Finding the Spark for Guest Blogger- Author Jessica Ozment

Hello Friends and Fans!

I wanted to introduce everyone to my partner in crime, my artist with the mostest, my talented co-author and creative master, Jessica Ozment. She’s agreed to jump on the crazy train with me some more and create a podcast. We recorded our first show this week. Right afterward, yes cause I know you’ll love what she brought to the show so much, I wanted to have her put her portion of the show into words for the blog. Below she touches on why she wanted to create a podcast and shares her own experiences that led her to write in the fantasy genre.

You can also listen to the full podcast below. Be gentle, it’s our first time.

Lit Musings’ Podcast Episode 1


 

Welcome Author Jessica Ozment

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Most who know me know that I’m guilty of writing and devouring fantasy novels like there’s no tomorrow and that I’m a graphic designer who enjoys building my business, The Magic Quill Graphics…but there’s actually another side to the indie book world I haven’t tapped into yet, which is odd for me because I’ve dipped my feet into just about everything to do with books. I’ve made it my mission to try my hand at anything I can to make connections with readers who might enjoy the things I not only have to say about the books I read and review, but also the projects I put my blood, sweat, and tears into creating from the ground up.

Expanding our reach

For me, establishing Lit Musings, alongside my incredibly talented co-host, Parker Sinclair, was about allowing me to keep up with my amazing readers in a different way, about gaining those crucial new connections in our community that are geared toward the fantasy genre, and to push the work I’ve stolen countless hours from my family time to create. I like the idea of us not only speaking about books here at Lit Musings, but also many other topics that pop up in the indie world we see from day to day.

Growing community

I’m sure I’m not the only one who believes the indie community is oversaturated with politics, vague booking, and childish conflicts… for this very reason, it is my goal to steer our listeners into more positive issues that actually have something to do with our profession. I’m looking forward to meeting new fantasy and paranormal authors and having them on the show to speak about what drove them into the Indie pool, and how they’ve grown since then. You’ll also find that I will be doing my best to collect trade tips to help you guys on the road to publishing so that we can grow as a team in this community, rather than every man for himself.

A mother’s lasting gift

The last reason I really want to go this direction with pushing myself to be more transparent in the community is because I lost my mother at a very early age, 14. She always nudged me to put my best foot forward and to develop the creative side of my brain that was always trying to take over anyway. She taught me to read, to write and to love myself.  She introduced me to my favorite writer, Stephen King…and through that small action, I was able to connect with her even now, with her being long gone. This show, for me, is dedicated to her memory because without it, I wouldn’t be here today.

Igniting a love for fantasy

Mermaid

THE LITTLE MERMAID

I chose to talk about The Little Mermaid in our first podcast. The biggest reason for this is, I’m a water lover. Anything that has to do with underwater worlds and magic really just draws me in, no matter what it’s about. I think I have probably over 50 fish in my house right now that can attest to this fact! I find it interesting that we still have yet to explore most of the oceans, and that we may find so much more if we just put our minds to it and show a little initiative.  I love the story behind the little mermaid because it teaches us to love who we are, to not change who we are because we love, and that there are so many people out there that will take what you love away from you to gain the upper hand. It’s such a strong coming of age movie that I think every girl should watch, young and old.

1.) Did you know that the original story about Ariel actually took off the coast of Denmark, where it is said Arendelle (from the movie Frozen, is set to be closely located.)

2,) Unlike most people I’m sure, I haven’t seen the second movie… which apparently explains that Captain Hook is the one who killed Ariel’s mother…

3.) When designing Ariel, artists used Alyssa Milano’s body as inspiration!

4.) Animating a film is a lot of work, and Disney didn’t have the manpower available. Disney hired the Chinese animation studio Pacific Rim to draw over one million bubbles by hand. Wow!

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HARRY POTTER

Another amazingly written series I easily fell in love with is the wonderful wizarding world of Harry Potter. Yes, I’m a nerd, haha! There are so many factors that pushed me to read the books and watch all of the movies, like the fact that a 10-year-old boy who had no idea he was magical suddenly has an entire world at his fingertips. A world which opened its doors to a misguided boy as if he never left. His struggles to gain acceptance from his peers and learn the truth of his past hit home with me, and from there, my love of fantasy first bloomed.

Fun facts:

1.) J.K Rowling came up with the names of the Hogwarts Houses on the back of a barf bag, yikes!

2.) Dementors actually represented Rowling’s struggle with depression.

3.) Apparently, Stephen King thought Dolores Umbridge was the perfect villain.

4.) And Rowling wrote the final chapter early on while writing the books.

Thanks for letting me jump in and guest blog today. Be sure to check out my latest publication featured in, Where There’s Murder, There’s Mystery: A Suspense Thriller Anthology. Now available for pre-order at the low price of .99 cents! Click here to pre-order today!

Jessica

Listen to our first Lit Musings podcast right here!

Lit Musings’ Podcast: Episode 1 Finding the Spark (October 2018)

Author Jessica Ozment and I are happy to release the first episode for our Lit Musings’ podcast. We hope you enjoy it, and be gentle, it’s our first time. HA!

Check it out below!

Your fantasy junkies,

Parker & Jessica

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You can also subscibe to Lit Musings on Spotify, iTunes, YouTube, and Google Podcasts!

The spark in my fantasy life.

