Sunday Smatterings

Sunday Smatterings 5.20.18

Hi there, chickens, welcome to Sunday Smatterings. Lots of bookish items this week, so buckle up, buttercups, let's get reading.

Here's what happened on the Internets this week:

The 2018 Summer Reading Guide is here! Some superb titles brought to you by Modern Mrs. Darcy!

Sweetbitter Author Stephanie Danler on Bringing Her Book to TV. "When you’re a novelist, you’re really playing God and you’re in total control of the action and the characters. I quickly realized that with screenwriting all you’re doing, really, is creating a document that’s a map for the director and the actors to hopefully find something sort of magical in the moment. It’s not a finished piece of work. It’s not the final say. It’s so fluid." Fascinating.

The Silenced Woman and the Psychological Thriller - How to Write A Feminist Thriller From a Male Perspective. Superb, thought-provoking piece by Araminta Hall. I’ve long said we need to rethink victimizing our heroines. This dovetails nicely.

Dangers of Not Trusting The Creative Voice. Great advice — though I still think it’s perfectly fine to edit your novel once it’s done.

17 Secrets of Audiobook Narrators. Pertinent to think about, now that we at Two Tales have published our first audiobook...

Today's New Moon In Taurus Is The Perfect Excuse To Treat Yourself. Change is afoot, peeps. Take advantage!

Time Mangement Monday: 3 Reasons You're Procrastinating. Any of these apply to you, chickens?

Pick up a cat like a pro. Practical advice. 🐈

And closer to home:

In case you were under a rock this week, I revealed the cover of my new standalone novel, TEAR ME APART! Confession: This book is unlike any other I have ever written. It’s a very serious family drama, a dark suspense with a Girl, Interrupted vibe, albeit if the girls from the film were grown up. It's about a mother's love, and secrets, and darkness. The tagline, Everyone Has A Dark Side, could not be more perfect. I got chills when I saw it on the cover.

Here's where you can order yours:

Barnes & Noble

That's it from me. Y'all have a wonderful week, snag some strawberries at the farmer's market, sit on a porch for a spell, and we'll talk again soon.


Sunday Smatterings

Sunday Smatterings 5.13.18

Hello, friends, welcome to Sunday...and Happy Mother's Day! As a mother of cats myself, I look forward to a day of being waited on by my fur girls. (Ah... Well, a woman can dream...) 

Settle down and pick up your cuppa. We've got some links to read.

Here's what happened on the Internets this week:

I want to be rich, and I'm not sorry. Fabulous piece — I’m right there with you, Jessica Knoll. No apologies needed for being a woman who works hard to achieve financial independence and freedom.

The birth of a book reviewer, by Debbie Haupt. A very cool essay about how a wonderful reviewer got in the game.

Which books made you a reader? These three authors have some surprising answers. I loved this! Including Lisa Ko, who was a guest on A WORD ON WORDS. 

Researchers train spider to jump on command. Can you imagine? Equal parts mystifying and terrifying...

Read the 100 List for PBS' Great American Read. Are your favorites on the list? Mine are!

A heartwarming moment with wild gorillas. Amazing. Can you imagine doing this? The baseball cap escapade made me tear up.

Every library has a story to tell. These three books about library history look super interesting. Could there be a nerdier subject? No. Do I care? Absolutely not.

And closer to home:

We made an audiobook! If you've been under a rock, you'll be thrilled to hear that the 13 stories from DEAD ENDS have been brought to life in audiobook. They're a killer way to pass the time as you drive, do the dishes, or run in the park (especially running—these stories are creepy as hell...). Our narrator, Courtney Parker, did a PHENOMENAL job, and I think you'll love it!

Click on your favorite retailer to get your copy:

Amazon  |  Audible  |  iTunes  |

And my story from this collection, Catwood, is available for sale as a single ebook! Just FYI for you...

That's it from me! Hope y'all have a great week. And tune into the newsletter Wednesday—I have some big news for you... Wait, you're not on the newsletter? Well, click here and we'll take care of that for you.


Sabbatical is over, so... I’m back!

Honey, I'm home...

Hello, good people! My social media Lenten fast was lovely and calm, but now I’m back — rested, recharged, and full of words. I hope you’ve had a lovely six weeks without me! Many props to The Kerr, who handled the socials so wonderfully! I know y’all had fun with her — thanks for all your sweet notes to us both.

Oh, SO MANY THINGS to talk about!

Blog Resurrection

I missed the bulk of the #quitfacebook kerfuffle, but I know many of you aren’t entranced with how FB is handling your info. Neither am I.

