What do you use to edit your photos? I’ve been trying to get into book edits more and I love what I see, but what do you use?
I currently have an iPhone 11 Pro Max and usually use the Picart app and have recently been using the Lightroom app to edit the color on the picture. I paid for the VIP in Picart because I use it so much and like all there settings, I just wish it had more of a font choice. I also paid for the Light room present package, it’s on dad right now for $9.99/year.
I made a goal in 2020 to read 200 books, anyone else make a book goal on goodreads? I thought this would be easy with the amount that I read….I was wrong. Now I want to believe that goodreads just wasn’t counting my read books right but at the end of 2020 I had finished a total of 60 out of that 200 book, (my goal for 2021 is still 200). With reading, in my mind, so few one would think that picking the top 10 books that was read would be easy. It’s not. One of the best things that did happen this past year was having my twin, Jac, convince me to start a book blog with her. We get the chance to share our thoughts on all these amazing books that people write, and we have met a few authors that we now call friends, the power of the internet! But not only that, it helped me be held accountable for actually writing reviews. I will honestly say I was a reader that would read the book and move onto the next, not anymore. I understand so much more how authors crave these reviews, plus I enjoy sharing what I thought. Enough about this, lets get onto my top 10 from 2020
***This is my personal top 10 from what I read in 2020***
10. Fable by Adrienne Young
I did not put this book down, I may have found myself still reading to the wee hours of the morning. Fable lives for the sea. She has been by herself on an island that is filled with peril and thieves. She has a power, one that she is rare and deadly if others found out about it. She takes her change to get off, barley making it upon West’s ship. This story has heat and action that will get your heart pumping in anticipation.
9. Flawed by Auryn Hadley & Kitty Cox
This was the first book that we did a review on our blog for! This is about Dez, a girl gamer who has…a lot of issues. She was traumatized when she was younger and as an adult is still having problems. Chance gives her a chance to change things. They build a world together that makes my gaming heart bleed. This book will make you cry but in the end is worth the heartache.
8. Call of the Blue Heron by Sara Hill
Jac and I reached out on IG and asked for books to review, we got…a lot. I don’t think she was prepared for the amount of requests we received. This is how we met Sara in her debut book, Call of the Blue Heron. I had been going through a book slump, everything seemed to be the same. This book was such a breath of fresh air, it was delightful. This is a contemporary romance about Allie, a photographer who leaves her current life behind for a job in a small town of Idaho. There are things in her past that she is looking for and finds what her future holds. (ps love the new cover)
7. Cast in Wisdom by Michelle Sagara
Kaylin holds a special place in my heart. This is a series that I have been readying for the past 13 years and have enjoyed finding more and more about her past and her future with each new book. Kaylin is Chosen, marked with the runes of the Ancients. She stumbles upon an ancient knowledge thought to be lost since the fall of Ravellon. The Acadima was once the greatest seat of learning – but it is closed and must be opened. If you have not started your epic journey with the Chronicles of Elantra I highly recommend not starting here but with the first, Cast in Shadow.
6. Hunting Fiends for the Ill-Equiped by Annette Marie
This was a hard one for me to pick. There are 2 different series to read in this timeline, The Demonized Series & The spellbound Series. I am loving both of them and even better to note that they are also complete! This one gets me the most because of what finally happens, no spoilers but if you have read this book you know what I am talking about. Robin is our, not so, fearless heroin who is looking to find who killed her parents. With the demon Zylas’s help she gets every step closer. Robin has promised to send Zylas home, but will he go when the time comes?
5. Fires of Treason by Erin O’Kane
Not being able to remember what I did yesterday can be tough sometimes. Not having any memories from before you were 8 would be even worse, not knowing who your family is and then made a slave as a child is heartbreaking. What sick person makes a child a slave…the King of course. Unbeknownst to Clarissa, she is to be executed for turning 21. Everyone at the age of 21 gets blessed by the Mother Goddess, but not the slaves, so she must die. As the sword falls she is saved by one of the High Magicians, she is Blessed. If you are looking for a new series to read pick this one up right away in 2021, it was just completed and is a fanatic series.
4. The Rook by Frost Kay
I think it was the final 2 sentences that did it for me, the twists in this story, mind blown. Tempest is a lady hound, an assassin, she killed a lion to be made the first one. She is tasked with finding and killing the Jester, she succeeds…or at least that is what she tells the creepy King. Now as her story continues she must live 2 lives, one lying to her King, hes a creep its okay, the other trying to find all about the Jester and his court along with the rebellion that he runs. While Tempest will make up her own mind on what is right and what is wrong, will she be in time?
