Hey everyone, I know I haven’t been posting here as much lately. I tend to post more to Instagram and cross-post to my Facebook author page and my Twitter account. But there is big news afoot…
Tilt, book two in The Flying Ponies trilogy, is releasing on Saturday, March 2, 2019. I am having a book launch party at the Shelby Area District Library (where I work) on March 2, from 4-6 pm. Both Tilt and Lift, book one in the trilogy, will be available to buy. I will also sign the books.
Here is the back cover copy for Tilt:
Charlotte Flynn is on a mission.
Betrayed by both Penumbra and her Uncle Baron, Charlotte is seeking the missing Flying Ponies in the hopes of uniting them against their wayward leader. Joined by Dreadful, a crazy cavalry horse; Black, her new boyfriend; and her family and friends, she plans to find the missing carousel horses before Penumbra and Baron do.
But the hunt won’t be easy. An old friend of Black’s shows up, with intentions that might not be as honorable as she says. The Tyranny holds some of the Flying Ponies in their possession – and they’re not giving them up. Penumbra, determined to have all the carousel horses to himself, will stop at nothing to defeat Charlotte and Dreadful.
And if that isn’t enough, Charlotte discovers she, like her traitorous uncle, has magic flowing through her. Determined to bring the Flying Ponies back together no matter the cost, the sixteen-year-old may end up paying the ultimate price.
I look forward to seeing everyone! If you have any questions about the books, characters, the Flying Ponies, or writing in general, please feel free to ask them. I love talking about writing!
I just finished the second edits, the color edits, on Tilt. Next up is taking all the changes and incorporating them into the manuscript. I’m hoping to get Tilt to my editor by the middle of December.
This book has been a lot easier to work with than Lift. The story knows where it’s headed, and believe me, BIG things go down in book two! Almost all of the Flying Ponies get introduced, and you get to know Dreadful more.
I hope to release Tilt in mid-winter (Valentine’s Day would be fun, wouldn’t it?). Check back on my social media as I will be updating where I am with the publishing process.
Brought to you from Laura A. Grace from Unicorn Quester, who graciously made this for me while also reviewing Lift and interviewing me.
It’s finally here: Lift officially releases! This day has been a long time coming; I’ve wanted to be an author for a long time now.
If you’re in the vicinity of Montague, Michigan this afternoon, I will be at the Book Nook & Java Shop from 4:30-6 pm, talking a little about Coney Island carousels and the inspiration behind Lift. I will also be selling and signing copies of the novel, which is the first in the Flying Ponies trilogy.
This picture was taken at the Grand Rapids Museum this past March. The horse is an armored charger from their 1928 Spillman carousel. They are one of my favorite types of carousel horses. This particular one will serve as inspiration for one of the Flying Ponies in the second book in the trilogy, Tilt.
Have a blessed day and hope to see you this afternoon!
We are now T minus four days from launching Lift, first in the Flying Ponies trilogy. It is a great feeling to be here, this close, but I have to admit to you – a little frightening, too.
As an indie (independent) author, my book isn’t debuting with all the fanfare a Big 5 book would get. There are no ads in glossy magazines, no write-ups in the New York Times, and no appearances on Good Morning America. It is, however, getting a launch party at the very cool book store, the Book Nook & Java Shop, on Saturday. It has three very nice reviews on Goodreads, and it has a KILLER cover. I mean, have you seen it?? So what is so frightening?
The fact that it might not sell well.
You see, indie authors, unlike Big 5 ones, pay for different book services. I have an outstanding editor and publisher, but I also pay them for their help. Now, when my book sells, I don’t owe them anything, whereas a Big 5 author owes money out of their sales to both their publisher and their agent. It is a big decision whether to go indie or Big 5; I have been nothing but happy and content with my decision to be an indie.
However, this also means that Lift needs to make back enough to publish the next book in the series. And so on and so forth. To be completely honest, I’m not really that worried, though. Or at least, I try not to be. I have felt blessed by God from day one of this journey, from the first inklings of the story up to right now as I write this. Still, it’s good to remember that I want writing stories to be a business.
So, overall, I’m super excited about Saturday. I’m excited to share Lift with others. I’m excited that God has blessed me with some writing talent.
And I hope to make some money. Oh and by the way, the gorgeous carousel horse below? He is a Charles Looff original, circa 1900. He was once part of Marianne Stevens’ carousel collection, and is now for sale since she passed away. You could own him, if you have $49,500 lying around.
