savage murder, and  being kidnapped and raped as a teenager.

Synopsis:  Samantha and her husband, Sheriff Andy Patrick live on the quaint island of Land’s End.  They moved here thirty-seven years ago to start a new life after Samantha’s father committed a horrible crime that got Samantha’s mother murdered and Samantha kidnapped and raped.  Samantha had kept a secret all these years but when her past comes back to haunt her, there’s no way to keep her secret without putting her family in danger.

Brief Excerpt: Samantha Patrick’s eyes popped open and she sat up abruptly in bed, breathing like a locomotive.  She looked around the room, disoriented, not sure if she were still in the old warehouse or in her room.  She sat there for a minute.  She put her hand out to her right, patting the bed to see if her husband Andy was there.  Touching the softness of his white hair, she sighed in relief.  It was only the nightmare.  Thankful that she was safe in her own bed she glanced at the clock.  The red numbers glowed at her.  One fifteen a.m. Sighing, she reached behind her to plump the pillows and she settled back down under the covers.  No more sleep for her.  She had gotten another letter this morning.  It said: “I’m watching you.”  She didn’t want to disturb Andy so she turned onto her left side to wait for the morning to come.

Why should readers buy this book? It has something for everyone, mystery, crime, romance,  and a pretty decent ending with the promise of more to come.

 

book-cover-1

http://amzn.to/2i1t9Yy

https://twitter.com/swfrontzauthor

https://www.instagram.com/s.frontzauthor/

http://www.swfrontzauthor.com/

Boo! Authors – Erin McGowan – #Horror

Who are you?

Sure, we can start with the most open-ended question of all time.  My name is Erin, my nickname was Lark once upon a time, but you can call me anything, so long as you don’t call me late to dinner.  I’m an accountant/administrative assistant/whatever-the-hell-my-boss-tells-me-I-am by day and a writer and very occasionally editor by night.  I love to read, travel, read, drink coffee, read, take walks on the bead, and read.

Tell us about your Boo! story:

I have one story about friendship, life, love, and scary shit.  My second story is about brotherhood, friendship, love, bikes, and more scary shit.  Seriously, though, one of my stories is about two best friends who go on an impromptu Halloween road trip and find more than they bargained for.  The other story is about a motorcycle club and the lengths they will go to in order to keep people safe.  I just now realized that both of my stories deal with travel and unbreakable bonds, but that’s not too surprising, because those are both things I value immensely.

What else have your written?

I’ve written short stories in “Music Speaks” and the other three “Boo” books.  I’ve also written two full-length novels.  “Aftermath” is a contemporary fiction novel that I am still half-tempted to entitle “Everybody Dies” just so I don’t have to give a summary of the book.  “The Mage: Awakening” is a young adult urban fantasy book about a young woman who learns how to control her magical powers and tries to fit in in a new school and the mage society.  It’s the first in a series.  I hope the second book will be out soon.

What frightens you the most?

Being alone, or letting the people I love down.  And clowns.

Have you ever seen a ghost?

I have.  It was in an apartment, and it was massively angry.

What are you reading at the moment?

I’m just about to start “Dead Zone” by Stephen King.  I thought, given the election, it was fitting.

If you could meet any living famous person for dinner who would it be and what would you eat?

I would love to meet Jimmy Buffet.  I don’t think I could bring myself to say anything, but I’d be in Heaven.  We’d eat some sort of fish, I’m sure.  I’d let him choose.

If you could meet any dead famous person who would be and what would you have to eat?

I have to pick one?  Did you ever see the Gilmore Girls episode where they had all their friends come eat a fancy dinner at the Inn?  I want to do that with dead people.  Shakespeare and Byron and Amelia Earhart and Dorothy Parker and Sid Vicious and David Bowe and Rich Meyer and Cina Clark and Brian Wilson and so many more that I can’t even keep them straight.  People I love, people I admire, and people I aspire to be like would all be there.

Which book do you see as the most influential in your life?

Too many to choose from.  I would say Jim Butcher and all of his books changed my life in a major way, though.

In the zombie apocalypse what would be your weapon of choice with which to defend yourself?

I want Harley’s mallet and giant thews.

 

Social media links etc.

Aftermath: https://www.amazon.com/Aftermath-ebook/dp/B00DPYX64A/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1374341129&sr=8-1&keywords=Erin+McGowan

The Mage: Awakening: https://www.amazon.com/Mage-Awakening-Erin-McGowan-ebook/dp/B01BIR0AJO/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

Music Speaks: https://www.amazon.com/Music-Speaks-LB-Clark-ebook/dp/B008C88QTE/ref=la_B008CBE1H2_1_6?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1478144407&sr=1-6

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ErinMWrites/?ref=br_rs

Lonestar Book Works: http://www.lonestarbookworks.info/

 

Editor Interview Number Thirteen – Jamie Burgess

Hi, welcome to the Library of Erana and thank you for talking to us today.

