Thursday, December 1, 2016

Dependent Re-release

New cover! Design by Streetlight Graphics.



Dependent's second edition is now ready for pre-order and will be available December 9th! 

It's been a few complicated months of rights discussions, editing, cover art and formatting work, but the Fortunate Frog Fiction edition of Dependent is ready to go and will release next week. This story is darker than my YA writing, and deals with some heavy issues. Sexual assault in the military setting, the culture of rank, deployments, moving...many of the things our military spouses deal with every day. 

If you haven't read it yet, please consider it for your reading list. There will be a Goodreads giveaway posted here next week and you could win one of two copies of the new edition. I'm also part of small blog tour to celebrate the re-release.

If you have read it, please share your thoughts in a review (Amazon and Goodreads are very easy platforms...), and don't forget to share with your friends!

Thank you to all who have supported me through this transition. 

Brenda

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Dependent update

A few weeks ago you may have seen that Dependent's original publisher, Jolly Fish Press, was closing its doors.


They later followed up by an announcement, stating that they weren't really closing, but instead were being purchased by North Star Editions. 



As can be imagined, it was a relatively turbulent time for other JFP authors, as information was limited, and their writing dreams were pinned on some shaky ground. I'm happy for those who stayed the course and have moved with JFP to the new publisher, but many of my writing friends had their rights reverted, and are moving on either by seeking a new publisher for their stories, or by self publishing. 

I was one of the lucky ones, as I had already moved on, receiving my rights back in the spring. Dependent is no longer available as a JFP title. As I began the process of publishing Dependent under my teeny-tiny press, Fortunate Frog Fiction, I was saddened to see others dealing with the same issues, only not by choice. As their new editions become available over the next few months, I'll be promoting them whole-heartedly here on the blog and on my other social media channels!

Regardless, the time has come to announce that Dependent will be re-released BEFORE CHRISTMAS. 

I'm in the process of finalizing the cover and formatting, and hope to be ready to upload as early as next week!

I will be revealing my cover in the next week or so, so stay tuned. Things are moving fast! 

If you haven't read Dependent, please consider purchasing the new edition, either in ebook or paperback format. It brings up some very real issues.

Now, more than ever.

Women should not have to fear men in power. 

Brenda

Monday, October 31, 2016

NaNoWriMo Take Five (?)

All decked out, and no
place to go
Happy Halloween! 


Hope you are ready for the influx of ghosties and superheroes and Harry Potter lookalikes! :) I'm going through a bit of nostalgia as this will be the first Halloween we have spent without a full cadre of dressed-up Dunnes. With my eldest away at university and my other two teens in a new city with busy lives, I'm not sure any of them of will dress up.  The witches brew and mummy dogs will still be cooking up in the kitchen, and I'll be wearing my favourite purple and black striped tights.

So. October 31st also means preparation for one of the busiest months of my year... November. Remembrance Day. Diabetes Awareness Month (one of my teens is a juvenile (Type 1) diabetic). Christmas preparations. American Thanksgiving. And--when I'm feeling particularly crazy--National Novel Writing Month.

And this month I'm feeling particularly crazy.

The truth of the matter is, with all that's been going on, I'm in a bit of a writing rut. Not blocked (I'm not a believer in writer's block), but significantly decelerated. My mojo needs some gojo. There is nothing better than a month designated to not just pick away at, but to FINISH a project when you're an author. A suspended inner editor and a permission slip to let the laundry pile up...with several hundred other crazy nut-bars write (miss-spell intended) there along with you.

My first NaNo project!
If you've followed me since the beginning, you'll know that Treasure in the Flame started out as a NaNo project in 2010.

In 2011, a little idea I'd titled Red Sand Selkie battled it's way through to becoming SKIN.

2012 was Dependent's year.

2013 I worked on Off Grid (currently under sub).


In fact, just about every year since I found NaNo, I've used November as a month to do something with my writing.

This year for NaNo I'm HOPING to barrel through and finish at least one of the sequels I've got on my laptop... And I'm starting with the much requested sequel to SKIN, tentatively titled SWIM.

 Ocean and Sam are in trouble. Deeeeeeep trouble. And I have to get them out of a very nasty mess. I'm about 25k words in, making it a perfect 50k+ word winning NaNo project.

And that's the great thing about NaNoWriMo. You can't really 'lose'. Any words down at this point will be winning words. And in the end, you get a sequel. Wish me luck!

And now, back to my regularly scheduled Halloween candy pilfering... ;)


Brenda


*Nano Image Courtesy of National Novel Writing Month



Sunday, October 9, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving




Happy Canadian Thanksgiving! 