He is also the model for Penumbra, the lead horse of the Flying Ponies Grand Carousel, featured in Lift. The photo is not mine, unfortunately. It is borrowed from a carousel website.
Hope to see you on Saturday!
Daybreaker is the final book in the Undertow series. The author, K. R. Conway, is also my publisher. We met on Goodreads, after I fangirled over Undertow, the first book in the series. Daybreaker releases tomorrow!
This is the press release for Daybreaker and the Undertow series:
Daybreaker, the final book in K.R. Conway’s Urban Fantasy series known as Undertow, is finally out! If you have yet to read about Eila Walker (you know, the hilarious teen girl who inherits a house with a murderous past along with a snarky crew of supernatural rejects and a killer boy who’s determined to keep her alive), have no fear: the link to the first book is here: https://books2read.com/u/m2okW7
The link to all Conway’s books are here: https://www.amazon.com/K.R.-Conway/e/B00FUZUXRU/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1520549081&sr=8-1
K.R. Conway is a sarcastic bugger who likes to torment Cape Cod’s summertime tourists, taunting them about sneaky sharks and traffic-free backroads. She’s been a professional journalist since 1999 when several newspaper editors lost their minds and hired her as a feature writer. She is best known, however, for her Urban Fantasy series, Undertow, which reads like a mash-up of Jaws and The Goonies.
Awards, nominations, and features include Barnes and Noble’s Seven Terrifying Summer Reads for Teens (2015), Teen Ink Magazine’s Best Picks, Girl’s Life Magazine Cool Winter Reads, newspapers, magazines, and radio. Nominations include Indie Recon Live (Best New YA, Best Opening Line, Best Book Boyfriend), YALSA, Cybil, Goodreads, IRDA, and others.
The series has spawned fan fiction, fan art, jewelry, clothing, and even tattoos. Conway, who is a member of SCBWI, teaches fiction craft at writer conferences, high schools, and libraries. She lives on Cape Cod with her equally weird family and a strange assortment of critters. When not writing, Conway drives a forty-foot Loser Cruiser that smells like forgotten Pony sneakers from the 80s.
So as most of you know, Lift is now available as a Kindle pre-order, and the soft cover ARCs are in my hands. Three have been sent out to others. One will go to someone who will review it for our local paper, and one is staying right here with me. So what comes next?
The release party is being held April 21, from 4-6:30 pm, at the Book Nook & Java Shop, in Montague, Michigan. The book will be available from Amazon on that day as both an e-book and a trade paperback. I am also going to have the book available from other distributors; most notably from Ingram, from whom most libraries order their books.
The second book in The Flying Ponies trilogy, Tilt, is complete. I won’t look at it for 6-8 weeks or longer. When I do begin going through it, I will be looking at how it flows and what changes need to come about. When it’s as far as I can take it, it will be sent to my editor, Kat Szmit, and together we’ll mold it until it’s ready.
In the meantime, give or take a month or two, I will begin writing Spin, the final book in the trilogy. Once The Flying Ponies is finished, I’ll begin work on the next story, which I’ve already started notes for.
The writing life is busy, but I wouldn’t want it any other way.
As most of us know, world building is an important part of creating our stories. Without a world of their own, where do our characters act out their journeys? For those of us who write fantasy and science fiction, this is particularly important, but it’s also important to writers who work in historical or realistic fiction.
So how do you, as the world builder, go about doing it? I write fantasy fiction. My first novel is called Lift, and it’s about a carousel of magical horses. It’s set in the here and now, in Michigan. But there is still plenty to do in regards to setting scenes. Michigan’s weather is tempestuous, and I use that throughout my novel. There is a magical house, that may or may not be pleasant to live in. Each piece of your world needs to work together to create the overall sense of belonging.
The world for Lift has been easier to create than that of Pentallia, the world my fantasy series is set in. But in some ways, Pentallia has been more fun, because it’s not part of our world. I am an avid Pinterest user; each story has its own board. Because Pentallia needed to be built from scratch, I currently have four boards devoted to it, and I’m not sure that’s even enough. Its helpful to have pictures that represent my characters, wardrobes, and places. I also maintain a board solely for quotes that remind me of my characters.
Is all that necessary? For me, yes. You might find using Pinterest tedious, or worse, a nasty time suck of your limited writing time. Every writer has to learn what works for them, and do it. Our main goal is to create new worlds, portals, for our readers to get lost in.
Find what works, and exploit it. Your readers, your fans, will thank you.