3. Seducing Hope by Adaline Winters
Natia Waterford is special, but she doesn’t know by how much and what she means to mankind. What makes her so special, to start she can read peoples auros. This allows her to gain insight to the types of people and creatures she is dealing with. Because of this rare gift she is tested with finding out what the infamous CEO of Reinheart and Hunter, Archan. This sex on a stick may be pretty to look at but with an ego that knows no limits and the ability to make women fall to their knees at the mere sight of him. I devoured this book and was heartbroken when it ended, cliffhangers will do that. I expect great things for the fearless Natia and can not wait to find out what happens next.
2. The Butcher by J. Bree
Alright this one…what can I say about the Butcher? Read it, read it again and be happy that book 2 is already out. The only reason I picked this one from J. Bree is because the Butcher is, the Butcher. He kills his enemies with a meat cleaver and has no remorse doing it, we love him for this. I could honestly almost fill my whole top 10 with J. Bree books, but I wanted to spotlight other authors also. Okay about the book, you get to find out Illium and Odette’s origin story. So much blood and sex, it is fantastic. Dark and broody and his steadfast loyalty to his family. Your blood does not automatically make you family, your choices do.
1. House of Earth and Blood ( Crescent City) by Sarah J. Maas
I waited on this book, I didn’t read it as soon as it came out. I both hate myself and love myself for this. Sarah J. Maas once again composes an epic tale, I cried…alot, happy tears, silent tears & the lovely sobbing ones, my husband may have been a bit worried. Bryce is a half-fae half-human working as a glorified secretary at Griffin Antiquities. A party girl with her best friend Danika. Leader of the Pack of Devils and possibly even the next Prime. Both girls are living life to the fullest when one drunken night Bryce goes home to find Danika and her pack dead. And not just dead but brutally murdered. The world building of the story and the depth of the characters is what gets me the most, the emotions written so well that you feel them.
That it, I did it! I read so many fantastic books in 2020, they helped make everything else seem easier to get through. Here is to looking for a brighter 2021 and many more books to be read.
Who can believe that this year is almost over. Holidays are upon us and winter is coming. Who knows with the year we have had when that ball drops time timer will just keep going instead of starting the new year…
Reading is an escape and we love finding new authors that have spun a fantastic tale. I was extremely excited when Kiri said she would answer our questions for our author spotlight. I first found her on Tiktok and she always brought a smile to my face with her personality. After finding out that had written Alys I had to pick it up, it is a must read and you can see my review here.
Onto the fun stuff.
Q: What got you into writing? My parents, I think. My father would read Shakespeare to me on Sunday mornings when I was very small and my mother had a love for mystery stories. Even wrote a mystery book, but I don’t think she ever tried to get it published except through one publisher only. She also probably was the one who really fostered my love of storytelling. And my older sister, Jessica. Jess always seemed to be writing and I looked up to her so much when I was little. I think the first thing I remember writing was mouse poetry? I think I was in 1st grade, and my sister and I really loved the Redwall books. I’d read some and she’d read me some. I remember drawing little mice doodles along with the poems. One was about two mice getting married and Father mole giving them a house. And then my teacher at the time, who meant well, bless her, made me read it to the class and while part of me remembers feeling VERY self-conscious… there was something about the entire class being interested in what I was reading where it really hit home that stories were meant to be shared.