 

It’s true; I am a fantasy and sci-fi junkie. I am not sure if I came out of the womb that way or if my parents influence me to be as such, but it’s true. Yes, I am a grown woman, and I wear Harry Potter and Avengers t-shirts (I’ll get to you some other time Thanos, you snap-happy narcissist), and not just to Disney or Universal Studios, I am talking bus stops, shopping, and if you’re lucky, even at happy hour to my hubby’s dismay.

Inspiration

I’ve been struggling with keeping up with my blog, and I know that is bad bad bad, so I realized I need to talk things I know a lot about that relate to what I do, and those are movies and TV shows that are fantasy in nature. I mean it’s how I got to this writing thing in the first place. Since I couldn’t read right away, I’d have to say it was due to the movies and shows my family and I watched. I’d like to highlight the ones that are my earliest recollections. I’ll only talk about two today, because I know we all have better things to do on a Monday; but hey, maybe I’m not alone, and this will take you down memory lane as well.

Best Childhood Fantasy Movies

Sleeping Beauty

SB

Even though this movie came out in 1959, I vividly remember driving in the snow to see this movie in the theaters. It must have been a re-showing, and until that darn awesome mermaid, Aurora was my favorite princess of all time. I won’t leave out Maleficent who, to this child, was the scariest villain ever. It was the magic that drew me, the simple glowing fairies, the eternal cursed sleep, the animals dancing and smiling at her as she sang of love, all of it made me fall in love with the fantasy world.

I did see Maleficent when it came out on DVD. I enjoyed the twist in that story versus the Disney version, but I won’t ruin it for you by telling you what that is, I am not a sociopath. HAHAHA (That was non-evil laughing, maybe).

Sleeping Beauty

Beyond The Muppets

The Dark Crystal 

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Jim Henson and Frank Oz were, as always really, super ahead of their time with this one. I am sure it was a little scary for some kiddos who were the primary target for Henson in most of his work. The high fantasy and adventure tale focuses on elf creatures called Gelflings. Two Gelflings, Jen and Kira, go to task to save their world by returning a shared of crystal to its home. The Skeksis are frightening baddies that suck the souls of innocents, and I still see them in my mind when I am creating my monsters. Ack, their voices even, a screeching, a terrifyingly manic sound that doesn’t leave you, or me, ever.

The puppets, scenery, and story have stuck with me since I first watched it in the early 80’s. I’ve heard they are making a show on Netflix. Here’s one article I found, and it includes the teaser YouTube video I’ve pasted below. https://nerdist.com/dark-crystal-henson-netflix-tv-series/ 

I am totally binge-watching it when it comes out!

I’ll touch on more movies and shows in my next post. Maybe I’ll lean more towards Sci-fi next time since those are a huge part of my creative flow as well. Stay tuned for me to dork out with Star Wars and Star Trek, and please let me know some of your childhood faves.

Have an amazing week!

Parker

I’d love you to also join my newsletter to keep up with my new releases, writing, and more! Join today: http://www.parkersinclair.net/followme

My podcast is coming soon, which is appropriately titles Lit Musings. My friend, and fellow author, Jessica Ozment and I are co-hosts. I’ll post the link on my next blog, but here’s our sweet intro for now.

 

 

 

Cover reveal, sneak peek excerpts, & updates.

Dear Friends & Fans:

I hope everyone had a lovely weekend. My family and I had some serious sun, and subsequent heat time here in Virginia Beach. My kids were like little fishes the whole time, and I was in the water bringing them back each time the current took them down the shore. Parenthood isn’t for the faint of heart. 

Forbidden is done with its re-edits and will release Wednesday, June 6th. I hope you love Sandra’s story as much as I do. 


 

The cover for Only is complete. I hope you love it as much as I do. 

 

The Full Spread

 


Update on the madhouse!

Lucas, our black barn cat, is back outside and has changed from winter roley poley, to fit and trim wild cat. Of course, when it rains, he likes to be inside, and I think he gave me one of his rare smiles.

That is a smile, right?

Bodhi thinks his smile is better!
LOL


Only: The Alex Conner Chronicles Book Three

I am plugging away at Only re-read/re-edit, and it will be to the editor end of June. The plan is for a July re-release, so before that time comes, I’ll be dropping some excerpts and poems that I wrote a long time ago. The poems open each chapter in Only, which is a different set-up than the flashbacks found in Trustand Truth

Please enjoy an excerpt from Only.
WARNING: Some spoilers may be included below, so if haven’t read Truthor Forbidden, tread carefully. Oh, and there’s some “colorful” Alex language as well. 

(Only is NA paranormal love story & book 3 inThe Alex Conner Chroniclesseries)


Blinds drift back than forth as the wind shapes their destiny.
Flicker across my face—unending beams of sunlight.
Rainbows are seen upon damp eyelashes, kaleidoscopes surrounding.
Clarity of pastel colors, bright sparkles, slight heat.
Smoke rises, dancing, then disappears 
as it rides waves of wind and light.
Serenity fills this room.
I am happy falling asleep
 … inviting in the night.

If I didn’t have to keep my mouth shut and play along right now, I would tell the damn Fae king exactly what is on my mind. It would be something poetic and beautiful, something like: Listen, ass hat! Your evil lies and treachery will not work! I can see right through your lame-ass tactics. Do you really think you can take me down with some fairy dream dust? I am Alex fucking Conner, the strongest of my kind, so stop being a pussy and give it to me straight. What in the hell do you want from me?

