Monday, January 15, 2018

EXOSOLAR: A SCI-FI SURVIVAL STORY FROM GARRICK DAVIS


Genre: Science Fiction/Fantasy 
Author: Garrick Davis 
Where to read: 
or 


Synopsis 
On Day One, Eva was crawling through the ruins of a crashed starship, countless light years away from safety. On Day One Hundred, she was running through the jungles of a hostile planet, the demons of her past biting at her heels. They would not stop until she was dead, and she would not stop until she reached Earth.

The Age of Man has ended. Desolate planets and shattered starships fill the void of space, and the wrathful manhunters have conquered the cosmos.

Humans, who had once ruled the stars, are mere prey to these immortal aliens. They patrol the galaxies in massive ships, mercilessly killing every human they find.
Survivors like Eva must traverse through the shadows of space, for they are constantly being hunted by the enemy. Earth, the only planet the manhunters have been unable to destroy, is their only hope for survival.

Exosolar is a sci-fi Survival story that chronicles the journey of Eva, one of the last humans left alive. With danger lurking on every planet, she must find her way back to Earth, and defeat the demons that seek to destroy her. 


 Special Excerpt from 
Chapter One: Ours is the Fire 
(Visit the links above to read the entire story)      
Eva’s desperation had led her to Eridere Seven, the most treacherous planet in the Vedoran System.
In Eridere’s vast jungles, death could come to her in a variety of ways. If her exosuit malfunctioned, the planet’s toxic gases would kill her in less than a minute. If her plasma pistol lost its charge, the nightmarish beasts lurking in the shadows would soak the leaves with her blood.
Eva knew the risks. She came to the primitive planet expecting to die. Her demise was inevitable. Eridere Seven was the only place in the entire solar system that would grant her a quick death.
For her, being killed by a pack of feral beasts was far more favorable than what the manhunters had in store for her. If they caught her, she’d lose all hope for a swift end. They would torture her until the pain drove her to insanity, then, when she could no longer scream for mercy, they’d feast on her flesh.
Eva shuddered at the thought.
She crept silently through the dense jungle, her pistol held at the ready. Dark, towering trees surrounded her. Leaves as red as blood formed a thick canopy overhead. Wisps of toxic fog weaved through the underbrush. The shrill shrieks of unseen creatures echoed through the dry air.
She kept a watchful eye on the twin suns. They had risen far above the golden clouds, and were setting the sky ablaze with crimson light. She would need to head back at dusk. She had already wandered several miles away from the gulch where her spaceship, the White Lotus, was located. With luck she could reach the ship, depart from the planet, and slip into a wormhole long before Eridere fell dark.
She continued to venture through the jungle. Her slender exosuit, its metal plates colored a bright cobalt, brushed against the thick vegetation. Tall plants rose like spires amongst the trees. Eva avoided them at all costs. They were as poisonous, and deadly, as the toxic air itself.
Multiple warnings flashed across her helmet’s Heads Up Display. They warned her of rising toxicity levels, radiation, and of her suit’s depleting oxygen tanks. She ignored them all.
She was traveling to the heart of the jungle, where the herbivores were gathering. She hoped to spend most of the day hunting. The docile creatures would be easy prey. After she had finished hunting, she would then begin digging for precious minerals. Eridere’s soil was rich in falsidium; a material she could use to fuel both her exosuit and her ship.
After landing on the planet at dawn, Eva had left the White Lotus hidden in a desolate gulch on the outskirts of the jungle. She activated the ship’s reflective stealth panels, rendering it invisible to the naked eye. It was an attempt to hide theLotus from unseen assailants.
At the top of Eva’s HUD was a navpoint; a blue arrow leading to a specific geographical location. She had created it hours earlier. It would help her find her way back to the White Lotus.
She had spent much of the morning wandering through the jungle. The only weapon she possessed was her plasma pistol, though it was decades old and malfunctioning. It had failed to fire several times before, making it both unpredictable and unreliable.
To the west, a tropic storm ravaged the mountains. An endless downpour of acid rain tore the jungle asunder. Plumes of toxic gas spread through the air like a cancer. The storm had raged on for hours, and would not stop until the entire region was as black as death.
Eva kept to the east, where nature was more forgiving. She stalked through the underbrush, searching for easy prey. She had encountered many herbivores over the past few days; lumbering giants that moved like snails. With one clean shot from her pistol, she’d have enough meat to last for a week.
But she needed to be careful. She wasn’t the only predator on the hunt. Winged creatures constantly patrolled the skies. Claw prints left behind by monstrous beasts covered the ground. She knew they were watching her from the shadows, awaiting the perfect moment to strike.
Eva kept her pistol raised. Let them come. She would be ready.