What am I thankful for? A whole day to spend with the people I love...My husband has the day off, my eldest is home for the weekend from her university, my two live-at-home teens have no activities, and the fridge is full to the brim of goodies for us to eat (although I had a bit of a time trying to find a turkey in the US in October...). My cup continually runs over, and I am so blessed to have all of the opportunities I do. 

To celebrate all of this largess, and as a toke of my gratitude to you, my readers, I've lowered the price of both SKIN and TREASURE IN THE FLAME Kindle ebooks for a whole week! Just $2.99! This week is also #TeenReadsWeek, and yesterday was #IndieAuthorDay, so what better time to have a sale on my indie YA's? If you haven't read them, now is your chance.

If you are in the US, click here. In Canada? Try here. Elsewhere in the world? Check out your local Amazon. :) 

Hope you all have a good book to read, a comfy couch to snuggle into and a thankful heart today. 

With love,

Brenda

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

From Here (Part two)



This time of year two years ago, I was in a new place with boxes all around me, squishing a big house's contents into a much smaller military residence, and trying to support my kids as they started new schools.

Only the schools didn't open, and the kids didn't start.

Grown adults were unable to sit in a room and compromise, and their employees and their students suffered for it. I was FED UP, and I wrote this blog, stating how important that first day of school was to our military kids.

And then someone commented on said blog, implying that because I wasn't FROM HERE I didn't get an opinion.

OH. EM. GEE.

Seriously.

If you follow my blogs, you'll know I LOST IT.  What the frigging heck? Not FROM HERE? No, I'm not FROM HERE. I went against my usual rule of DO NOT ENGAGE, and responded to said comment. Nicely, of course...I AM Canadian and all. I posted my muted outrage on Facebook, and had a tremendous outpouring of support from friends and readers alike, and then posted another blog response here.




Anyway, why I've brought this moment in my blog history to the table today is that --guess what?-- my family is now in a different house, with kids in a different school (which, thank heavens, started on time), and we are all experiencing the NOT FROM HERE in a whole different way, because we actually AREN'T.  Considering several of us were born here, and we've vacationed here, lived here, worked here and played here before...it should be pretty easy to transition. But the questions outlined on my first blog are the same...only multiplied now that the kids are teens: 

"Will I like my teacher? Will I be able to play the trombone in band? Will I make the soccer team? Will I be behind or ahead in Math? Will I have too much homework? Will the kids on the bus be mean or nice? Will they tease me because I'm new? Did I get the course selections I asked for? Will I have enough time to get between classes? Are there good books in the library? 

And the most important question for kids... Will I meet a new best friend?"

Add new things like the fact that this time we are living in a city (our first in ten years), one of us is missing (off to university), American high school culture (holy cow, different), a completely new curriculum (yes, the Math is VERY different), and different brands at the grocery store (no Kinder eggs here, folks...but there's WINE) it's been an eye opener. 


The good thing about this posting, though, is that it's ABOUT not being FROM HERE. We're here because we are different. We are here to learn and to share and to expand ourselves. And other than some, um...interesting political postulating (oh, boy), it's GOOD that we are here. It's exciting. It's scary. It's educational and enriching.



And we are not alone. America, like Canada, is a country of others. Especially here, in the capital region, there are many, many people not FROM HERE. 

There have already been hiccups, and we've already changed (my laid back Canadian driving skills have had to go--it's every driver for themselves on these roads), but I hope the end result will be positive. Especially once those boxes are all empty.

We'll see. I'll keep you posted.


Brenda





Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Changes




Ah, the first week of September.

Kids are back to school, days are getting shorter, and yes, that wonderful concoction we call the Pumpkin Spice Latte has made it's reappearance at Starbucks.

Oh, yeah....
After an amazing (and exhausting) few months of fun and excitement, it's time for moms (and dads) everywhere to sit down, grab their PSL, reflect on their summer bucket lists, reorganize their lives and get back to a routine. You know it's been a particularly good summer if that routine is happily anticipated and that first PSL comes with a sense of profound relief.

Ahhhhh.

For me, the relief is particularly intense, as the past few months have brought one heck of a lot of changes. If you've been following me on my social media, you'll have seen the occasional post indicating things were in flux, but sitting here thinking about the scope of change this summer has seen is rather mind boggling.

Here's a short list of what's gone on just since June...
New book-baby

* said goodbye to not one, but TWO beloved day-job workplaces (both of which paid well and had amazing coworkers),

* had the rights for Dependent revert back to me from Jolly Fish Press (more on this later),

* published my new book, Skin,

* watched my firstborn graduate from high school,

* went on a house hunting trip for next posting,

* hubby left for an out-of-country post for five weeks,
Looking lovely in the shark cage

* visited Hawaii and SWAM WITH SHARKS,

* packed our household into a moving truck,

* drove almost 5000km (3000) miles, across an entire continent (1 province and 16 states) over 10 days on the Great American Road Trip from the Pacific Coast in Canada to the Atlantic Coast in America,

* watched our moving truck fill our new, empty house with piles of boxes and junk (sigh),

* drove an additional 4 states and 1 province to drop my firstborn for her first year of university (sniff, sniff!) and returned, (Making a grand total of TWENTY STATES AND TWO PROVINCES this summer!!)