But yelling into the dark, dank coldness of my jail cell will only give him the upper hand and probably have him deciding to starve me again, or maybe send his goons in to rough me up for real this time. Crap, I know I have to keep my new knowledge of what he is trying to do to me secret, but I’ve been down here for nearly two days since I saw Ryan, which could be weeks of worry back in my world, and the only people I have seen are the soldiers bringing me scraps for food and a medic making sure I’m not dying or dead. Their poking and prodding nearly had me choking one of them, but one’s kind of helpless when Fae bodyguards on steroids overtake me and I don’t have my power at my disposal.

I think it’s safe to say that I’m worried his minions could tell I was on to them; Nic’s eyes on my back could have burned a hole right through me. Plus, I might be using all these bold, brave words in my head, but the truth is, I only recently started reconnecting with my power in my own world, and I’m only mimicking what I’ve been told about my strength and heritage. I’ve only had a taste of what I am truly capable of a few times. Once when I was fourteen and shoved Steven into a hell dimension, another when I brought Shane back from the brink of death, and then just recently when I helped my father break free from the Demon who had possessed him, the fiend having succeeded in making my dad do terrible things before I even knew he was still alive. That was back when I thought my next step in protecting our world was to find the puppeteer behind my dad’s entrapment. All of that changed the night I thought the only action I’d be seeing was to do with finally having Ryan’s naked body in my bed. Boy, was I mistaken.

Okay, enough dwelling and pouting. It’s time to figure out how in the hell I am going to get out of here. I can’t risk my friends getting caught, which is why I warned Sandra that dream-Nic was asking about her through our barely holding on, crazy telepathy-thingy. Apparently Ryan had already told her; how he knew when he wasn’t there is a mystery to me. Sandra and I agreed to lay low and not contact each other. Who knows if the king could use it against us? At least Ryan and Valant gave me another tool to help me fight the king’s attempts to take my memories, my life, from me. The weight of the small metal bead where it lies attached to the feather in my hair is nearly as light as the feather itself, but I know it’s there and it’s saved me more than once. Touching Ryan in the Fae dream, his skin, his body pressed against me was as real as the last time we held each other; it makes sense—our minds are the reason we see, feel, and taste anything. Too bad that, for the most part, mine is being hijacked by King Douche.

The door at the top of the stairs opens. Its wood-and-stone body dragging against the floor makes my skin crawl with its grating chorus. I think I may have gotten daddy-dearests attention. He deserves the nickname. The King rarely speaks of Lestan, but he made sure that I knew he blamed me for his son’s death. Although it seems he wants someone else in his world. Whois the puzzle, oh, and why. Maybe it’s time to ask for forgiveness again. Ask to try to bring Lestan back? Hard to think that will work when it’s pretty obvious that the king does not care. Goddess, what in the hell do I say to someone who’s crazier than I am?

Footsteps, from more than one person, clump down the steps. I look at the world’s worst friendship bracelet there on my wrist, ready to burn my ass to shit if I try to escape. No, I won’t be busting out when the cell door opens, especially now I can no longer reach Gaia’s power to send me home. That connection has been severed, though I know its raw energy flowed into me in the dream. Must have been coming through Ryan, just as it was when we stood together against the Demon in my father. Not to mention, and I mean really this is bullshit, I am a dimensional traveler, which is super cool, but when I really need to use it, can I? No, I can’t. Fricking sweet.

My pity party is cut off when two medics, one a burly older woman who’s been the main angel of death for me the last few days leading the march, while a new and much younger assistant follows with her head down. I try to get a better look at the newbie but not only is her face hidden by long red hair, it also appears to be shifting. She’s using a cloaking spell. Well, I’m familiar with that trick. I’ve used it on many occasions. Wonder rises to the surface, along with curiosity about what’s going on here and if her companions know what she’s doing. I keep my mouth shut for now. Something pokes at my awareness, something calming and reassuring, but also teeming with suppressed vengeance.

Stay tuned for more excerpts from Only, and from Synced, my new Sci-fi fantasy novel coming Fall 2018.

Let me know what you think about the new cover for Only, and don’t forget that Forbidden releases next Wednesday, June 6th. Join my newsletter for a FREE ebook & a FREE sample today by clicking here

Thank you for all of your support, encouragement, and the lovely reviews from you all. I love hearing from you, so keep the emails coming. 

Parker

Webpage: http://www.parkersinclair.net

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ONLY RELEASE IMAGE

The Best Powerhouse Female Fantasy Writers in Urban Fantasy Romance: Part 1

Dear Fans & Friends:

I hope everyone is finally warming up in your neck of the woods. I think we’ve gone straight from winter to summer in Eastern Virginia. I’m sorry that I’ve been off of my blog for a while. Changing careers, writing, focusing on re-branding my urban fantasy/paranormal romance series, The Alex Conner Chronicles, and the reorganization my life (does this really ever end) have interrupted my blogging plans. My plan for the next few months is to highlight some of the authors who have inspired me in the fantasy genre. So let’s get to it!

Amazing Female Authors

It still shocks me when I think back to the books I’ve read. I don’t think I noticed that mainly men wrote the fantasy books I poured over, but, maybe I did. Perhaps subconsciously I thought about it, and it’s why I never believed I could do it. Then I found Robin McKinley, Kim Harrison, Jeaniene Frost, Patricia McKillip, and Cecy Robson. I watched True Blood on HBO and had to pick up Charlaine Harris’ books and started to feel like; you know what, I can do this. I had been writing all of my life, my mind created worlds, characters and creatures non-stop. I just had to do it.