About the Author 
I was born in Lynchburg, Virginia in 1994. I always loved creating stories and developing exciting characters. I moved to Texas in 2015 and began writing Exosolar. I finished the novel in 2017, and the sequel is already in the works. I am a lover of all things Fantasy, Sci-Fi, and Superhero -related!







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Monday, January 8, 2018

THE CULLING TRILOGY: YOUNG ADULT DYSTOPIAN ADVENTURE FROM RAMONA FINN

Title: The Culling 
Author: Ramona Finn 
Genre: YA/Dystopia 
Release: Get it HERE!

Synopsis

In a solar system where The Authority decides who lives and who dies, only one of their own assassins can stop them.


Glade Io is a trained killer. Marked at a young age as an individual with violent tendencies, she was taken from her family and groomed to be a Datapoint, a biotech-enabled analyst who carries out the Culling. She is meant to identify and destroy any potential threats to the human colonies. But when she’s kidnapped by rogue colonists known as the Ferrymen, everything Glade thinks she knows about the colonies, and The Authority that runs them, collapses into doubt.

As the Culling begins, Glade is pulled between two opposing sides, and with her family’s lives hanging in the balance, Glade is unsure of who to trust—and time is quickly running out.


Thanks to the author for sharing a special excerpt from

 The Culling, Book One

here on Writing Belle today! Enjoy! 

I awoke at the bottom of a pit of water. And with about three seconds worth of oxygen left in my lungs.
My long hair tangled in my fingers as my panicked brain searched for a way out. My hands hit nothing, and my eyes were wide and saw only black. I was completely submerged and had no way of knowing which way was up. If there even was an up.
My body rolled in the dark as my lungs screamed. I was going to drown. I was going to drown in the dark and quiet and that was it. The end of Glade Io. Dead and drowned in the dark.
“Breathe.” A voice bit its way through the darkness and I startled, my lungs convulsing in my chest as they begged for air.
“You can breathe,” the voice said again.
I didn’t have a choice but to try. I was going to die either way. I gave up. Breath exploded as I reflexively released out and in, taking a deep, desperate gulp.
I was greedy, lusting for air as I took huge drinks of it. The burn in my lungs subsided and my brain stopped swimming.
I realized three things all at once. One, that I wasn’t in the complete darkness. There was a dim light maybe ten feet away from me. Two, that I wasn’t in water, though it rather felt like it. I was floating without gravity and the air had a strange quality to it, slippery and disorienting. Three, that three people were lining a wall ahead of me, and they were staring at me.
Two of them were Cast and Sullia. On their knees with their hands tied in front of them. The third was a girl, tall, thin, and with no hair on her head. She stared at me with undisguised hatred as she held a gun toward Cast and Sullia.
“Let her down,” the girl said in a surprisingly low voice. Husky.
There was a buzzing, a click, and half a second later, I was tumbling to the floor. The strange air that I’d thought was water had receded and I was subject to gravity once again.
“Get up,” a voice said from behind me.
Still gasping on my knees, I looked behind me to see a boy of about Cast’s age. He was stocky and wide. He had a sturdy look about him that was offset by the pale, fragile blue of his eyes. I eyed his gun as warily as I had the tall girl’s, but the boy didn’t have the same ringing hatred in his expression.
Allowing myself one more gasping second, I sat back on my haunches. It wasn’t more than a moment before I felt cold metal at my wrists and realized I was being shackled in the same way that Cast and Sullia were.
The boy, pressing the gun into the side of my neck, dragged me up by the shackles and over to Cast and Sullia.
“Up,” the tall girl said to all three of us.
We followed them out of the strange, dark room and into a blindingly bright hallway. I hissed against the light and had to wonder how long I’d been out for if my eyes were taking this long to adjust. Still disoriented, my eyes burning, I gasped in surprise when the boy’s hand gripped my shoulder and shoved me sideways into a room not much bigger than a closet. I stumbled, barely getting my footing before the door slammed behind me, cutting out most of the light. Only pinpricks of stars from the tiny window at the top of the room illuminated anything.
I heard two more slams just seconds later and realized these were holding cells for the three of us.
Two sets of footsteps disappeared down the hall and a distant door slammed.
“Glade?” Cast’s voice whispered in the dark from my left.
“Yeah.” My voice sounded like it had been shaved to the bone. There was almost nothing left of it. Just sun-bleached feathers.
“I-I,” his voice sounded years younger than he actually was. I thought involuntarily of my sisters. “I can’t feel my tech. My tech is dead. It doesn't look damaged, but it’s quiet.”
My brow furrowed as I looked down at my own tech. My hands were shackled at the wrist, so I tipped my arms to one side to get a better view. The motherboard in my arm. It was as iridescent as ever, looking for all the world like it was working. I twisted my hands in the shackles so that I could just brush my fingers over it. But I felt no corresponding buzz in the tech on my face. I let my joined hands trace up to my cheek, something I almost never did. I gently slid my palm over the tech that was implanted there. I could feel its cool edges against my skin, but it was ominously quiet: no information, no attempt to sync. Nothing.
I closed my eyes and attempted to sync. Nothing. I huffed out a frustrated breath. Again. Nothing.
I froze, my blood turning to ice as I put the pieces together. For the first time in over two years, there was silence. There was no tug of war. There was no tech. There was only me. Only Glade Io in this skull of mine. I was both dismayed and relieved. Free and terrified. I hadn’t realized how much I’d relied on the tech – the constant whisper of it guiding me, informing me – until it was silent. Just a dead synthetic thing stuck in my skin.