Please introduce yourself. My name is Jamie Burgess and I am a stay at home mom of 3 girls.  I absolutely love to read and will read just about anything.  I am just getting started in the freelance editing business.

How did you get into this line of work? I chose to start editing due to the vast number of books I was trying to read that had obviously been self-edited, they are often very hard reads.  As I read I am editing in my head to make the stories easier to understand and decided that if I was editing as I read, I could put those skills to use.

Are there genres you refuse, if so why is that? Do you have any you love?I prefer not to read erotica, it’s just not my cup of tea.  I love historical romance, young adult, and Christian based books the most.

Are you also a writer?  If so do you self-edit or do you use the services of another editor? I write poetry and lyrics but I have never submitted my work for publishing.

What are your opinions of self-edited work by authors? Self-editing is virtually impossible.  You need that person who can help you see the best wording to convey your thought.  The person not afraid to say this paragraph is not needed or this makes no sense, can we try this instead.  It is hard to find your own mistakes, and second guessing your own work can lead to further mistakes.

Have you ever refused a manuscript? No, I have just now started in the business.

Have you ever had an author refuse your suggestions/changes? If so how did you deal with it? No, and if they did that would be their choice.  As an editor I am here to correct mistakes and makes suggestions.  Ultimately this is their work and they must do what feels right for them.

Editors often receive a bad press in the writing community, what are your thoughts on this? First and foremost editors must remember that they are assisting a writer with producing an easy to read product.  They are NOT the writer of the particular story they are working on and their vision will not always be the same as the writer. Instead of being a constant negative voice, make sure to give your author good feedback when they have done well.  I think building a good relationship with your author is imperative, it helps you to further understand what your author is wanting to say and how you can help them say it.

Please could you tell us about the process involved with editing for, say, a 100k word manuscript. (Line edit, content edit etc.) Line editing is the final edit ensuring proper punctuation, correct wording, that the best quality of work has been produced.

Content editing is working with the author to change wording and dialogue while ensuring that the vision of the work is being kept. Content editing can be the difference in being an author and being a bestselling author.

What is the difference between proof-reading and editing? Proof-reading is fixing punctuation and spelling mistakes, taking out double use of words.  Editing is ensuring the flow of the story, making suggested changes, and working with your author to ensure their vision is being told.

Do you have part of the process you really enjoy? Is there a part you don’t? I love it all.

Outside of your work as an editor do you read for pleasure? What genre do you enjoy the most? I love to read and would read from the time I get up until I go to bed if it were possible.  My favourite would be historical romance but it’s becoming more difficult to find “original” story lines, so I read a lot of young adult.

If so do you find yourself editing the work as you go or are you able to “switch off?” No, I am definitely editing as I go.

What advice would you give to someone starting out as an editor?Research and marketing in that order.  Look at the average prices free-lance editors are charging and determine where in that range your skills and experience fit.  Decide which type of content you would be most happy reading, if you don’t love reading what you are working on then you will struggle to effectively edit that work.  Then find all the places you can advertise yourself.  Be willing to work for free in the beginning, building a name will help you be prosperous later on.

What advice would you give to someone who wants to self-edit? Self-editing leads to second and third guessing of what you wrote and in doing so often leads to further mistakes.  It is time consuming and that time could be spent working on your next novel. Find a good editor and let them assist you in seeing your vision in all its potential.

Tell us a silly fact about yourself. I have a stuffed frog that I can’t sleep without.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Editor Interview Number Eleven – N. R Champagne

Hi, welcome to the Library of Erana and thank you for talking to us today.

–Thank you so much for inviting me!

 

Please introduce yourself.

–I’m N. R. Champagne, Nina to my friends and clients.

 

How did you get into this line of work?

–Funnily enough, I was first drawn to it when I was going through the beta-reading stage with my first book. I was lucky enough to find some really good beta readers, one of whom was in the process of becoming an editor. I had done word processing and editing earlier in my life. I saw that there was a need for reasonably priced editing, and I decided to offer my own services to other indie authors.

 

Are there genres you refuse, if so why is that? Do you have any you love?

–I wouldn’t refuse any genre, and I do both fiction and nonfiction. My favorites are the ones I write in: fantasy and science fiction (including dystopia/postapocalyptic fiction). But I think I would refuse any manuscript that had themes of hatred, excessive violence, or violent sex.

 

Are you also a writer?  If so do you self-edit or do you use the services of another editor?