Motivation

The sassy, strong, powerful female leads in these novels are alive and kicking ass in these contemporary, epic fantasy, urban fantasy, and paranormal novels. All my genres of interest had light touches on my first three, and very messy, chapters that I had put together. These female authors continue to motivate me to do and to get better at my craft,  so I wanted to highlight the ones I feel have brought me to where I am now. Though many of them may have a newer series and books out, I am focusing on the books that moved me, that set my butt into gear, and brought my stories to life.

May’s highlighted author is: Kim Harrison.

Kim Harrison: The Hallows Series
I own most of the paperback and hardbacks for this series, and I’m on my 2nd read-through. Yes, they are that good.  Rachel Morgan is an earth witch and a runner, think paranormal bounty hunter. The series starts out with Rachel leaving a government agency where she’s being treated like to crap to work on her own. Little does she know she’ll soon have two partners, a smart-mouthed pixy and a vampire who loathes herself.

Magic and Action

You’ll immerse in a world that exists after humanity was nearly wiped out by a virus, and the supernatural species came out of hiding. This series packs loads of action, humor, some romance, and magic. The books introduce more and more details about the other species as you move through it, and lots of baddies for Rachel to face off against in ever novel. There’s something for every paranormal lover with witches, demons, werewolves, pixies, vampires, fairies, elves, trolls, and others.

Below are only some of the books, but I wanted you to see her first one, Dead Witch Walking, and then the progression. There are 14 books in all, one of them is a prequel. Rachel also pops up in Kim’s new series about Peri Reed.

Kim has been truly inspirational in my writing and was the first writer to show me all the badass main character can be, strong, weak, clumsy, and unstoppable. Don’t miss this series, Rachel Mariana Morgan is one of the best Urban Fantasy characters out there.

June’s author highlight and another author who has strongly impacted me and my writing will be, Jeanine Frost, and her “The Night Huntress Series.”

Thank you for taking the time to read over my blog.  I love hearing from fans, so please contact me at any time!

For free books and samples, join my newsletter today by clicking here.

NEW NEWSLETTER PARKER

Parker

Webpage: http://www.parkersinclair.net

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March Madness & Book Love

Hello Friends & Fans!!

How is everyone? I hope some of you are seeing buds and unfurling leaves on the trees, though I know we’ve been in freezing rain, so our daffodils are season confused.

I’m plugging away at Truth’s re-edits. It should be in my editor’s hands next week and ready to re-release the end of March. If I’m going see any of you at my events this year, I’ll have it with me! Woohoo. In the meantime, I have a new excerpt for you below.

My cover artist and I are also working on re-doing the cover for Forbidden, the next in the series and Sandra’s first novel. I’ll send a sneak peek in a couple of weeks, but one hint, this one is steamy!


At the crazy house,  the cats have been taking over our room and now our bed. Lucas is quite the ham for the camera! He scares me a little, his teeth and claws are huge and extremely sharp. LOL

“Meow Meow, I won’t hurt you, I purrmise”
(Yeah, right! I’ll keep  my digits thank you.)


Scroll down for a new excerpt from Truth which is re-releasing the end of this month, 2 giveaways with over 25 other authors from paranormal mystery, thrillers, sci-fi, & fantasy.
TRUST FRONT COVER
OH, and don’t miss the FREE book link for the newly re-released and rebranded version of Trust: The Alex Conner Chronicles Book One. 
Click here for your FREE ebook


Truth front cover
Here’s a new excerpt from the re-releasing ARC version of Truth.
(Alex finally finds out about mom’s past.)

We whoosh in a circle within the magical dome; I grip my chair with white knuckles as we spin around like Disney Tea Cups. I seriously think we are going to take flight, but instead, the world around us begins to fade, and a new one drops around us reminding me of a Star Trek simulator. I can see the familiar surroundings of the Colorado National Monument, near Grandmom’s land. Towers of rock loom over us and the sun is beginning its true display of color in fantastic desert sunset fashion. I’m just getting my bearings when I hear voices and instinctively take a defensive tackle’s crouch behind my chair. Ya, like its vinyl measiliness is going to protect me.

“Ease up there, Bruce Lee, no one can see or hear us. We’re merely observers on this ride.” She cackles at me and places Silver-Vex in her bag before removing a canteen and taking a long swig, of what I do not know. She offers it to me, but I shake my head emphatically. This is already trippy enough. I don’t need any of Dana’s special anything at the moment. Besides, I have a few words for her chuckling ass.

“Well, maybe a little heads up on how this is going to work would have been nice!” I snap, standing out of my crouch and furiously brushing off my clothes, though nothing is there. “It’s not like we just did this yesterday. Or ever, for that matter.” I know it’s the anticipation making me tense. Even though I may get bruised and battered from time to time, I know I am always safe with her. I think…
The voices come from over a small rise, so Dana and I begin to walk toward the ebb and flow of the excitedly happy tones. I am pretty sure that we are far into a trail of the Monument, so there is no mistaking what lies ahead. Muted reds, pinks and gold’s surround us as we walk along the trail flanked by rocks, cactus, brush, and the occasional skittering lizard.

