Ridener’s Reviews: Paranormal Heat by G. Mallone

So first and foremost I have to send out an apology to G. Mallone.  Apparently Amazon won’t let me leave a review because they say we’re friends.  Stalker much? And why can’t I leave a review?  I leave reviews for everybody! GRRRR.

Anyway, so I had the pleasure of reading Paranormal Heat: A Collection of Erotic Short Stories.  I normally do not read erotica, but G’s is just so beautifully written and it touches your heart.  Yes, it’s spicy and sexy, but it’s also sweet and romantic.  I really, really enjoyed each story.

5 out of 5 stars

Buy it HERE.

Synopsis:

This book of short stories is perfect for readers on-the-go. Varying from 8 to 15,000 words, Paranormal Heat contains three spicy stories with a paranormal twist. For readers 18+ due to graphic sexual content and strong language. NSFW.

MADNESS- Vincent finds himself in the same room as his beautiful wife and the handsome shifter he’s been having an affair with on the side one night. Will catastrophe follow or is there something more?

COUGAR’S HEAT- Beckham Marlow returns home for summer break from college and runs into his old babysitter. Allie Buchanan, recently widowed and harboring a secret, may make their reunion a little friendlier than originally anticipated. Cougars can be fun and somewhat naughty, but what happens when Beckham discovers Allie is the real deal?

CHAPTER FORTY-TWO- A twenty-something author decides he needs a change and moves halfway across the country in hopes of overcoming his writer’s block so he can finish the ultimate fantasy romance novel. Instead he inherits a pretty little blonde ghost who can’t seem to keep her hands off him. Most ghosts have an appetite for mischief, but Keegan Taylor’s ghost girl is hungry for him.

———

Three very delightful, sexy stories.  I loved the characters and while the stories are short I swear they were better than most full length novels I have read.  The only complaint I have is I REALLY want to know what happens between Beckham and Allie.  PLEASE say you’re writing a follow-up for them, G!

OH, and another favorite part? There’s also some M/M and something about the fact the scenes were written by a man made it 10000x hotter in my mind.  I’d love to see more of that, but that’s probably just a personal preference.

Keep writing, G.  I can’t wait to read more!

An Open Letter to Indie Authors

Dear Author,

I do not view you as my competition.  You are not a rival I need to beat.  I consider you to be my friend and I cheer you on every time I see your updates about a new book.

I will not be mean to you.  I will not try to thwart your success.  Sure, we all get a little green with envy when someone hits a list or gets an amazing review, but I will always cheer you on and be happy for you.  That happiness will always be genuine.

I know it is frustrating when you hit that dreaded creative wall.  You feel alone–you are not.  We all get to that point at one time or another, but please know I am always willing to help in any way I can.

I know it’s scary to take the leap into publishing, no matter if it’s self or traditional, please know I’m only a message away to cheer you on and answer questions to the best of my ability.

Sometimes we doubt ourselves and that’s okay.  It comes with the territory.  If you need a cheerleader, message me.

Getting noticed takes time.  Growing a fan base takes time.  Don’t be afraid to reach out to me if you need something shared.  I don’t have a big fan base myself, but I’m willing to share that cover reveal or sale for you.

We’re not all ‘mean girls’ and this business doesn’t have to be cut throat.  Believe me when I say there are more readers than authors and we can all have a piece of the pie.

I wish you nothing but success.  I have faith in you.  I believe in you.  I’m here for you.

YES, you CAN write that book.  Don’t ever give up.

Keep writing and reach for the stars.

Your friend,

An Author Who Dares to Dream

I’m stuck.

Ugh.

Ugh.

How many times have we been here in the last year?  Too many to count honestly.  I hate when it happens, but alas…

I haven’t written ‘THE END‘ on anything since September.  Do you realize how horrible that is?  How terrible?  How…it’s-the-end-of-the-world that is?  Do you?

I have at least 5 different projects I could open right now and write on, heh, if I were actually capable of writing.   I’m stuck. I’m lost.  I can’t move forward and IT SUCKS.

Brody Go Back, that awesome time-travel m/m romance I was writing? PFFFT. I’ve been stuck at the 60% mark for months.

