‘Summer Daze’: FREE Chick Lit anthology!

‘Seasoned With Romance’ is a group of Aussie Chick Lit authors comprising:

Georgina Penney, moi, Carla Caruso, Laura Greaves, Belinda Williams, Samantha Stacey Bond and Vanessa Stubbs, and we’ve released another FREE Chick Lit anthology!Summer Daze cover [82841]

Summer… when hot days, steamy nights, surf, sand and sizzle make that first flush of new love feel dreamlike.

Book Boyfriend by Carla Caruso
Forget ‘opposites attract’ – book-loving Laila Laughton is done with guys who are nothing like her. So when she comes across the library receipt of a gorgeous bookworm who seems like her perfect match, she’s determined to track him down.

That Voodoo That You Do by Sarah Belle
Lila is sick of waiting for the criminally sexy Ben to ask her out, so she’s taking matters into her own hands. But when her attempts to harness the power of voodoo go awry, has she lost him forever?

Awkward Chocolates by Georgina Penney
Tom has been out of the dating game for a long time. A very long time. When his internet date makes a sexy request, can he rise to the challenge – or is it just too awkward for words?

Sunny, With A Chance by Laura Greaves
Brydie is moving on from a bad breakup with her adorable dog, Sunny, in their cute country cottage. City boy Leo doesn’t have time for a girlfriend, especially not a hippy artist with a ton of baggage. But Sunny may have other ideas…

Lily and Viv by Vanessa Stubbs
Teddy has been an outsider as long as he can remember. With high school finally behind him, does he have the courage to be true to himself with his dream girl by his side – or will school’s seductive Queen Bee lure him away?

Killer Heels by Samantha Bond
Tough Private Investigator Scully has landed the case of a lifetime: probing the disappearance of a celebrity lifestyle guru. She doesn’t need her gorgeous ex, police detective Logan, getting in her way – until her life is at stake.

Relax by the water’s edge and dive into this all new collection of summery short stories by six Australian chick lit authors.

Download your FREE copy here:

Amazon US 

Amazon AU

Smashwords

Itunes

Guest Post and Giveaway: Juliet Madison – Writer’s Craft Corner- 5 Ways to Choose Character Names…

Today my guest is the very talented Juliet Madison, author of Romagic Comedy, Women’s Fiction and YA Fiction. She’s not yet celebrated 12 months as a published author, but in that time has managed to release 2 Novellas and 3 Novels! Busy lady.

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Today also heralds the beginning of a new type of post for my blog – Writer’s Craft Corner, where we will discuss the craft of writing and hopefully pass along a few tips.

However, in celebration of Juliet’s newest release, The January Wish, which will be followed up next month with another newbie, February or Forever, here’s Juliet with some craft tips for us…

5 Ways to Choose Character Names

I love this part of writing, coming up with new characters. It’s like having kids but without the pain and sleep deprivation. Here are some ways to help choose character names:

1. Random, first name that comes to mind: Many of my characters are chosen this way. I simply choose the name that pops into my head if it suits the character and story. Not all are that easy though, some take a bit more work and consideration.

2. Ask on social media for ideas: Online friends are a great source of ideas, so ask away! Many are happy to help as it can be fun to come up with character names. You can brainstorm as many names as possible and then create a shortlist for first name and surname, or even get readers to vote on their favourite.

3. Hold a competition: Similar to the above, invite people to submit their choice for a name, and put all contributions into a draw for a prize. If you choose one of the suggestions, that person wins, or if more than one person has suggested the chosen name, you can put them into a random draw to pick a winner. Perhaps the winner can receive a copy of the book when it’s released, or a previous book.

4. Look up ideas: Use baby name books, name websites, the phone book, movie credits..etc, anywhere there is a list of names. Highlight those that catch your attention, then choose the most appropriate, or again, get feedback or votes from others to make the final decision. Remember to choose names that suit the character’s age… you can work out what year they may have been born and look up popular names for that year, so that your choice is suitable to the era in which they were born.

5. Find one with a deeper meaning for your story: This is an interesting way to find a suitable character name. Think of the traits your character possesses, or something meaningful about their heritage or the themes of the storyline, then look up names that mean those things. This can be a fun way of adding an extra element to your book. For example, if your character has warrior traits, he could be called Alex which means warrior or defender.

In my new novel, THE JANUARY WISH, I used tip number 1: the names popped into my head. Dr Sylvia Greene, Mark Bastian, and Grace Forrester. But now that I’ve written more books I’m finding I need to think a bit more carefully about names!

Writers, how do you choose your character’s names? Readers, have you ever read a book where you really disliked the character’s name?,

Thanks Juliet – great advice. I struggle at times with names, and change them often! I use the online registry for Births, Deaths and Marriages to determine which names were popular in a certain year or decade for authenticity.

THE JANUARY WISH

When Dr Sylvia Greene makes an impromptu wish at the Tarrin’s Bay Wishing Festival, it’s the most out of character action she can think of. Hers is not a life of wishes. Hers is a controlled life of order, plans and preparation…of science and research and diagnosis and treatment. But her past has been weighing on her mind, and decisions made long ago have far-reaching consequences.