This is the Devil’s Kitchen Trail, the rock formations unique and powerful. I tingle from the distinct and familiar ebb and flow of Gaia’s Earthen energy, not only in the desert floor, but also from the four figures huddled together on the massive rock centerpiece. Towering over a boulder that is big enough to easily fit the four young adults are natural pillars forming the desert’s skyscrapers. It is both awe-inspiring and, at this moment, unsettling as some of the power signatures on that boulder are wired so hot that it is obvious that they are capable of great and terrible things.
My mother’s blond hair drifts above her head, forming a stunning vision of twinkling golden stars amongst sunlight-tickled strands. A strong, tanned hand smoothes down the strands before resting on her side and pulling my mom close. She eases in comfortably, and my breath catches. This is my father; I know it in an instant.

I can’t help myself, and apparently my feet can’t help me either as the bumbling idiot that I am nearly bites it into solid rock as I make my way down the trail to get a closer look. I mean, can you blame me? I have never seen this man in the flesh, this man of my flesh. I find another large boulder and clamor atop it to get a better look my parents. My dad’s long dark hair tumbles around his eyes, thick locks of brown. I touch my own hair knowing that I am his child; I have his hair, his lips and his…I gasp at the sight of his green eyes. Those familiar orbs are intensely staring at my mother and the feeling of love he is giving off toward her is enough to take my breath away and to understand what this man means to her, and why she fell apart when he was gone.

“Okay, lovebirds, do you think you two can focus on something other than each other for a second? Are we going to do this or not?” The source of the voice grates on my nerves, not only for its interruption, but also for the obvious fact that the bad and powerful mojo I am picking up is primarily radiating from him, the other guy. Why are my parents here with this creep? Can’t she tell he is bad news?

“Why is my mother here with that guy? Can’t she sense that?” I speak out loud, shaking my head and berating my mom with my eyes. A hand lands softly on my shoulder. I jump at Dana’s touch even though I knew she was here.

“The redhead next to your mom is her best friend Gillian, and that boy whose intentions you are rightfully questioning is Gillian’s boyfriend Bryan. Your grandmother was never a fan of your mother’s friends, aside from your father, Alexander that is; perhaps she sensed something in Bryan as well. These four were inseparable since they were kids; all very bright, but like most young adults they could be reckless and stuck in their own worlds and desires.” Part of me knows she is also talking about me and my teeth gnaw at the side of my lip. His name, so close to my own, continues to make my longing to meet him fanned by a tumultuous flame. 

“You have to remember that you’re a very strong, observant Earthen Protector, and a Healer. You can sense things that others, who may have been the strongest of us at the time, couldn’t even pick up on. I agree that Bryan appears to be more than just an annoying twit, but regardless of what we think now, they were close friends and they obviously trusted each other. Plus, your mother has a lot of mixed wiring going on at this moment.” Dana glances at my mother. I follow her gaze and see my mother carefully hold and at times, caress her stomach. She is glowing and smiling, I mean really fucking smiling like I have never seen her smile before.

“Are you kidding me? Am I in there? I’m here? Well, I guess kind of here right now? Aren’t two worlds going to collide into cosmic destruction or something?” Dana places her hand on my arm, attempting to calm me. Feeling my legs quiver, I lower myself onto the large rock we’re standing on.

“Easy there. You’ve seen way too many movies. You’re like a little zygote in there, so there’s no chance of you meeting yourself; not today at least.” Ha, ha, isn’t she funny? I, on the other hand, can’t stop staring at my mother, at her hand touching where I would continue to grow, and my stunned realization that whatever happens right here, right now, I was a part of it on some level. 

Truth: The Alex Conner Chronicles Book Two coming March 2017

booksweeps

Today, I have a fun surprise that I’d like to share with you. I’ve teamed up with 25
fantastic authors to give away a huge collection of paranormal mysteries & thrillers
to 2 lucky winners, PLUS a brand new eReader to the Grand Prize winner!

Oh, and did I mention you’ll receive a collection of FREE ebooks just for entering? ;D
You can win my novel, Trust, plus books from authors like Duncan Simpson and R.S. Broadhead

Enter the giveaway by clicking here:

Good luck and enjoy!


arcane

The SciFi Roundtable Contest!

Over $100 in prizes, including:
Autographed Paperbacks
$50, $25, Amazon Gift Cards
Art of the Arcane Bookmarks and Postcards
Three chances to win.
Daily entries to increase your odds!

Click here to enter and get your hands on lots of freebies!


I hope you enjoy your week, and thank you for all of your support and encouragement. I love hearing from you, so keep the emails coming.

Love,

Parker

Webpage: http://www.parkersinclair.net
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Twitter: @Parker_Sinclair


A Trip Without the Kiddos: A writer’s first couple’s vacation far away & a babysitting adventure for the in-laws Part 1!

My husband and I have been away two times, a total of 3 nights, since our first daughter was born in 2009. I mention this not to complain or whine about the lack of time away from our girls; no, I am merely highlighting it for each reader to somewhat understand why I was such a basket case leading up to our trip out of the country.

This one trip will be longer than the two trips combined in the last eight years. Yes, I’ve flown across the country to Cali and Las Vegas, and my husband has taken work trips, but this time we were leaving together and enlisted the aid of two amazing grandparents. Was I excited when my hubby surprised me with a trip to the Bahamas? Um, yeah! But when the week started to close in, and we realized how unprepared we were to leave the girls for this amount of time and distance, the mental hang-ups took over.

