Friday, January 22, 2016

Surfaced Cover Reveal!

Youpeeee!  I happy to share with you all the gorgeous cover created by Contagious Covers for the third adventure in the Clockwork Siren Series, Surfaced.  Release date, Feb. 16th.  (If you are part of  my newsletter recipients I will let you in on a secret pre-release date low price!)

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Keeping Calm. Kind of.

Yesterday I received a message asking when the third adventure in the Clockwork Siren Series would be out. I blinked at the words a few times before answering because I was so touched that someone out there was actually waiting for the book!  I often have the feeling that what I write goes out into a black hole or some soul-sucking void. How awesome to have the confirmation that there are real people reading (and even liking) my stories!

So in case there was one (or two) more of you wondering about the next release, I thought I'd let you know what the heck is going on here.

I'm feeling like I need to carry around a paper bag to breathe in these days. In typical me fashion, I am trying to do way too many things at once. My desktop looks like a hurricane blew through. The laundry is literally piled up to shoulder height. My kids have been complaining about how much I am on the computer and my cats giving me the stink-eye because I haven't gone out to get them their special treats.  I can't catch my breath.  I keep sucking in, feeling my lungs fill.  But I can't seem to exhale.

And yet I am not ready to give up on getting it all done.  I will make it happen.

I had said I would get Surfaced, the third adventure in the Clockwork Siren Series, out by mid-January.  Ummmm.  Yeah.  Well, it will be coming out February 16th instead. I am going to have to go underground for the next week or so to get all the details and editing taken care of before February 1st, when I am offering ARCs to those who are willing to review by release day.

I'm ticked at myself for being a month behind, but I do have to say it is with good reason.  I have been busting my butt to set up the 10th Geneva Writers' Conference. This conference is probably one of the warmest, most supportive that writers can find in Europe. Like everyone on the conference committee, I have been volunteering my time (and questioning my sanity) to make this happen. As co-director, I am in charge of the program, and that includes setting it up for registration.  This is the first time we have decided to put it all online and it has been a huge transition. With lots of swearing. And whining.  And maybe even a few tears. Okay. Maybe a lot of tears. You can see the conference program HERE.

Add in that the kids were off of school for more than two weeks.  That I was sick with some throat/head/stomach thing.  That I am seriously unorganized and waste a lot of time writing scenes that will never actually get on the page...add all that and you have one off-kilter schedule.

But I will make it to the finish line having done everything that needs doing.  Because I know at least one person is waiting for my book to be released...and a couple hundred are waiting to attend a conference I'm in charge of.  I may gasp and wheeze to get there, but I have no doubt I will make it in the end.

And then I'll go back to spending more time with the kids, spoiling my cats and (maybe) doing some housework... that is, until I decide to take on too much once again.

Monday, December 21, 2015

Happy Holidays

Hope you all finish off 2015 with a bang and that 2016 brings you happiness!

Monday, December 7, 2015

Today's Tidbit

So, I have been spending way to much time doing research on what is essentially a fantasy series.  But, hey, for steampunk to feel real to me, there has to be a bit of Victorian accuracy!  I've scoured websites, read books like How to be a Victorian by Ruth Goodman, and visited dusty museums. Plus, researching Victorian swear words or hairstyles or gentleman's clubs is a great procrastination tool.  Knowing things can never hurt.

And so I bring you a bit of fun: some popular terms from the 19th century that I think should be re-instated.  Most of these tidbits today come from Marc McCutcheon's Everyday Life in the 1800s, but a couple were things picked up on the web.

Boodle, meaning a crowd.  How fun is that to say?  Try it five times fast.

Blazes, taking the place of "hell" or "the devil".  I am the youngest of six kids, and was unplanned. My parents are up there in age.  My father, at 93 now, has been heard to say, What in the blazes is wrong with you?  He also uses other terms for the devil that ticked on over from Victorian times, like Sam Hill, dickens, thunder and the expression Dad blame it!.

Crinkum-Crankum, female genitals. I think I'm going to start using this with my kids (instead of the French slang, zizi).  I hate bicycle seats. My crinkum-crankum is killing me.

Fix one's flint, to settle something.  I'll fix his flint, and good.

Pucker, to be annoyed or upset.  I love this one because you can see it.  Old Mrs. Meanie was in a right pucker that we'd trampled her grass.

Sauce Box, meaning your mouth. Shut your sauce box, would you?

Skeery, to be afraid or apprehensive.  Another one that's just fun to say, probably a mutation of scary.   It's getting dark outside and I'm feeling kind of skeery.


Thursday, November 19, 2015

Ain't That the Truth?

Photo: Elaine Vigneault

“People say that life is the thing,
but I prefer reading.”  
― Logan Pearsall Smith

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Because it's Beautiful

Fall is my favorite season, mainly because I adore wearing fashion boots and have a fall coat fetish. There are other reasons, of course (razor hiatus anyone?), but after the love of boots comes basking in the flat-out beauty of the season.  I hope you all are having as gorgeous an autumn as I am. 

Monday, November 2, 2015

Enter to Win a Kindle Fire and Other Prizes! Daughters of Men Blog Tour by A.R. Draeger

DaughtersofMen Daughters of Men by A.R. Draeger published April 5, 2015
Devastated by the loss of her son, Rebecca is struggling to salvage her marriage to Jacob, a cold and detached pastor. When he goes on a men's hunting retreat and does not return on time, Rebecca fears the worst. Jacob arrives three days late, citing bad weather and poor cell service as the reasons none of the men called home. Jacob appears healthy, but Rebecca is concerned with the deep gashes on his arms and is even more alarmed when he tells her that he stitched them himself. As the weeks pass, Rebecca begins to wonder what happened in the mountains. Jacob is not the same man he was before. While she is relieved he is no longer detached, she cannot comprehend why he’s become so flirtatious, so sexually aggressive. So obsessive. Jacob's odd behavior mounts, and the actions of the men who joined Jacob on the retreat grow more and more strange, convincing Rebecca that the men who came home are not the men who left. Who are these pretenders… and what have they done with her husband?


A.R. (Amber) Draeger resides in rural Texas with her husband, Josh, and son, Logan. When not writing or reading, she is watching reality TV shows or tromping through the nearby woods. Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads       Sad woman in a forest. Loneliness and melancholy concept giveaway
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