Q:Why Alice In Wonderland? The books–In Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass–meant a lot to me growing up. I found a lot of comfort in them, like it was a letter to children that it was alright if to them the grown up world was a bit confusing, foolish, and didn’t make a lot of sense–because it was in fact confusing, foolish, and didn’t make a lot of sense. The word play, especially, I love. I’m honestly not very fond of a lot of the adaptations–the Disney film especially never sat well with me. The art style mostly, but the portrayal of the Cheshire cat especially. He didn’t strike me as clever–he struck me as dangerous. Maybe it was the voice acting, I’m not so sure. But I never got the impression that Alice wasn’t safe with him in the book. Sorry, I’m getting off topic. I do that. Ultimately, these books with their word play, their satiric play on society, their unconventional pieces of advice–they meant a lot to me. They still do. So when I set about writing Alys as an adaptation of those books, it wasn’t to really adapt the plot–firstly because Alice in Wonderland HAS no plot. It doesn’t. Love it to pieces, but if you’re going to adapt it, you need to give it a story because the source material isn’t going to help you there. Alice has no motivation–she’s not even like Dorothy trying to get home, she’s literally just wandering about meeting people–she doesn’t want to get anywhere in particular, she just wants to go somewhere, she’s literally quite aimless because she’s not really meant to be a hero. She’s our eyes into this world Lewis Carroll created for the Liddle children. So she doesn’t really have a character arc–well no one does–because that’s not what she was created for. She’s not meant to go on a journey, she’s the vehicle for OUR journey. And I’ve gone off the rails again. My point being, when making an adaptation, loose as it is, I wanted to create the same sort of assurance in someway for young adults and the young at heart that Alice in Wonderland had given me as a child–but updated for the sort of things you start to encounter as a young adult… such as depression, anxiety, and, unfortunately, suicidal ideation. It’s a delicate topic, but I don’t think we talk about it enough with younger people. My brother, may he rest in peace, had been contemplating since he was 17… and I wish he’d had more resources and support–or more importantly, I wish he’d felt he had the permission to ask for them.
Q: How did you come up with the characters from your book? Almost all of the characters have a vague allusion to a character in the original. Some are more obvious than others. Others pull a little from my life. Charlie is a mix of people I’ve known–oddly most of which is not my brother.
Alys, I will admit is pulling a lot from my mindset in 2013 when my brother passed away because this book was also a cathartic way to work through that trauma, growing up in a small town, as well as a few friends I grew up with in Aberdeen–and she’s certainly deeply flawed and in some ways problematic for that–which is off topic, but I feel weirdly important to talk about because sometimes we want to put characters up on a pedestal free from criticism? And gods, should Alys’ behavior be up for criticism and not at all be a model for behavior. She’s barely 18, she’s got a very narrow world view of experience so far, especially since she’s from a small town that is very obviously stuck in some bigoted mindsets, from an abusive home, and going through the trauma of losing her best friend to suicide. She has so much room to grow… but isn’t that what makes us root for characters? When we see those improvements and growth?
Q: Who is your favorite character from your book? I don’t think it will come as a shock to anyone who has read any of Alys so far that Smoke is probably my favorite to write. At least during this story. He’s a fun little peppering of sass. I could never write an entire book from his perspective, I don’t think, for that reason–maybe I could but I don’t think it would be the same, you know?
Q: What is the most difficult thing about writing? Fight scenes. Especially big battles. I’ve gotten better, but gods, it’s… hard for me. Describing them is a struggle for me. I don’t ever want to get bored while reading my own writing and that’s always a worry for me. I think also something that’s a big struggle is the really emotionally charged scenes. My wife has come into the room and seen me in tears after writing a scene. I’ve needed after care. And I think letting yourself be that vulnerable can be very hard–especially if you’re not in a mental place where you want to allow that. Being that vulnerable to write during quarantine was… impossible feeling.
Any recommendations for someone looking into writing? Read all the things. Watch all the things. I look at it like calories. You have to consume a certain amount of art and story in order to create it. Also, a big tip for dialogue, say it aloud. I mean it, read all of your stuff aloud. If you trip on saying it, it’s probable your readers will trip while reading it. And talking dialogue out can really help you get a feel for what feels natural, what feels stilted.
What is your favorite writing spot? I’m cliche, I LOVED sitting in a coffee shop and just tuning out the white noise. It’s a weirdly wonderful way to focus for me. I’ve been using Nois as a substitute, but it’s not the same. It will be a ways til I get back to that, though. Right now I write by the window and that’s pretty wonderful. When I lived in Seattle there is this coffee and creperie with a fireplace called The Jewel Box Cafe that was my favorite place to write. You could hear the rain on the windows, and the crackling fire, and the espresso machine… it was perfect. I haven’t quite found my equivalent here in California yet.
What is your favorite vacation spot? The UK. I can’t wait until we can go on our honeymoon, there are so many things I want to show Angelique.
What is your favorite food? Spicy tuna on crispy rice. And a good cheese board. Though I’m lactose-intolerant so I shouldn’t love that second one so much. But I do.
What is your favorite book/series? I don’t really have a favorite book… but I have some favorite word smiths. Gaiman and Pratchett being among them. I love how Tamora Pierce weaves a world together–and The Song of the Lioness was incredibly formative to me as a pre-teen.