Because I would hate to lose touch with you if you are leaving, I’ve decided to resurrect my blog. 

Aside from the privacy issues, FB frustrates me to pieces because while so many of you have joined my author page, you rarely see the posts unless I pay to boost them, so I think it's time to invite you to join me in my blog and we’ll go from there. 

I have to admit, I’m rather excited to be jumping back into non-fiction. I miss blogging, but it won't exactly be regimented. Whatever is on my mind, I’m going to share. I’ve been very inspired by Nora Roberts’ blog lately. It’s fun, and relaxed, and that’s my goal. Don’t be surprised to see some rebranding happening next week, too. 

And do me a small favor? Leave a comment to let me know you’re around and reading. Writing into the void isn’t fun! 

New Books

THE SIXTH DAY is about to release (April 10).

Romantic Times gave it an extremely rare 5 Star Gold rating. It’s as crazy a thriller ride as you will take this year, guaranteed to please fans of the series, and hopefully entrance new ones as well.

During my sabbital, Catherine and I hooked up out in California and put together the 6th Brit in the FBI novel, which I am working on right now. We even have a title, though I don’t think she’s released that info yet (#socialmediasabbatical). It’s been a research-intensive month, with so many things to learn. The writing is underway, though! I had a great writing retreat in March, and am now regularly laying down words again. 

TEAR ME APART went through two edits whilst I was away.

It’s going to be in galley soon, and we’re finalizing the cover. I just received the AAs — author alterations, aka last pass pages. This is my last chance to make any changes to the book before it goes into production. We do have back cover copy to share, so look for that on the blog shortly. Suffice it to say... Girl, Interrupted grows up. 

Other Projects

Amy and I have been making books!

We have a spiffy new German version of NO ONE KNOWS for sale, and we’re busy putting together some print versions of my most recent short stories.

And (drumroll... 🥁) We're about to release our first Two Tales audiobook: an incredible vocal performance of the DEAD ENDS anthology! And there’s more in the works, including another anthology that is going to blow your mind. 

A WORD ON WORDS has seen many new entries these past few weeks, so you need to check them out ASAP! One of the things that I think is very cool about AWOW is the fact that my co-host (Mary Laura Philpott) and I are both writers. It makes these interviews very much peer-to-peer, adding insight to both how we work and how the authors we’re interviewing approach their craft, books, and life in general. 

I have some more news that I can’t share yet and it’s about killing me to stay quiet, but that’s how the cookie crumbles. Trust me, you will be the first to know when I can tell you.

That’s enough for now! 

Since you haven’t seen them here in a while, here are a few shots of Jameson and Jordan, aka The Minions, on our latest adventure. They are very happy to be home and back on their porch.


Daily Tao ☯ 5.26.17

Daily Tao 5.26.17

So guess who forgot to blog last night?

I remembered at 10:30, whilst watching the Penguins v. Senators game, and decided you know what? It’s okay. I figured y’all wouldn’t mind. 

But I should have done it early, before we went to dinner for my MIL birthday, so shame on me. I didn’t get as much work done yesterday as I wanted either, for various reasons, mostly to be blamed on fellow scribe Sarah J. Maas, whose utterly brilliant and captivating A COURT OF WINGS AND RUIN has me between the Scylla and Charybdis of work and reading. 

I haven’t enjoyed a book so much in months. All I want to do is gobble it up. So when my normal reading during breakfast and lunch accidentally stretch into my writing time, and I’m up well past midnight reading, I have to simply bow in Sarah’s direction, and recognize that refilling my well is sometimes as important as expending its contents. 

In addition to writing, learning that it’s called a “cast” of falcons (dangling editorial carrot, there) I did do something else awesome yesterday — picked the audio narrators for LIE TO ME. My God, the talent on this book — you’re going to love it!

And today I took a lunch break and did a long, fun, intricate, and exciting interview with Hank Garner from THE AUTHOR STORIES podcast. We covered everything from my humble beginnings writing weird short stories of astronauts left behind on Mars (yes, I went there first) to a very extemporaneous discussion of creativity and inspiration to my favorite topic, the need for strong female leads in fiction. He made me so comfortable that I was actually doing voices. Which is a thing. My friends can tell you I slip into characters all the time, but I sometimes do it unknowingly, and only when I’m utterly relaxed. So… impressions by J.T., coming next Friday on Hank’s awesome podcast. I’ll put up links.

And then, the afternoon calmed, and I managed 1500 words. That's better.

Have a wonderful long weekend! Be safe, be smart, and have fun.