Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Please Welcome Author Kelly Martin

It is my pleasure to introduce Kelly Martin, a fellow Astraea Press author. Kelly puts the rest of us to shame with her energy and prolific output, even while working as a preschool teacher and tending to her young family.  In addition to her writing, she blogs regularly at Inkspiration as well as her daily devotional blog, Encourage 365, which is following the daily Bible readings outlined by Bible Gateway.
Today, Kelly is embarking on a very ambitious blog tour for her new Astraea Press release, Saint Sloan. I was more than happy to host a stop here at Creative Hodgepodge.

I want to thank Patricia for having me on her blog today! I’m very excited because I’m on a 12-stop one day blog tour! It’s been so fun getting all the posts ready! I hope you come to the ‘mother blog’ to click the links to the other 11 blogs and see what I have to say about the book, writing ‘clean’ fiction, ‘difficult’ topics, and learn all about Sloan, Aaron, Ray, Boyd, Travis, Mackenzie and all the rest! I can’t wait to see you there.

Here is an Excerpt from SAINT SLOAN.  I hope you enjoy!
“Then why did you tell me to stay away from him?”
“That’s a good question.” Aaron’s voice boomed from the kitchen entryway. Sloan jumped when she heard it. Ray said he slept until ten and it was barely eight. Friday night she had been so appreciative of him. Now, thanks to the testimonies of others, she was nervous to see him.
He looked tired with messy hair, wrinkled navy blue work pants, and a day old beard. Despite herself, she couldn’t take her eyes off of him, specifically his lack of a shirt. Aaron had his arms crossed over his well-built chest and leaned on the door facing. “Why did you tell Miss Sloan to stay away from me, brother?”
Sloan tore her eyes away from Aaron’s biceps in time to see Ray lean back in his chair and cross his arms as well, almost as if accepting a challenge. “Because, brother, for all of your good qualities, you can still be a jerk sometimes.”
“Runs in the family.” Aaron smirked as he walked into the room and grabbed a paper plate. He piled the last remaining pieces of pizza on it and got a coke from the fridge. He turned a seat around and sat at the head of the table next to Sloan, putting her smack dab in the middle of them. “What ya working on?”
Sloan forced her eyes to stay on his and not venture down his very long, very muscular, very nibble-able…“Biology," she said quickly. “We’re studying Biology.” Don’t look at his neck… don’t look at his neck.
Can’t wait to read more? Buy the book from any of the links below:

Astraea Press, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Smashwords, Kobo, and other ebook outlets.


Thank you so much for having me here today!

Author bio:
~Kelly Martin is a best selling author of young adult fiction. She has two books: Grace Award nominee CROSSING THE DEEP and Amazon Best selling in Teen/Religion SAINT SLOAN. She has several short stories published and loves to write ‘twitter fiction’ when she’s bored. Kelly loves God, is addicted to chocolate, and would rather write than sleep.

You can find her on twitter (she tweets a lot): @martieKay

You can find her author page (blog tour central): at

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Blogging Blues

I was about to bemoan the fact that I haven't written here, and that I'm really slacking as a blogger. But then it occurred to me that I HAVE been blogging—just not here! So I thought I'd post some links to the places I've been, in case you'd care to join me:
Last Friday, I was a guest at The Book Boost. I talked about my favorite Irishman—who happened to be Japanese. Come and read about one of the finest men who ever lived. His friends called him Bob. I called him Dad. Here's the LINK.
My writing partner Stephanie Michels and I were featured on the blogs of Margery Scott, Meg Mims,  SG Rogers, and Joselyn Vaughn, talking about writing as a team, and talking about our book The Calico Heart.
I've been featured on Susanna Ellis' blog, talking about my Japanese heritage.
So I guess I've been writing. I'm still visiting other blogs, but it's time I settled down here. I've got a couple of writing projects going - another story for the Stitching Post series, and the sequel to The Samurai's Garden. I need to get in gear with those projects so that I can submit something soon. Hopefully I'll have some excerpts to share at the Sweet Saturday Samples hops.
Now, if I can just get my muses to wake up, I'll be all set.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Please Welcome Author Nell Dixon

Today I am so pleased to once again welcome fellow Astraea Press author Nell Dixon. Nell is a very prolific author, having books available from ten publishers – so far! She is from the Black Country in England (I admit, I had to hunt down a map to find out it's the part of England closest to Wales) and in addition to writing, she has a passion for cathedral architecture. She also likes walking, gardening, art, and travelling with her family. She was recently here to share her Valentine novella, Lights, Camera, Poltergeist! and now she has yet another book to share with us.