What is coming next from you? Changeling is the next book in the Terra Mirum Series that’s coming out in 2021. I have a greenlight from my publisher. I wish I’d had it finished sooner, but I realized that meant dealing with my fear regarding memory loss and my relationship with my dad and coming to terms with his mortality and man… I was apparently not emotionally prepared to face that head on until this year.
Following her best friend’s suicide, Alyson Carroll descends into the realm of Dreams and Nightmares. In her quest to find home, she discovers that Charlie might not truly be gone after all, but when she meets Oswin, the prince of Terra Mirum, Alys must face her own fears and raise an army against The Nightmare Queen, or surrender as the world of dreams is consumed by terror and darkness forever.
I know what you are thinking, not another Alice in Wonderland series. You would be wrong, because yes….so much yes another Alice in Wonderland, an epic take that not only makes you laugh but cry as well.
Alys by Kirk Callaghan is not your everyday Alice, white rabbit & all that off with your head business. There is heartache and terror. More than just your everyday story. This book has fairies, nightmares & fantasy.
Alyson, Alys is a young woman stuck in the small town of Appleweed. Her best friend, Charlie, have plans though. Plans to get out, just as soon as they have saved up enough money. All plans are shattered when Alys hears from the sheriff that Charlie has taken his own life, he left her. With heartache at the front of her mind and nothing to hold her back she takes to leave. After leaving town she has a car accident that in turn leads her down a tunnel and through a wall where the mortal dreams reside, Terra Mirum. From there you get to follow along with Alys through all the twists and turns.
Don’t go thinking that this story will be like the Disney story, while there are similarities in some of the characteristics and some of the plot, the story itself reads to its own tune. I loved the take on painting the roses red. When Alys has a flashback to when her mom bought red roses, only to find out they were white. You can feel the fear young Alys has as she tries to paint them red with her watercolors. The hurt and pain that she feels makes your heart break right along with her.
There is so much more to this story than just Aly. While this is her adventure you get to meet the strong willed residents of Terra Mirum All of the different characters, Smoke and Oswin. The rhyme and reason, Robin & Basir. All fighting together, some through force and bribery, to defeat the nightmares that have escaped.
If you are looking for your next epic adventure make sure to pick this one up or add it to your TBR!
Ofda, we’re from Minnesota, has it been a minute. With everything going on today throughout the world you would think we would have more time for our blogging. But it doesn’t always turn out that way. Today’s author Spotlight is Adaline Winters
I first heard about Adaline when I read her debut book, Seducing Hope. If you haven’t pick this up yet, it is a must read. This book is on my top 10 for 2020 and absolutely devoured it. You can check out my review here. I am super excited to see what comes next from here. Onto the good stuff!
Q. What got you into writing? Brain surgery! I’ve wanted to write for many years, but lacked the confidence. However after some serious brain surgery (I guess all brain surgery is serious) i decided i had nothing to lose.
Q. How do you keep your story straight/organized? I outline each chapter on a spreadsheet, with specific elements highlighted, however, my characters often deviate from their story line and end up in a mess. Sometimes I just stare at the screen and say, “Well you got yourself into this mess, you can get yourself out.”
Q. What is your favorite character from your book? I love my main female character, Natia. She is sassy and sarcastic, but wears her heart on her sleeve. But I also have a soft spot for Zee, he’s protective, but also pushes boundaries.
Q. What is the most difficult thing about writing? Finding the time! I am a full time teacher, so it’s difficult to teach hormonal teenagers all day, then come home to find wayward characters have drifted off script.
Q. Any recommendations for someone looking into writing? You will often see the advice of the more you write the better you get, this is so true. Also if you are writing around a job and family like me, make the time each day to do at least 30 minutes – it will keep the plot straight so you don’t have to double back on yourself every time you come to write.
Q. What is your favorite writing spot? My desk is upstairs and overlooks the gardens of our neighbours. I enjoy writing here as it has big windows that let me look into the outside world for inspiration.
Q. What is your favorite vacation spot? I honeymooned in South Africa, that is my favorite holiday ever. But we often holiday in Scotland, which I find relaxing and peaceful.
Q. What is your favorite food? Anything chocolate related.
Q. What is your favorite book/series? Hidden Legacy series by Ilona Andrews
Q. What is coming next from you? ‘Surrendering Hope’ is the next book in the series – I’m hoping for a January 2021 release.