The Ice King’s Heart, the final book of the Descendants Series?  Been at the 80% mark for over a YEAR.

Blood Resurrection, the final book in the Blood Betrayal Series?  Don’t. Go. There.

I even have a piece for an anthology that’s about 60% complete and I just know they’re going to kick me out.

It’s disheartening. It’s maddening.

“Oh, but Tonya, why don’t you just take a break? Maybe your brain needs to rest.”  –No. My brain has been resting for the last 6 months.  I need it to work.

“Oh, but Tonya.  Maybe you should start something new and see what happens?”  –HAHAHAHAHAHA.  Do you even know how many projects I already have?  Starting something else, right now, and getting halfway through it only to hit a wall will probably make me bash my face against said wall.

I’m frustrated.  I’m angry with myself for not being able to complete anything.  My readers are being patient…but how much longer will they wait?

How much longer will -I- wait?  It has gotten the point in the last few weeks that I kind of want to give up writing altogether.  I’m seriously discouraged over this.  I don’t know if it’s because I know writing on certain books means goodbye for those characters or what, but I just can’t seem to move forward.

It’s stressing me out and making writing ‘not so fun’.  I don’t want that.

I just want my brain to work again.  I need the characters to cooperate.

Ugh. -mutter mutter-

This has been a rant.  Sorry. <3

Everybody starts somewhere.

I know what you’re thinking.

“What on earth did we do to deserve two blog posts in one week?”

Okay, so that’s not what you’re really thinking, but I’m giving you another blog post anyway.

I remember a time when I was just sitting in my bedroom, browsing the inter webs and suddenly stumbling across a website about self-publishing.  I was so excited when I realized someone would give me the opportunity to share my work with the world and maybe make a little money while doing so. (It’s NOT about the money for me, but this IS my career.  The income is nice. <3)

During the first couple of years after publishing my first books I realized I had no idea how to network or who to connect with.  I was seriously blessed when a reader contacted me and began putting me in touch with other authors and readers.  It’s literally been a roller coaster since that fateful conversation took place. <3 Thank you, Mrs. Freese.  You’re amazing. ;)

I see a lot of indie authors who have been around for a long time, but they haven’t reached over 100 likes on their page.  It makes me wonder if they are too shy to contact others, or just don’t know how.

Thus, bringing us to the reason for this blog post tonight.

We all started somewhere, didn’t we?  Some of us aren’t as fortunate as others to have contacts at the ready.  There are those of us who don’t have a steady following when we dive into the author world, and it can feel a little lonely.  It can feel a little discouraging.

If you’re an author and you’re reading this blog post, let me ask you something.

When’s the last time you randomly shared a lesser-known indie’s page, or a link from their page, just because?

I’m not saying you /have/ to share every single Dick and Jane’s page with your readers, but if you happen to stumble across a new author’s page and something on there piques your interest, why not?

A lot of people have this ‘it’s every man for himself’ attitude when it comes to the indie community, but I don’t believe that for a second.  There are way more readers in the world than authors.  They are always looking for new books to read, new worlds to get lost in.  Help them do that by suggesting someone new every once in a while.

Bloggers–same to you.  If you come across a lesser-known indie and one of their teasers makes your heart race, share it with your fans!

Heaven knows I would have appreciated that little gesture when I was just starting out.

There was so much more I planned to say, but this blasted headache won’t let up.

“Be careful who you step on on your way up the ladder of success.  You’ll have to see them again on your way down.”

I felt like something was missing…

So I was just typing away on one of my WIPs and it randomly hits me that I haven’t made a blog post in a few weeks. OOPS.  My bad.

I’m an author–you can’t hold it against me.  We forget stuff all the time.

Anyway, so I’ve been pretty busy with a new project I’m doing alongside my BAFF (best author friend forever), the lovely, amazing, wonderful ELLE VANZANDT.

What is that, you ask?  Oh, you know, we started a radio show.

The Author Wave is going to be a fun, relaxing podcast where we talk about books, authors, and interview said authors from time to time.  We want this to be an opportunity for people to talk about their books, their writing process, random shenanigans, and interact with their readers.

That’s right.  You can call in and talk to your favorite author!