Here’s a little more background. Our first trip away was for two nights, one night the girls were already asleep when we snuck away, and we were only an hour away. The second trip was two hours away (oh boy) and only for one night. So, we are way out of practice, and we don’t have family close by to whisk away on a whim. We also have a little 5-year old teeny tyrant, which made for quite a bit of stress and worry about how she’d behave for her grandparents.

I like to travel, my husband hates to fly, and we love to explore around Coastal VA since there’s so much to do nearby and neither of us is from the area. Our other little trips had been perfect. This time, we were actually “getting away.” Yes, our trip was super quick (about 3 hours each way), it’s not as if we crossed the pond or took a day to fly to Australia, but it was a big deal for us. Even packing became daunting. All I could think about was how far I was going to be away from the girls, that my husband wouldn’t be home either, and what about the crazy farm we have with a huge labradoodle, our 13-year-old rescue, and mini-panther cat that will cling to my in-laws window screen begging to be let in. I mean it’s crazy enough when we’re all there, and now we were taking ourselves out of the picture.

Our youngest (see tiny tyrant mentioned above) is the wild card. She finds danger, a hint of trouble, and she doesn’t do well with change, or restaurants really. She’s what you call a “strong-willed” child, and the will is strong with that one. My other daughter is a pleaser, she loves to help, and we had no worries about her, or about my in-laws. It was the teensy emergency room heat-seeking missile I concerned about, and yes, that is all my issue for sure! So, as every sane mother would do, I begged her not to sniff out and find trouble, to not touch, climb on, or do this or that. My oldest insisted she’d watch over her as well, but that made me feel even guiltier. I struggled; I may have needed a Xanax, to be honest. I couldn’t even show my husband how thankful and excited I was because I was terrified about the what if’s while we were gone.

One night my husband brought two brandy glasses with a small amount of whiskey in them for us to drink down after dealing with my panicking nature for a couple of days. Yes it helped, for that day, and then the other days came, and we have to review our wills, leaving emergency medical consent, get friends as a back-up, and on and on. At one point the hubby said, “this is the last time I’ll plan something like this.” That just made me sad, and I want to smack myself out of it like the lady freaking the hell out in Airplane. This was a couples vacation, a chance to explore a new place I’ve never experienced before. It’s going to be an adventure for us as a couple, and a retreat for me as a writer. I was thrilled to reconnect with him, to be inspired for my writing, to research for my new books and this very blog. Little did I know my first blog would be all about the panicky mother who feared flying away from her kids to the Bahamas, alongside her awesome husband who is terrified of flying period, what is wrong with us!?!

End of Part 1.

Coming soon, Part 2: We make it to paradise, but what’s happening at home?

Thanks for reading and I’d love to hear your similar stories or comments!

Parker

 

Parker Sinclair
Founder, Owner & Author
Rawlings Books, LLC
http://www.RawlingsBooks.com
Author of Trust: The Alex Conner Chronicles Book One, Truth: The Alex Conner Chronicles Book Two,  Forbidden: An Alex Conner Chronicle Novella (Book 2.5), & Only: The Alex Conner Chronicles Book Three adult urban fantasy/paranormal romance novels, and the YA Epic Fantasy/HEA Romance novel: Eve of the Exceptionals. Check out samples on Amazon, Smashwords, BN, Kobo, & iBooks.

 

How It All Began

I’m often asked when and how I started writing. When I think back, most of my writings were either journal entries or poems and lyrics. I love music, something my family ingrained in me from birth. Perhaps that’s why my writing often has a lyrical tone. I enjoyed poetry, still do, and I have used my previously written poetry books in my newest novel, Only: The Alex Conner Chronicles Book Three, using entire or partial poems to begin each chapter. It was incredible to go back in time by using writings that both brought back memories and reawakened raw emotions.

When I released Eve of the Exceptionals, I was able to go into local middle and high schools to speak to students about my journey to becoming a writer and to read from the new YA epic fantasy adventure/happily ever after romance. After working in education in some capacity since I was eighteen years old, it was nice to come back to the schools and have left a lasting impression. From book clubs with fifteen students to multiple class filling an auditorium, each presentation carried a special message about chasing your dreams, following your heart, overcoming even the toughest of roadblocks, and finding your way back.

At the end of each program I took questions, and nearly every time I was asked what guidance I can give to anyone hoping to write a book. The best advice I provided, and still choose to today, is just to let your inhibitions or any feelings of perfection go, and just write. Don’t get stuck on finding the right word, or describing a scene as descriptively as possible. Get it all down first. The story is in your head and I’ve found the process is very organic, so you will get to where your going, and even make some fascinating detours along the way.

The other common question was about how I deal with writer’s block. I’ve found that the more agitated I got with myself for not writing, the worse my wrier’s block became. I think the block can sometimes be our mind telling us to take a break. After the block had gone away, I found my ideas and creativity was overflowing. Other times, I switched to another story idea, or blog, and then came back to where I was stuck–that also seemed to shake things loose.

Whether you are a writer, or dreaming of becoming one, I think we are happiest when we are writing in some capacity. That can be in a journal, writing poems and songs, working on a book, or writing a blog. Just as with the students I visited in my city, I hope sharing my story can help you write yours!

Peace and love always!