–Yes, I am a writer. In fact, that’s how I got into editing. My first book, Prodigal Angel, was critiqued, beta-read and proofread by multiple readers, but not outside edited. I won’t make the same mistake with my next book, though.

 

What are your opinions of self-edited work by authors?

–I can certainly understand authors wanting to self-edit; the fees for professional editing are quite daunting. It’s not unusual to pay a big editing house $2,000 or more for a 100K-word manuscript. Of course, I charge about a quarter of that; somewhere around $500 for a basic line edit. It’s not because my editing is not as good as theirs–I believe it might be better! It’s just that as a small service, I have no real overheads so I can charge much less. I’ve seen too many books self-published with bad grammar; it’s a real turn-off to readers. Authors need to remember that no matter how good they are, another pair of eyes is essential. After you’ve been over your own work so many times, you tend to miss a lot. Also, an editor can point out problems with your manuscript you were never even aware of.

 

Have you ever refused a manuscript?

–No, but I have gotten some for reviews in the past that I couldn’t go through with because they were so bad. But a manuscript going to an editor should be in better shape by that point; an editor expects the manuscript to have been critiqued, beta read, and revised by then, so that it’s ready for the editing stage.

 

Have you ever had an author refuse your suggestions/changes? If so how did you deal with it?

–I haven’t experienced that exactly, but I tend to work very closely with the author and I’m respectful of their wishes. My approach is, “The author is always right.” It’s their book, after all, not mine, and I am careful not to override their intentions. Often I will check with the author first if I want to change a certain way she does something, and the author can approve or reject any change I make. I have been asked why a certain change is called for, and I explain the reasoning for it. Usually, they accept it, but if they don’t want it, that’s their decision.

 

Editors often receive a bad press in the writing community, what are your thoughts on this?

–There seem to be two major complaints: First, editors can be rather autocratic, trying to override authors with what they think is correct and pushing their own ideas on them. I’m very careful not to do that; I try to discern the author’s unique voice and protect it. If that voice or style happens to include an ungrammatical way of doing something, so be it. Second, there are apparently some editors who are like building contractors: they’re slow, unreliable, and hard to get hold of! Again, I try to maintain a very close relationship with the author, working one-on-one with them to perfect their creation. I also believe in being professional and having integrity in business. That means keeping to schedule and being available.

 

Please could you tell us about the process involved with editing for, say, a 100k word Manuscript. (Line edit, content edit etc.)

–The process starts the same way whether it’s a basic line edit or a deeper content edit. Using Word’s Track Changes, I’ll go through the manuscript thoroughly to catch any errors in grammar, spelling, punctuation, etc. If it’s a deeper edit, I’ll make or suggest changes to improve the clarity and flow of the prose. This means different word choices and/or arrangements. If I’m doing a developmental, I will take notes as I go along so I can make constructive suggestions regarding the plot, characters, voice, etc. After I’ve gone through the whole thing, I’ll do another pass to check for anything I may have missed. Once it’s done, the author will be able to keep or reject any changes I’ve incorporated, and they can rewrite parts (or not) based on the content suggestions I’ve made. Lastly, I’ll do the developmental write-up, if that was desired.

 

What is the difference between proof-reading and editing?

–I’m really glad you asked me that, because I’ve noticed that the word “proofreading” is being misused by many freelance editors. They’re using it to mean a basic line edit. That’s not correct. Editing is done first to correct errors and improve a manuscript; proofreading is done in the very last stage before printing, on an already edited manuscript, to catch anything that might have been missed up until then. It’s a final once-over.

 

Do you have part of the process you really enjoy? Is there a part you don’t?

–I actually enjoy everything about it. It’s fun and interesting to get to read all these different, creative stories, to get to know the authors, and there’s a lot of satisfaction in helping to make their books better!

 

Outside of your work as an editor do you read for pleasure? What genre do you enjoy the most?

–I do read a lot, and I most enjoy reading in the genres in which I write: fantasy, science fiction, dystopian and paranormal. I have a blog post I think you’ll find interesting, about why we need fantasy and science fiction. You can read it here: http://nrchampagne.blogspot.co.uk/2014/09/why-do-we-need-fantasy-and-science.html

 

If so do you find yourself editing the work as you go or are you able to “switch off?”

–Unfortunately, I am finding more and more that I can’t “switch off” when I’m reading. I just started the second in Anne Rice’s werewolf series: The Wolves of Midwinter. I’d never before noticed her quirky, ungrammatical approach to punctuation, but now it’s driving me crazy!

 

What advice would you give to someone starting out as an editor?

–I think it’s essential to get some kind of training–there are plenty of courses out there–and to familiarize yourself with the Chicago Manual of Style. Like many occupations, it’s possible to be good at it just by learning; unfortunately, however, you can’t be really excellent without an inherent talent. It might be a good idea to have that natural bent for it.