Thank you for inviting me to talk about Radio Gaga, my new chick lit suspense story. I’m excited about this book as it’s my first mainstream full length title for over eighteen months. Set in the world of local radio it has a fun and upbeat heroine and a dark, mysterious hero. Ben, the hero, is a former soldier wounded in Afghanistan he wants a quiet life and time to recover. Chloe is impulsive, accident prone and longs to be famous. Hardly the perfect match!

Here's the blurb for Radio Gaga:
Over the airwaves everyone can hear you scream!
Radio researcher and part-time presenter Chloe Lark is certain her big show biz break is just around the corner. Live it Up radio may not be the big time, but surely - one day soon - fame will come her way. And, if she could convince the hunky guy next door to give her a chance, her love life might improve too.
Ex-soldier Ben isn’t sure if his new ‘Z’ list celebrity neighbour is crazy or on medication. Either way he’s looking for a quiet life out of the spotlight. The last thing he needs is an accident prone media hungry blonde complete with mystery stalker. Problem is - Chloe doesn’t seem to have received that particular memo…

Here’s an excerpt!
I knew it wasn’t burglars when I noticed the large empty space next to the bay window. No self-respecting burglar would break into someone’s home just to steal a life size cardboard cut-out of Darth Vader would they?
No, it wasn’t burglars who’d nicked Darth or who’d cleared the shelf of the Queen CDs. It was Neil. He’d finally moved out, and taken Freddie Mercury and the Dark Lord with him as he went.
For a moment I stood trying to decide how I felt. Angry? Broken-hearted? In the time it took me to cross the room, enter the kitchen and dump my handbag on the worktop I decided my overwhelming feeling was relief.
Neil had raided the kitchen too: his state of the art coffee maker which I hadn’t been allowed to touch was gone, along with his juicer and his super fancy wok. Only a couple of spilled coffee beans on the countertop showed where they had been. I looked at the clippie magnet on the fridge to see if he’d left me a note. We’d always left messages for each other one there. A few months back they had been little love notes with kisses and pictures of hearts. Now the only thing on there was the ratty message I’d left for him yesterday asking him to pick up some milk on his way home.
I walked back through the lounge to what had once been our bedroom. The wardrobe doors were open showing the empty hangers and his rack of immaculately arranged ties had gone. My mobile vibrated in my trouser pocket telling me I had a text as I sank down onto the edge of the bed. I knew what it would be before I even fished it out of my pocket.
‘Chloe, guess you know by now have moved out, thought would be better this way. U know it wasn’t working, sorry, N’
© Nell Dixon 2013

Radio Gaga is available at Amazon, AmazonUK

Nell can be found on Facebook, at her Blog, her Website, and on Twitter (@NellDixon)

Friday, March 1, 2013

Time for a Break!

It's been a long, long time since I've blogged here. I've posted blogs and promotional stuff for other authors, but it seems I haven't participated in Sweet Saturday Samples to share works-in-progress (or any other work) and I haven't shared pictures of any projects. I'm not sure why. I could use the "Life Gets In The Way" excuse, but life also happened when I was posting regularly. I have been writing – I signed up for Winter Nano with my writers group and I'm twenty-three thousand words into another Stitching Post novel.
Maybe it's time management. Maybe it's burn-out. Maybe it's boredom. It could be that nothing blog-worthy has happened in my life. I kind of doubt it, seeing I've got all kinds of pictures to put in my scrapbook. It could be a combination of all the above. But in any event, I haven't shared any of my life events or thoughts.
So I'm going to do what any self-respecting writer does. I'm going to change things up. I'm getting a change of scenery for a while. Getting some new experiences. It's spring break at the college where I teach, and I am going to fly across the country. My cousin lives there, and I haven't seen her in a long time. And I've never seen the west coast. So this afternoon my daughter and I are taking off.
Will this result in a new story? Possibly. That would be very nice. A trip to Greece resulted in Aegean Intrigue. Going to England made me a little more more assured about writing Partridge. While I was in Japan I did some research for Samurai's Garden. And my trip to Paris inspired a sequel for Aegean Intrigue. New ideas are always nice, especially if a great plot accompanies them. So California, here I come!