Parker

Don’t forget to check out my newsletter link with contest, pre-order info, sales, new authors, and much more! http://mailchi.mp/f48bb531145a/parker-sinclairs-new-updates-contests-more-for-may-900833 

Check out the teaser for the cover of Only: The Alex Conner Chronicles Book Three.

Now available for pre-order on parkersinclair.net/buy-a-great-book .

Cover release is June 30th!!

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Eve of the Exceptionals Sale! 99 pennies the whole month of June!!

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Parker Sinclair is the Author of Trust: The Alex Conner Chronicles Book OneTruth: The Alex Conner Chronicles Book Two, & Forbidden: An Alex Conner Chronicle Novella adult contemporary fantasy novels and my first YA Epic Fantasy novel: Eve of the Exceptionals. Only: The Alex Conner Chronicles Book Three available now for pre-order. Official release date is July 14th! Check out samples for all of my books on Amazon, Smashwords, BN, Kobo, & iBooks.

Parker Sinclair’s 2017!

Hi Everyone! I hope the winter has been going well for each of you. I’ve been busy busy! Eve of the Exceptionals (YA Epic Fantasy) was released January 22nd and did amazingly with pre-sales and is continuing to generate a buzz and has been receiving some awesome reviews.

After only a short break once Eve was released, I have started work on Only: The Alex Conner Chronicles Book Three. I am at the halfway point, and it is slated to come out in June 2017. On top of that, I have been asked to write a short dark fantasy story for an anthology titled: The Aching Darkness ~ A Dark Fantasy Anthology. Four other authors will be joining me, and this powerhouse project will release in June as well. I will highlight one of the amazing authors joining me in each newsletter, so check out this month’s author, Alexia Purdy, below.

My upcoming children’s picture book, Jake the Growling Dog, is in illustration and will be out July 2017. I am excited to have local artist Kerrie Joyce creating Jake’s world (check out the incredible cover for Eve of the Exceptionals that she created). This fun & fuzzy book focuses on accepting others differences and includes a loving kindness activity for families, schools, and counselors.

I’ve also been booked at many local schools to do readings and talk about my path to becoming an author. I love connecting with students, and I will definitely be writing more YA and children’s books in the future. I’m so excited about my releases this year and the fun events I’ll be attending. My current calendar is below, but there are many more to come!

As always, please feel free to contact me at any time to talk about my books, the writing process, to request signed copies, or for speaking engagements. All of my links are below, and I have also added my presentation booking form as well. Spring is coming, so get ready for some warmer weather, and some fun reads!

Parker

 

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Eve of the Exceptional
YA Epic Fantasy
Available now!!

Click To Buy Now!

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The Alex Conner Chronicles
An ongoing Urban Adult Fantasy/
Magical Realism Series

Click to Buy!

Introducing Alexia Purdy: Alexia is a USA Today Bestselling author who currently lives in Las Vegas and loves spending every free moment writing or hanging out with her four rambunctious kids. Writing is the ultimate getaway for her since she’s always lost in her head. She is best known for her award-winning Reign of Blood series, and A Dark Faerie Tale Series.
Alexia Purdy’s Amazon Page: https://www.amazon.com/Alexia-Purdy/e/B005DP5796/

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Alexia Purdy’s Collection of Fantasy Tales
Now only .99 on Amazon!!

Click to Buy

Links:
Webpage: http://www.parkersinclair.net
Purchase my books: http://www.parkersinclair.net/buy-a-good-book
Amazon Author Page:  http://amzn.to/1XIDwzO
Facebook Fan Page: https://www.facebook.com/ParkerSinclairbooks/
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/parker.sinclair.73
Instagram: @ParkerSinclairauthor Twitter: @Parker_Sinclair
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/9860680.Parker_Sinclair
Blog: http://www.parkersinclair.net/blog
Youtube:  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCWQE3qvMyB5DEZ9wwdz8rOQ
Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/Parkersinclair

Presentation Request Form: https://goo.gl/forms/ULfKVjT6Hbwx1jDI2
 

Yes, it’s dark inside

Yes, it’s dark inside

I’m perfectly well aware that many of my Alex Conner stories have grit, darkness, and sadness within their pages. But, I also know I have made them heroic, full of humor, and for some of the characters and readers, life changing. Alex’s backstory was something I struggled with. As with most central characters, I wanted, no needed, her to have overcome incredible odds and intense circumstances. One night in 2000, after hours of dancing with friends in San Diego, one of my closest friends opened up to me about what a man did to her when she was a child. I was so completely heartbroken for her as I lay there watching her always smiling face fall into sadness, but then it came to me that I can share her story and give to her a powerful ending to that nightmare within my story. She was gracious in allowing me to merge parts of her into the Alex character, and I hope the ending of Trust gave her something in return, something for all who have been abused. She is a survivor and someone I truly look up to every day.

What I didn’t count on was the transformation I would have now two years later. Yes, I put pieces of myself, my experiences, and piece of the people I’ve met in my life into each part of the first book, but I wasn’t fully aware that I was also healing from my own past. Parts of Alex took on characteristics of a young me trying to claw my way out of toxic and abusive relationship that lasted over two years. These relationships, they don’t start out that way. It’s a slow process where love, or what feels like love, comes first. Then the first violent act is one disguised as protection or jealousy, and a young girl mistakes that for unbridled love- a prince charming fighting for her honor. For me, the ugly side of him reared its head most often in conjunction with his drinking. As we became closer, it was revealed that he was a victim of his own abuser, a continuation of a cycle he was dragged into, seemingly without a choice, a way out, or even understanding of what was happening to him, to us, and to our future relationships.