* began current existence in the Washington, DC area which mostly consists of trying to find the bottom of the boxes and figuring out how to transfer my physical therapy license while driving kidlets places and trying not to get frustrated at each small item that comes out of a box bent, dented or broken.

As mentioned a few months ago here, we military families deal with many of life's major stressors on a regular basis. It's part of the job description.  But wow, it's been a busy summer, and yes, that PSL is tasting mighty good right now.

So. Details.

Me...and Old Faithful
Some Presidents and some Dunnes










Re: Moving...

America is huge. Not as big as Canada, but still...huge. And driving across it is an amazing adventure. There is so much to see, and then so many miles of vast nothingness. It was quite a trip. I've attached a couple of my favourite pictures...but nothing can capture the feeling of driving in the centre of a continent with absolutely no lights but your headlights and the stars for miles and miles. It was quite a trip.

Unfortunately the downside of the adventure are the struggles of setting up shop in a brand new place. I find pulling my third very squished seasonal wreath out of a box frustrating. Or the curtain rods with their finials lost or broken off. Or the lamp that came in one box on the second floor of the house, with the shade in a box in the basement of the house...and the harp/shade attachment is still nowhere to be seen... sigh. Luckily we've found this move to be a bit easier (although it's never easy) as our children are older and huge helpers. And, as compensation, the DC area is filled to the brim with museums, cultural events and things to see. I think we'll like it here.


Re: SKIN

I am so pleased with this wonderful little book. My launch was so much fun and I've seen some top 30 moments on Amazon. If you haven't bought it yet, what are you waiting for? :) And don't forget to review!


Re: DEPENDENT

As mentioned above, Dependent is no longer being published by Jolly Fish Press. There are many reasons for this, but after much deep and soul-searching thought I asked for, and received, my legal rights back this past spring. If you have tried to buy an e-copy lately, you should have found that it was out of print, although there are still some paper copies for sale in various places. I am not sure, at this point, where I will go from here. The rights are available, if a publisher expresses interest. I may also publish a new edition via Fortunate Frog Fiction. Decisions to be deferred for a later date.


What's next?

I love fall. I love almost every part of it...the leaves, the smells, the re-established routines, the quiet in the house...

Other than continuing to unpack, I hope to find some well-earned time at my keyboard over the next couple of weeks. I have three manuscripts on the go, all of which could be finished in a month or so with dedicated time on my laptop. SKIN has a sequel in the works, as does TREASURE (slow going, but still plodding away) and a new contemporary YA as well. On top of that, I hope to give my social media presence some love, and tidy up my blog.

Lastly...

I just wanted to say thank you. If you are reading this, you are supporting my passion. You are supporting indie authors, and you have been an important part of my success to date. Thank you so very much for reading, sharing, buying and reviewing my books. I couldn't do it without you. You rock.




Brenda








Thursday, July 28, 2016

SALE!!

Sea turtles! On the northern shore of Oahu!


Those sharks are right under my feet!
Wow! Summer is flying by! My Goodreads Giveaway was a huge success, with winners from Louisiana, Saskatchewan and Quebec! Congrats to the three lucky winners!

So I've just spent two weeks on an entirely different island... Oahu! And it was AY-MAY-ZING!

Not only did I get to spend two weeks in a tropical paradise with four of my favourite people in the world, but I also had the privilege of being a military spouse during RIMPAC 2016, met some wonderful military folk from all over the world and...

I SWAM WITH SHARKS!

Looking HOT in my snorkel gear.
I know. Insane. Waaaay out of my comfort zone. Like, in a different galaxy. At one point, I counted twelve sharks swimming beyond the bars of our very flimsy cage. It was AWESOME.

Look at me at the helm!
 I also got to stand at the helm of a HUGE aircraft carrier-- The USS John C Stennis, had Brie (My FAVORITE) on the deck of a French war ship, and kimchi on a Korean ship while watching a very interesting rendition of Gagnam Style. So many adventures! It was a great trip.

But now, because my giveaway was such a success (thank you to all who participated!), and it's the long August weekend (yay!), and we're moving in less than two weeks to the other side of the continent (gah!)...SKIN IS ON SALE!

That's right!


From now until August 2nd you can get SKIN's Kindle edition for a mere $2.99! 


That's less than the price of a latte! So what are you waiting for? :)

If you live in the US... go HERE!

Canadian? Go HERE!

And when you're done, don't forget to review!

Have a super weekend!!

Brenda