If you’d like to schedule an interview, you can sign up HERE.   We will be scheduling interviews up to six months in advance.

Or, if you’d like to have your book promoted, you can check out our packages HERE.

And if ya just can’t wait for our next show, you can listen to our most recent one HERE.

We will have our first guest author on the show March 3rd at 1PM EST.  Who is it?

The one and only K WEBSTER!  We hope you’ll join us.

In the meantime I have to get back to some Icers and Warmers in this WIP of mine I’ve been working on for over a year and a half.  ;)  Hopefully I don’t forget to update again soon. xx

The honest truth about what drives me crazy.

I honestly couldn’t think of a better title for this blog post, so I’m just putting it as bluntly as I know how.

This post is talking about what drives me crazy, bonkers, absolutely mad.

It’s not the actual writing process.  It isn’t even editing (which will do a number on anybody.)

Actually….

It’s having so many voices in my head and all of them trying to talk at once.

I can go weeks, or months, without my characters saying a word.  And then one day they all decide to chime in.

“ME FIRST!”

“NO! ME ME ME!”

“I GOT HERE BEFORE YOU.”

“SHUT UP. IT’S MY TURN.”

“BUT MY BOOK IS ALMOST FINISHED. GO AWAY.”

“BACK OF THE LINE, YOU IDIOT.”

“SHE LOVES ME MOST!”

Yeah….this is my life.  It happens about three times a year and this is one of those times.

Yes. It makes me feel crazy.

People ask me all the time when my next book is coming out and that’s never an easy answer.  I really do try to work on this or that, but then something else comes along and absolutely will not shut up until I open a word document to write what they want to say.

Sometimes it leads to a dead end, but sometimes it spawns an entirely new novel that I just have to finish…..because they demand it.

I’m the type of writer who has to work on multiple projects at once.  If I get stuck on one thing, I’ll always have something else to bounce to.  This helps me evade writer’s block, but it doesn’t always work. >.<

Because then I have fifty people coming at me at once…wanting me to write about them.

Like now.

Sure, I’d love to finish up the Kadenburg Series, or finish my last vampire novel so the world can have it….but it’s really not that easy.  Not for me.  I don’t think I’m alone in that either.

I just have to wait patiently for one voice to become distinctive.  One storyline to rule them all. But until that happens I’ll continue bouncing back and forth in a pinball machine of characters and their endless possibilities.

They’re demanding little buggers.

When will my next book be out?

Ridener Reviews: Resilient Heart by Annabeth Albert

5 out of 5 stars.

Get your copy HERE

Once again I made the mistake of reading Annabeth’s work as something to fall asleep to. I don’t do it because I think it’ll bore me, I do it because her writing relaxes me..but the issue is I can’t stop reading until I reach THE END. Her work is that addictive for me. She won me over with Winning Bracket and I seriously enjoyed Resilient Heart. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, this woman’s writing is poetic. Her words just flow together and she has a way with wording things.

She’ll make you blush. She’ll make you laugh. She’ll make you feel butterflies. I believe she’s a very interactive author when she tells stories. She gets you involved in the book. I enjoyed Xander and Mackey, best-friends-with-benefits turned so much more.

I won’t give away the story, but it basically involves a man who’s been broken in more ways than one. He feels guilty and angry. His best friend, Mackey, feels guilty, too, but not for the reasons Xander thinks.

As someone who has known people suffering from physical and mental wounds from war, I appreciated this love story. I wish every soldier who came back had someone who loved them as much as Mackey loves Xander. It’s a truly touching tale and I’d recommend it to others.

I’m not going to dock stars off this because I adore this author’s work and it’s a darn good book, but one thing I did notice is a very common theme of moms (which maybe she just loves her mom and loves having gay men who have supportive moms). I just felt a lot of similarities of these characters with Edwin and Ollie from Winning Bracket. Like..you could take those two and place them in the military and tada! But it was still an amazing story and I really, really enjoyed it a lot. Annabeth has true talent and she’s going to go far. Keep writing magical stories!

Oh, and I feel it’s amusing and important to make note that when I read a particular part about how Xander is capable of making Mackey crumble–I was listening to All of Me and it said “You’re my downfall” at the very same time. Just funny. I’m going to shut up now.