How far would you go to protect a secret that causes the dark supernatural world to hunt you?
Who would you hurt to prevent a prophecy from wiping out everyone on the planet?
When Natia Waterford, defender of humankind and self-declared badass, is sent to investigate a series of kidnappings, she’s forced to step into the world of the arrogant Archan Reinheart.
She soon becomes entangled in a fight for both the human race and her own life. The rules are simple: everybody’s a threat, everything you read might be false, and, above all, protect your heart.
Seducing Hope is the debut book by Adaline Winters. This book is absolutely fantastic, I could not put it down. If you are in a book slump, (don’t get my wrong I love me some Academy or Bully Romance) this is the perfect new adventure for you. Adaline builds strong characters with a stunning plot line that will keep you guessing till the end. Filled with magic and mystery.
You meet out fearless heroine, Natia Waterford, hanging upside down – not that she can figure this out – after being kidnapped. Little does she know that this turn of events will change everything and open her eyes to the reality of life, Natia is not human and the things that go bump in the night are real. As with most things she takes this head on and joins teams with her rescuer Duncan, fighting to keep peace and humans safe.
What makes Natia special is her ability to read others auros. This allows her to gain insight to the types of people and creatures she is dealing with. Because of this rare gift she is tested with finding out what the infamous CEO of Reinheart and Hunter, Archan. This sex on a stick may be pretty to look at but with an ego that knows no limits and the ability to make women fall to their knees at the mere sight of him, Natia must keep her guards up to not fall into his trap.
Archan Reinheart is on a quest. He has been searching for the jar and Pan for centuries. He is gaining on them both and will stop at nothing to insure mankind’s survival by destroying them both. He is instantly entrapped by Natia when they meet. No one has ever been able to shield themselves or refuse him, he needs to know more about her. Because both of their tasks align they agree to work together.
Whenever these two are in the same room you can feel the sexual tension. Archan wants to break Natia and own her and try and she might she just might let him. I loved how real Natia was about her emotions and her struggle with feelings. The push and the pull of knowing that he is bad for her and trying to stay strong while her body betrays her. The reality of the situations that they get into and the emotions that push them to their limits. The swing of bodies pushed together and heavy breathing filling the air, only to be pushed apart with the wrong words.
Without spilling to much, this is a slow to medium burn story. The storyline is fresh with so many twists and turns. The last chapter, now no cheating, blew my mind and the cliffhanger left me wanting more. Have no fear, book 2 is in the works. You can grab it on Amazon or Kindle Unlimited and make sure add it to your TBR list!
Harkwright Academy, the place where dreams can come true.
A three year stay will award you with an education that will rival any college and enough money to aid you in whatever career you choose to take.
I’m applying to give my mom the life she deserves, to fund my sister’s medical bills and so I can be sure to have the only thing I truly want.
For my family I will give them my time, my soul and my body, but I will never give them my heart. This place is going to test me and the guys very well could break me, but they won’t keep me down forever.
This is an 100k full length book that is part of a trilogy. It is a dark academy, which includes scenes of bullying. It is a why choose romance. Where the fmc will have more than one love interest.
What a book! BC Morgan! Wheew! I’m in love with these characters! This has a Royal Trials feel book to it and I love! Luna Carter is our MC on her way to Harkwright Academy where she must try and survive for a better life. The way to do this, is by getting a number and potentially marrying herself off to one of the Harwright men. In this year there are 15 men that she needs to impress. During her “inspection” this part was godawful. Not the writing, I just felt so bad for Luna! It made me all hot and bothered and all upset for her for the way the men were treating her. When the scores are reveled, Luna just can’t catch a break! While on her journey at Harkwright Academy, Luna finds some new friends, Liam the servant, Aernon the flirt who likes to watch her bake, and possible Tucker and Emmet. AND of course the prince himself, Mr. Dark and Moody who just seems to never be seen. A TON of twists and turns and a very captivating book! Can’t wait for book two, that cliffhanger with just give you a heart attack, Little Zero/My Star.
Those four words should have been a warning. They should have filled Violet with dread. But she was so focused on Rafe’s disappearance, she forgot.
The resistance was supposed to be fighting for a better world. A group of freedom fighters formed during the Monarch War, pushing back against laws that would see everyone enslaved. For a while there, they gave hope.