Check out the rest of the trilogy! 




No release date yet...!



About the Author 

Ramona Finn writes about courageous characters who fight to live in broken, dystopian worlds. She believes a person's true characters is often revealed in times of crisis, and there is no greater crisis than the worlds that she drops her characters into! 

She grew up sitting cross-legged on her town's library floor--completely engrossed in science fiction books. It was always the futuristic world or the universe-on-the-brink-of-extinction plotlines that drew her in, but it was the brave characters who chose to fight back that kept her turning the pages. 

Her books create deep, intricate worlds with bold characters determined to fight for their survival in their dystopian worlds--with a little help from their friends. And, of course, romance is never out of the question. To learn more about Ramona and her books, visit
http://ramonafinn.com. Also visit her on Facebook.




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Monday, January 1, 2018

Happy New Year! Introducing Writing Belle's 2018 Lineup!

Hello, 2018! It seems surreal to me that only a few moments ago (it HAD to be, right?), I was welcoming 2017 with open arms. Time flashes by, folks, especially when you're busy! 2017 was a fun and crazy year. I finished the Collapse Series and my company, Writing Belle Publishing, became a national distributor of print titles (woot!). I also got to do a little traveling last year, visiting fun places like Disneyland, the California desert, and Maui, Hawaii. 

I LOVE to read, and while I didn't get to read quite as much as I wanted to in 2017 due to impending deadlines and crazy schedules (and the fact that my husband and I moved again during the summer!), I did read some fun new books that opened my imagination and entertained me on many sleepy Sunday afternoons. 

2017, in retrospect, was also a year of profound growth for me. A year of learning and adapting and opening myself to new horizons, friendships, and opportunities. A year of developing my writing even further (hitting my 19th publication, and releasing my first-ever historical romance), and a year of excitedly readying myself for the new literary adventures that lie before me. 

2018 promises to be an even crazier, even busier year for me (I say that every year, but it's true!). If you're a follower of Writing Belle, Cassidy Hart/Collapse Series, and my author program here, below is the 2018 lineup of the major events happening over the next 6 months! 

January 2018 
Resurrection: Shadows of Omega 
The launch of the sequel series to the Collapse Universe will herald the return of popular heroine Cassidy Hart in a new role: President of the Western Republic. 



Promotion Program Launches 
I have turned Writing Belle into a stage for all creative talent. This year, the 2018 author promotion program extends to all artists: writers, singers, songwriters, editors, agents, filmmakers, and illustrators. Every Monday, until the end of the year (excluding holidays), I will feature one new author/rising talent. If interested in joining the program, visit the author program tab on this website (I am still booking into Fall 2018).



February 2018 
Novel Writing Masterclass
I am beginning my first-ever writing masterclass on February 6th, 2018. The class is 100% online, universally accessible, and incredibly affordable. The class is appropriate for writers of all ages, aspiring and veteran. Visit the masterclass tab on this blog to learn more. 



June 2018 
Next Resurrection Title Releases 
I will be releasing the second installment in the new series this summer. I have been receiving a lot of questions regarding Cassidy's new adventure. How many books will there be? My answer: at least 6. That's all I can tell you for now. 


I will not be releasing my schedule to the public past June 2018 at this time. Writing Belle will be constantly featuring new talent every week throughout this year. Keep in mind that I will also be teaching my online masterclass, and I will keep you all updated about that here, as well as on instagram (@writingbelle), Facebook (Summer Lane Author) and Twitter (SummerEllenLane). 

In the meantime...happy reading and writing. I will be back next week with our first promotion article of the year, featuring author Ramona Finn! 