A week later, the daughter she secretly gave up for adoption at sixteen arrives in Sylvia’s small coastal town with secrets that can’t be shared. Between feelings of guilt, gossip, and a growing attraction to an emotionally unavailable colleague, Sylvia’s well-ordered life is soon thrown into chaos. She is no longer alone, and for the first time she feels as if her world is open to possibilities.

They say be careful what you wish for, but, for Sylvia, the unexpected consequences may be just what the doctor ordered. 

Buy THE JANUARY WISH from all good ebook retailers:

Amazon – Amazon UK – Amazon Aus – iTunes/iBookstore – Kobo – B&N/Nook – GooglePlay – BigW ebooks – Booktopia – JB HiFi – ebooks.com – All Romance ebooks

Visit Juliet online at her website, blog, facebook, Goodreads, and twitter.

Juliet_Madison300dpi  Prize-blogtour

>> WIN! Enter via Rafflecopter below to win a $25 Amazon gift voucher and a coastal photographic print of the setting of The January Wish. Competition is open worldwide and the winner will be drawn at the beginning of February.

Rafflecopter link

Author Limelight: Romantic Comedy author, Samantha Tonge…

Hello and welcome to Author’s limelight,  Samantha Tonge! Congratulations on the recent release of Doubting Abbey.

Hello, Sarah! Thanks for having me!

What was the first story you ever wrote?

Apart from at school, it was my very first attempt at a novel in my twenties, and set in EuroDisney – I had just finished working there. However, I never completed it and didn’t start writing again until my late thirties.

Of all the individuals you have created, do you have a particular favourite? What appeals to you the most about this character?

Phew  – that is a hard question, as I have several novels under the bed, plus have sold over 80 short stories to women’s magazines! But I think Gemma, out of Doubting Abbey, enjoys the qualities I most like my heroines/heroes to have. She is loyal, determined and guileless. Plus has a wicked sense of humour. Gemma would make a great best friend – one you could laugh with and rely on.

Doubting Abbey Xmas Cover

Has being published changed you at all? If so, how?

It has done my OCD no favours, now that I also have Amazon rankings to obsess about! On a serious note, though, after nine years of trying to get a novel deal, I think being published has brought me an inner calm.  Not that I’m complacent but it’s a relief to have finally achieved one of my writing goals.

What would we find on your bookshelf / e-reader?

A selection of chick lit books, of course – plus several from the teen Romance with Bite genre. Also, “How to Write” books and celebrity autobiographies.

What’s the most unappealing thing you’ve ever eaten?

I lived in Paris once and was invited to a family home. They went to a great effort and served oysters, cockles and rare-to-bleeding beef. I was very English about it all and said how wonderful the food was, which led to second serving. I really appreciated their hospitality, but was off work ill for two days afterwards!

If you could be any of the following characters for one day, who would you be and why? How would you re-write the ending?


a) Scarlett O’Hara from Gone with the Wind.

b) Thelma or Louise from Thelma and Louise.

c) Princess Leia from Starwars.

d) Holly Golightly from Breakfast at Tiffanys.

Without a doubt, feisty, wilful, reckless, beautiful, passionate Scarlett O’Hara! I just wish she wasn’t still yearning for Rhett Butler at the end and could accept that, as a couple, they were no good together.

Of all the books in history, which do you wish you wrote and why?

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. How wonderful to have written a book with a plot and characters that still inspired people a century on.

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If you could have a superpower, what would it be and why?

I am obsessed with the vampire genre, so it would have to be the ability to run super-quick, have super-strength and to compel people at my will. Plus to live forever, of course.

If you could go back in time, where would you go and when? What is one thing you would want to take with you?

I would want to go back to my insecure teenage years and take my husband with me. He would have boosted my confidence and been a great confidante.

Can you tell us about your works in progress?

I am considering a REALLY fun and slightly bonkers idea for a sequel for Doubting Abbey! I can’t say anymore though, at the moment, in case I jinx it! (One of my many writerly paranoias!)

Finally, can you give us a sneaky excerpt from (Doubting Abbey), please?

I dodged around to the other side of the trunk. Edward chuckled and looked back to make sure I was following him as he ran. Faster I sprinted, to the left and then to the right, around trees, skirting bushes, jumping over tree roots, praying Edward would stick to the moonlit areas so that I didn’t tumble over a boulder and land in a pile of mud.

I ran into a clearing and stopped still, chest heaving up and down, wishing now that I wasn’t wearing the mega thick, sauna-hot coat. Edward had disappeared. I turned my head. What a giveaway! Someone sneezed from the left. I tiptoed across a grassy area and peered over a large bush.

‘This is too easy. Tig!’ I said and ruffled his hair.

He roared and with a scream I ran back the way I’d come. Laughing, I could hardly breathe and lost my way. Where on earth was I now? Heading for the broken fencing or toward the cemetery at the front? I lay flat on the ground behind some tall grass.

‘Aarggh!’ I screamed as someone grabbed me, under the arms. I turned and glared at Edward. ‘You scared me!’ I shouted and jumped up.

‘Your… face,’ he stuttered and wiped away tears from his eyes.

I giggled. ‘Beautiful as ever, I hope, even if mega surprised.’

He stopped laughing and stared at me, his familiar serious expression back in place. ‘Yes. Yes, it is.’

Before I knew it…”

I’ll leave any blogvisitors to guess what happens next!

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