But with power comes corruption. The Society has been quietly amassing the strength and backing to become a real threat, and not everyone wants to use that power for good.
In a world torn apart by the death of monarchs, new leaders rise. Violet dives headfirst into the viper’s nest with one singular goal: rescue the stolen prince who possesses half her heart.
With the unwavering support of Jordan at her side, Violet knows she can face whatever the resistance throws at them. Even if she was the intended target all along.
Keep your friends close. Keep your enemies closer. Never forget the betrayals of the past.
The end of an era is here.
The third and final of Arbon Academy! With Violet, Raf, and Jordan, the action never ends. The book starts off right where our cliffhanger from book 1 left off and it just takes it up a notch from there. The action starts and never ends! Not as much Violence from Vi this book but I think it’s because she went all soft on us and caught some feelings for those princes. You know she did, she fricken kidnapped one of the kidnappers and made him take her to Raf. Oh and then there is the surprise from her past….ugh. The triggers for this book are not so bad, I just feel bad for Vi. What really traversed into her life, it was so unexpected! Don’t want to give away too many spoilers! Just lots of action, drama, STEAM, and love. HEA for sure. Noah and Massey are are still the duo twins and I’m kinda hoping for some standalones of Noah and Massey/Zach! Those two could run the world if they really put their minds to it. This book also has a lot of heartfelt mom moments between Vi and Jax, aka, the Queen. Vi really gets to see what a mom is supposed to do. AND Vi gets to spend some quality time in the springs again. 😉 The ending will make you cry, oh poor VI! I really felt for her in the last chapter, I really did. It was very heartbreaking and sad but the three of them will have their HEA!
We had the pleasure of interviewing the very talented Callie Rose! I’ve been following Callie since her very first book, The Help, and have LOVED how she has grown as an author. She has dipped into supernatural worlds, standalone, heartbreaks, reverse harem epicness, basically everything I love. And so many upcoming stories! I’m so excited for the Broken Bond series and Sweet Retribution series!
I want to also say that a lot of authors have been on the receiving end of social bullying right now. These authors are pulling their works because of this and other issues and thats never okay. When an author puts our a book, they probably put a shit ton of time, effort, and heart into it. It doesn’t matter if they received all the praise in the world for it, it really only takes one bad review, one mean comment to bring an author down. We want to be as strong as our characters, but in reality, words do hurt. Please remember that when you are demanding a book be finished, harassing an author to change something, or writing your reviews, these authors are real people, and will be affected by your words.
Q: What got you into writing? A: I’ve always loved stories. I’m a sucker for a good book, a good movie, even a poem or a song that tells a story. I started writing when I was little and kept up with it as a hobby for a long time. It was only after college that I started to get more serious about it and think about sharing the things I wrote with the world. It was a scary leap, but I’m so glad I took the plunge into publishing my work!
Q: What is your favorite book/series of yours? A: Hmm, that’s a really hard question. I guess the sort of “cheat” answer is that my favorite book/series is usually the one I’m working on at the time. When I’m in the middle of writing a book, I spend so much time with the characters that I’ll often dream about them. I get totally absorbed in the world and the characters that I’ve created, and I love that feeling. So whichever book I’m currently working on definitely holds the biggest piece of my heart and my focus.
But my favorite of all time? Ahh, I don’t know if I can pick! Maybe the Ruthless Games series. That’s my answer today, anyway, lol! Ayla is a character I relate to so much, and I love that she always manages to find her strength, even when she’s going through some shit.
Q: What got you into writing reverse harem books? A: I fell in love with the genre a few years ago, and I think it just really fits my writing style. I love writing strong female characters and complex heroes, and I think those qualities fit really well into reverse harem. I also love how much variety there is in reverse harem! I’m a sucker for both contemporary and paranormal romance, so it’s been really fun to create harems and stories in both worlds.
Q: What is your favorite character from your books? (Or another book/series) A: Ooh, another hard question. This answer totally depends on the day! I already mentioned that I love Ayla (from my Ruthless Games series), but I also really love Piper (the heroine from my Fallen University series). Piper is funny and snarky and not afraid to say what she thinks. She’s someone I’d definitely want to hang out with in real life. I think we’d have a blast!