 

What advice would you give to someone who wants to self-edit?

–Don’t do it–call me! *laughs*

 

Tell us a silly fact about yourself.

–I’ve developed the rather disturbing habit of talking to myself out loud when I’m shopping. It helps me stay focused and not forget anything! I do get strange looks occasionally…

 

Please add any links to your blog/website etc.

Editor website: www.champagne-editing.com

Author website: www.nrchampagnebooks.com

Blog: http://nrchampagne.blogspot.com

Facebook: N.R. Champagne

Twitter: @NRChampagne1

Amazon Prodigal Angel page: http://amzn.to/1koeXXu

 

 

 

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Portals Release Day Blitz – Fantasy Anthology

This one isn’t mine but always happy to support other authors. This is a new anthology release in the fantasy genre. Please look out for the blog tour stop later in the month.

Happy Book Birthday to Portals!


Portals
Genre: Fantasy Anthology (mixed sub genres)

 

Release Date: June 5, 2014

 

Keywords: Fantasy, Epic Fantasy, Sword and Sorcery, Urban Fantasy, Steampunk, Short Stories, Picture Prompt

 


 

Description: No matter what world you call home, or what your station in life, there are just some paths that weren’t meant to be tread.

 

Ordinary World by Laurie Treacy

Imagine a new neighbor moves next door, a creepy guy who gives fifteen year-old Amy Silva the willies? Amy wonders what the stone archway in the backyard is for. Her life becomes even more stressful when her family reveals they’re witches. 
Could Amy’s new neighbor have anything to do with a local girl’s disappearance or be a threat to her magical loved ones?
Maronda’s Quest by Christy Thomas
The Grand Wizard has decreed Maronda enter the Portal of Life to embark upon a quest of great importance, but despite her Ma’s claims it is a blessing, premonitions of danger persist.
Lenox works to prove his worth to wed her, his true love, but it appears a wizard plots to remove him from Maronda’s life forever. To secure their future together, Lenox decides to accompany her on the quest, even if forbidden. He must ultimately choose between using his dragon fighting skills which could lead to his death, or give Maronda her greatest desire.
In the end, it’s Maronda who must learn to live with the consequences of his decision
Mexmur, the Huntress by Anna Simpson
Long ago a dragonkeeper betrayed his charges. To bring back magic, to set things right, Mexmur is sent through the portal.
Can she succeed armed with only a poem, talon and blade.
Entrance of Lost Souls by Echo Shea 
A guardian to the entrances between worlds, Gladys has been called to bring a little girl back from Fairyland. Passing through the Entrance of Lost Souls is no fun, neither is hunting down a deranged banshee, but what is a guardian to do?
And, is the banshee really kidnapping the girl…or saving her from something else?
Where Once were Hearts by Havva Murat
After losing both his parents, his entire fortune and his childhood sweetheart, Master Bartholomew Battlesby sets out into the wilds of Northern England to make the acquaintance of his only surviving relation, the landed recluse, Mr. Horatio Grimsby who has an eerie penchant for both tinkering and clockwork. But, on finding his relation dead, with a gaping hole in his chest, and the beautiful, but scornful, Miss Evangeline Witherop ruling in his place, Bartholomew learns there is more than one way to lose your heart.
Can Bartholomew reignite the spirit of love and mercy within Miss Witherop, or will he suffer the same fate as his poor, heartless cousin?
The Lunatic Queen by Michael Siciliano
The land of Mershinka has been thrown into perpetual night. Their King is dead and a moon witch, known as The Night Queen, rules from the royal palace in Grosnov. An endless fog shrouds the land, killing crops and starving the populace. Cold-eyed enforcers put down rebellions while volksa, twisted wolf-creatures, roam the mists looking for prey. Many have given up hope and wait for the inevitable end. All seems lost.
Two teenagers, Pavel and Tamara, devise a plan to kill Vazya the Night Queen when the moons Kainsk and Seresnya are down, end the stifling enchantment, and bring the sun back to their dying land. But, they need a watch to tell time, a compass to guide them through the mists, weapons to fight off Vazya’s minions, and all the courage they can muster.

Purchase Links:

PRINT

Amazon
Amazon (UK)
Barnes and Noble (Coming Soon)
Kobo (Coming Soon)
Smashwords



Tour Schedule
Book Blitz and Tour-wide Giveaway
Paperback copy of Portals and a $10 Amazon gift card.
Ends 7/03/2014


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code.  No purchase necessary, but you must be 18 or older to enter. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter, and announced on the widget. Winner well be notified by emailed and have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. The number of entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Roane Publishing’s marketing department.