No one would understand, as even my friends and family could not fathom why I was with this boy. Even my grandfather was taken aback when he wore a hat to meet him for the first time. Maybe an insignificant thing to a teenage girl raised in a different time, but looking back I can now clearly see the disrespect that my grandfather immediately saw and felt. And yes, I stayed even though there were multiple times I was scared of him, when a blade danced along my back, when I was pushed so hard I fell down a flight of stairs, when he attacked my friends verbally and at one time physically, we he lied, cheated, swore, threw things, hit his own friends, and even fought his own abuser, his father, amongst delicately wrapped Christmas presents while his mother wailed in the background, her tears reflecting a rainbow of color amid the twinkling lights.

When you love someone, and see their own tortured past, would any of you stay and try to save them, as I did? Many of you would have walked away long before I did. I tried, many times. Our relationship was tumultuous. Broken off and pieced back together more times than I can count. A staff member saw an interaction he and I had in the hallway, how he was talking to me and the way I was holding myself. Soon after I was called into the guidance office. While speaking with my counselor for the first time someone used the words “abusive relationship”. Yes, friends and family warned me away from him, but those words were powerful coming from someone outside of my life. When she called him in so we could talk, and I have seen him furious, but I have never seen him talk to an adult aside from his father in that manner. I could almost see steam rising off his body; his eyes bore into mine only once, telling me I betrayed him that this should have been our life, our secret to bear. How dare I tell this stranger a thing? And yes, we broke up, again, but we did get back together, even trying this battered relationship as I went away to college, but my counselor’s words always stayed with me, a warning in the back of my mind. I saw another counselor at college; it felt good to speak to someone who wasn’t close to me, who would listen to my secrets, who would help me listen to myself. So much so that I longed to study the human mind, psychology, and part of me longed to help others like me; however, that didn’t come till much later in life.

I left that abusive relationship behind many years ago. But some of the scars followed me, just as they did Alex. Trust was hard to come by, especially when dating, and some of the ways he treated me impacted my behavior, as if tendrils of the monster he turned into left a mark upon my being. I became jealous easily, was less confident, sometimes quick to anger, but one thing that stuck with me, helping me through it all when I didn’t want anyone to know what I allowed to happen, was my love of writing. Throwing my thoughts on paper led to poem books, many of which reflected my struggles with relationships. A novel was what I really hoped to write, and even though he never came to mind when I cycled through plots and character development, it was there, that darkness that had left a mark inside my heart and mind.

When I finally decided that I really wanted to continue my education, my high school counselor’s memory came back to me. Someone had saved me once, and even though it took time for me to really listen, I finally did. I wanted to be that voice for some other boy or girl who just needed to see and hear the truth. As I went through my master’s program in counseling it really shined a light on my life. There were parts of me I wanted to improve. Since I was going to be a mentor and counselor for young lives, I wanted to make sure I was someone they would look up to as well as someone they could learn from.

When Trust was completed twelve years after I completed my counseling program, I didn’t think of him, or the painful part of my past, at least not consciously. But as the years have gone by since the novel was completed, I have read books and posts about survivors of abuse and something in me stirred. I re-read the passages of how Alex felt when she had no control over her own life—the helplessness. How the abuse she suffered impacted her even when she thought she had gotten rid of her abuser for good. But in the end, he is gone and that part of her life is over. She could move on. She could forgive herself. Trust allowed my psyche to beat back my own lingering demons, to heal from what the relationship had done to me and to stop being so angry at myself for what I thought was weakness so long ago. So yes, this book was for me in more ways then I had realized. It is for all survivors of abusive relationships, for my friend, for anyone who has been a victim, who has felt helpless, and who has suffered at the hands of someone who controlled their body, mind, and soul.

Last year I finally revisited to the place I lived during high school and college summers, the place where this relationship began, where I was reminded that it truly existed. I never wanted to return to the small town in Colorado, I felt a relentless resentment towards this place we had moved to during my seventh grade year and that I never went back to after the Christmas of 2000. This summer I returned to visit family who still remained in the desert town of Western Colorado and I realized I hated who I was during many of the years I was there, but it had nothing to do with the actual place- the beautiful Colorado desert. It was truly a heart opening experience. I had finally allowed myself to love this place and to forgive myself. Yes, the old me had stayed because he had been only a child when he was warped into someone who didn’t know anything other than that type of love-a raw angry, controlling, terrible love. I am thankful that I was strong enough so that my part in that cycle of abuse was forever broken. As I shift away from myself, as it is my nature to be empathic and caring, I hope he has also found the strength to break the cycle. That he has love in his life a, genuine and kind love, one that he didn’t have from someone who was supposed to care for him the most.

Thank you for reading this soul-bearing post, and I hope everyone had an amazing holiday season!

Parker

Parker Sinclair

Founder, Owner & Author

Rawlings Books, LLC

http://www.RawlingsBooks.com

Author of Trust: The Alex Conner Chronicles Book OneTruth: The Alex Conner Chronicles Book Two, & Forbidden: An Alex Conner Chronicle Novella adult contemporary fantasy novels and Eve of the Exceptionals (YA fantasy releasing January 2oth, 2016).

Eve of the Exceptionals

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