Q: How did you come up with the characters from the series? A: Dreaming up characters is one of my favorite parts of writing. Usually they sort of reveal themselves to me slowly, long before I ever start writing the book. I’ll hear snippets of conversations in my head (does that make me sound crazy? I swear, I’m not, lol!) or get little flashes of their backstory. Sometimes I’ll see a picture of a person, and it’ll spark the idea for a new character. Something in their eyes or the way they carry themselves, some question I want to answer about them.
I think imperfect people are the most interesting to write about, so I spend a lot of time with my characters, finding out both their flaws and their strengths, their secrets and their fears. And then when it comes time to write them, I know them well enough that the words just flow out of me!
Q: What is the most difficult thing about writing? About writing reverse harem? A: For me, the most difficult thing about writing is the non-writing part. Being an indie author is amazing, but there are a lot of hats you have to wear, and I’m still learning the ropes of all of that!
When it comes to the actual writing, the hardest part is managing distractions. I’ve had to explain to my husband that when I’m zoned in at my computer with my fingers flying across the keys, I’m literally in another world and he should imagine I have a big “Do Not Disturb” sign hanging above me.
When I get into a groove, it feels like I’m seeing the whole book play out in my head like a movie, so I try really hard to make sure I don’t get pulled out of that zone when I’m writing. Luckily, my husband is 100% supportive and respects my writing time. My puppy, on the other hand? Not so much!
Q: Where do you get your inspiration to write? A: From all over. Pictures, songs, movies, conversations or interactions I overhear on the street. I think a lot of authors are “character gatherers.” We’re constantly creating worlds and people in our heads. Okay, now I definitely sound crazy…
Q: Any recommendations for someone looking to get into writing? A: Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t! And write every day if you can, even just a few hundred words. Even if you don’t publish the first thing you write, or the second or third, you’ll be building that muscle, figuring out what works and what doesn’t, and finding your voice.
Also, there are dozens of writing craft books out there, and tons of social media groups for writers and indie authors. They can be such a valuable resource!
Q: How do you handle bullying from social media? A: That’s a really hard question to answer. The indie author community and social media sphere are pretty small, and while that’s amazing in so many ways, it can also have a very ugly side.
I guess the biggest and most important thing for me has been to focus on the positive, to focus on the people who approach the world with kindness, and to make my tribe out of those kinds of people.
The world feels like a mess right now. 2020 has been so hard for so many people, and cruelty and bullying only bring more negativity into the mix. So I’ve just made the choice for myself, my family, and my own mental health that I’m not going to play that game.
Q: What is your favorite vacation spot? A: Can I pick a place I haven’t been to yet? Hawaii is on my bucket list, and I would love to vacation there someday!
Q: What is your favorite food? A: My husband makes a crazy-good shakshuka that I’m addicted to!
Q: What is coming next from you? A: Next up from me will be Sweet Salvation, the final book in my Ruthless Games series. It’ll be bittersweet to say goodbye to these characters, but I’m so excited for people to read the final installment!
Thank you again Callie Rose! We appreciate you taking the time to answer our questions and are exciting to read your upcoming works!
Valentina Rossi. She was our first and only love—our f*cking everything. She was also the one who tore us apart and crushed our hearts into a pulp. After all these years, we three are still desperately trying to fix the mess she made of us. Even if that meant pretending she was just a childish memory, pushed to the confinements of our mind, just so we could survive without her. But now she’s back. Demanding we give her what she stole from us to begin with; our very souls. But behind her tempting proposal, there is an underlying despair. We all feel it. We can even taste the bitter melancholy with each kiss we steal from her. Valentina ripped our hearts out when we were still too dumb and stupid to know any better. Now I fear if we give in to her again, there will be no coming back from the heartbreak that awaits all of us. She will end up killing what’s left of us, with every last breath she takes. And I’m not sure any of us can stop it.
What a heart wrenching closure! Breathe You by CR Jane and Ivy Fox created a roller coaster world for us to dive into. This book had me crying until the very last page! Literally, I just wasn’t sure if it was going to end and then bam…it’s done. I can’t write enough about how much I love these two authors and the characters they made in the Breathe You Duet. My Heart, My Soul, My Life, Logan Carter and Quaid were Vals everything. This book starts up right where book 1 ended. The power of love can bring people together, but can they stay? Val still has secrets and she is getting worse while the guys are falling in love with her even more. They are each dreaming of living a life with Val, planning to be together forever.
“I will love you for all my life”
And what an ending. So emotional and devouring of life. You will get those tingle under you nose when you read this and the sniffles will come! Huge 5 starts for these ladies!