Happy New Year! 






Friday, December 15, 2017

VIGILANTE: POST-APOCALYPTIC THRILLER FROM SUMMER LANE (AVAILABLE TODAY + Amazon Fire TV Giveaway!)


Vigilante
from #1 bestselling author Summer Lane!
AVAILABLE TODAY on Amazon and Barnes & Noble!
JUST 2.99 for Christmas!




I swore to protect her before I even knew her. Now, it’s the creed I live by.

Uriah True is a dangerous man. His past is cloaked in secrecy, and he writes his future in the blood of the people he kills. After the Great Global War, he leaves the militias behind to prey on the scum that remains loyal to the cruel and tyrannical regime of the defeated enemy Omega in this dangerous, new post-apocalyptic world.

Some call him The Hunter. Some call him Death.
He calls it vengeance for what the war took from him.

Hunt, kill, repeat.

When he uncovers a plot that could bring death to the only person he's ever loved, he’ll do anything to stop it.
Anything.


The only problem? He may already be too late.

A Collapse Universe Story.

A suspenseful novel from #1 bestselling author Summer Lane, creator of the smash-hit Collapse Series, Zero Trilogy, Bravo Saga, Unbreakable Seal, and the historical romantic thriller, Running with Wolves. Vigilante is a novel that stands alone, and is set within the Collapse Universe.


This novel features fan-favorite Uriah True and offers a thrill ride like no other!


***

Scroll to the bottom of this post to enter to win an Amazon Fire TV Stick and an Amazon gift card!

This is my first "surprise" release. I have never released a book without a release date planned ahead of time for months in advance - sometimes years. Vigilante was a bit of a pet project of mine, and I wanted to keep it a secret so that I had time to work on it and not feel pressured to release it within a certain time frame. I'm glad to release it in time for the holiday season (because who doesn't love to read over Christmas break or load up their shiny new tablets with a fun book?), and I'm extremely grateful for the many bloggers and websites who are promoting the novel! I love you ALL!

When I first wrote the character of Uriah True, he was little more than a supporting role. He was a sentry guard who had a single line of dialogue in State of Rebellion. He became a star. He became a man that Cassidy loved in the Collapse Series. He's complicated. He has a lot of secrets. Vigilante sheds some light on his past and explains a bit about why he is the way he is, and why he loves Cassidy the way he does.

Vigilante's timeline falls between State of Hope and Resurrection: Shadows of Omega. This book will tie into both series. Like all of my books, every story line is connected, and every character is somehow linked to the original plot. Yet the book can also stand alone as an adventure novel.

I think I love Uriah True as much as Cassidy Hart does, simply because he is perhaps the most organic and interesting character I believe I have ever written. He quite literally revealed his story to me as I wrote the Collapse Series, and I am astounded at the admirers that he has amassed.

And yes, there are three fan camps:

Team Uriah
Team Chris
Team Cassidy Stays Independent Forever

Who will win?

We shall see. But for now, please enjoy Vigilante. I hope you like it. I had a blast writing it. It was a lot of work, but man: it was fun! And, hopefully, this will tide everyone over until the big release in January. The launch of my new big series will also coincide with my 20th publication. That's a serious joy ride, folks. I thank you all for your readership. As always, I am stunned by your love and support. A writer would be nowhere without their wonderful readers.

Thanks for reading Vigilante, and if you like the novel, please don't hesitate to leave a review! I appreciate every review from every reader. Happy reading, and Merry Christmas, all!



Enter to win below:









Monday, December 4, 2017

EMIC RIZZLE, TINKERER (Middle Grade Novel from Mary Ann Domanska + Special Guest Article)



Title: Emic Rizzle, Tinkerer
Grade Level: Middle Grade Fiction 
Author: Mary Ann Domanska 
Release: Available NOW!

Synopsis

Emic Rizzle is a tenacious girl interested in taking objects apart and making them better. Unfortunately her life is unraveling at a faster pace than she can repair: her beloved grandfather passes away; her parents need to move to a different state; she may lose old friends and the kids at the new school think she's weird. But nothing is more strange than discovering her grandfather was an actual WWII spy and that the antique camera found among his belongings might hold a vital secret that mysterious men in black suits will chase her for. Emic needs new ideas and friends if she is going to save the day.



Writing a Middle Grade Novel? Talk to an Expert. Talk to a ‘Tween!

By Mary Ann Domanska


I’ve been an elementary school teacher for fifteen years. I was also a Girl Scout Leader for 6 years. I obviously must love to be around kids. I especially cherish helping children learn important life lessons as they struggle to figure out who they are and what they believe about themselves. I feel passionate about guiding my students to be their best selves, accept that no one is perfect, and that being out of our comforts zones is where we do the most learning and growing. For me, making that leap into the world of publishing was definitely outside of my comfort zone.

I was always happy, even as a child, to spend hours channeling my imagination. I wrote thousands of poems, stories, essays, speeches, stories, plays, and even a couple of movie-scripts. I also prolifically kept more than forty detailed journals of my life experiences growing up in a small southern town in the foothills of North Carolina where my parents took in foster kids. But this writing was all for me; a personal endeavor of healing, reflection, and hope.

It was in my practice of teaching and the advice I was constantly giving to my students that I realized that to grow as a writer I needed to share my work with the world. My first step was, after completing the manuscript for my first novel, was to form a small focus group of middle school girls, all of whom I’d known to be avid readers with strong opinions. I knew that if I asked, this group would have no difficulty throwing unfiltered, sometimes brutal, critiques my way. After communicating with their families and giving them an early draft of my first middle grade manuscript, Emic Rizzle, Tinkerer, these ‘tweens got right to work. They quickly devoured the chapters and when we met as a group I quickly learned to be more careful about what I ask for. They were certainly outspoken and they tore my first attempt to shreds! Well, not really, but their careful observations and honest feedback helped to reshape my novel in dramatic and unexpected ways. I am still so grateful to these girls who are now all thinking about which colleges to apply.

Now that I’ve begun this journey again with a sequel, with the working title Emic Rizzle Commits Random Acts of Art, I’ve again decided I should work directly with my target audience to help ensure my words ring true and sound authentic to the ears of a 10, 11, or 12 year old. This past summer I was able to attend and speak at the National Coalition of Girls’ Schools 2017 conference in Washington D.C. called Education Innovation – Building Cultures of Creativity. There I connected with another educator who works with the Saint Peter’s Girls Prep School in Johannesburg, South Africa. We’ve already begun a collaboration in which all of her 4th and 5th grade students are reading my first book. Next they will critique draft chapters from book two. I am so excited about this partnership and plan on Skyping with them later on in the school year. I will be a virtual visiting author! And I can’t wait to get my hands on their unfiltered, straight to the heart responses. It is constructive criticism in its most pure form and to this writer, it is worth more than gold.

Social Media Links:

Instagram: 
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Goodreads:
Amazon Author Page:
Kirkus Review:




About the Author 

Mary Ann Domanska is a 2nd grade teacher at Springside Chestnut Hill Academy in Philadelphia, Pa., where she has taught for the past fifteen years. Mary Ann earned a B.F.A. in Performing Arts with a minor in creative writing from Emerson College in Boston, MA.  There, she studied with the notable Latino poet, Martín Espada, and with Kristin Linklater, author of Freeing the Natural Voice. She spent her early career in Los Angeles where she held various positions in the entertainment industry including as a script reader for MGM Studios and as an assistant at the International Documentary Association (IDA) in Hollywood. She earned a masters degree in Elementary Education from Chestnut Hill College in 2001.  She attended The Creative Writing Institute (graduate level) at Arcadia University where she completed her middle grade novel, Emic Rizzle, Tinkerer, which had a release date in December,2016, through Mnemosyne Books. She published an article in the SCBWI Bulletin (Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators) entitled, Writing a Middle Grade Novel? Talk to an Expert. Talk to a ‘Tween! She has published several poems in the Philly Poetry Anthology with WRAGS Ink, Publishing (2012) and a collection entitled Unraveled through Moonstone Arts Center (Philadelphia).

She performs locally at the Stagecrafters Theatre in Chestnut Hill. She is on the board of MAAG (Mt. Airy Art Garage) and founded/hosted The Swerve, a monthly open mic poetry event (2014-2015).

Connect with Mary herehttp://maryanndomanska.wordpress.com










Thursday, November 23, 2017

BLACK FRIDAY & CYBER MONDAY BOOK SALE: CHECK IT OUT!


Happy Reading! 
Starting today, ALL of my bestselling titles (a total of 18!), are available for just 99 cents each. The ENTIRE Collapse Series has been dropped to 99 cents per book, including the popular final installment, State of Hope

Get them on Amazon or Barnes & Noble!


The sale ends at 9 p.m. PST, November 27th.

 Thanks so much for your readership. I hope you pick up a few of the books this weekend and enjoy the stories - I only drop the prices ONCE a year, so take advantage of this sale (especially since there are 10 books alone in the Collapse Series - that's only 10 bucks for the whole collection!)! 

Happy Thanksgiving!