Sunday, July 28, 2013

Kristia's Wedding Dress Champions Announced!

Dress champions announced!

Are y'all ready to help us choose Kristia's wedding gown? We sure hope so! Congratulations to the dress champions!!!

Dress #1: Aly @wzbookends
Dress #2: Melinda Dozer @melindadozier
Dress #3: Stephanie Wardrop @s_wardrop
Dress #4: Christina @BiblioThoughts

Champions, let us know why your dress is the PERFECT dress for Kristia, and why Ull will fall in love with her all over again when he sees her in it. E-mail your post to ullmyhr(at)gmail(dot)com -- the posts will go live on my blog on August 2, and voting will be live from August 2-6. The dress that gets the most votes will be featured in Endre, and its advocate will get to choose the next Ull POV scene I write from Elsker.

And if you love a dress, be sure to get in touch with its champion to find out how you can help bring in the votes for your favorite. 

We can't wait to see which dress Kristia will wear!

Skal!
ST and Stacey, #TeamElsker
Dress #1

Dress #2

Dress #3

Dress #4



Thursday, July 18, 2013

Breaking the Rules by Melinda Dozier

Today I am so so so so so so excited (that's six sos, to all you math peeps) to bring back Melinda Dozier.  I heart her so hard, and I'm so proud to tell y'all she's got a brand spankin' new release out! Breaking The Rules hails from Crimson Romance, and Melinda's Hope and Colin are two of the most adorably loveable MCs ever. Hope's a middle school principal (and hopeless klutz), and she's doing everything in her power not to fall for the hunky Dr. Colin. To do such a thing would be against all of her rules. But as the title suggests, Breaking the Rules might just be the best thing Hope ever does. I dunno, what would you do?

Naturally Ull had to jump in and interview Melinda's latest hero to see if he's worthy of Hope.  And so I give you... Melinda's Good Doctor and my Asgardian Assassin. You're welcome, ladies. ;)




  So what do you think? Would you break the rules for Dr. Colin? *eyebrow raise* I think we all know where Melinda and I stand on this. But tell us what you'd do in the comments!

Blurb:


A forbidden love affair in the past has led Hope Robinson, a middle school principal, to Harbor Bay, Florida, where she commits herself to play by the rules. This can be difficult for a perpetual klutz, who—even strapped in a cast—has to uphold a competent attitude at all times.

Luckily, she has Dr. Colin Calaway on her side, a widower and father of a student, who is ready to give love another try. When Colin convinces Hope they should explore the connection between them, a steamy romance develops, though it could destroy them both. They must decide if their jobs—and their hearts—are worth the risk.

EXCERPT:
He shook his head. “I can’t believe we’re doing this.”

“Doing what?” She looked around, confusion in her eyes.

“Talking about the weather.” He scooted closer to her, making her back up toward the railing. 

“Colin—” A warning came from her mouth.

He scooted her all the way back. “You can’t go around saying stuff like you did back there and just pretend nothing’s happening.”

“I’m sorry, Colin. I didn’t think before I spoke.”

He put his arms around her, holding onto the rail. “Sometimes it’s better to just speak what’s on your mind.” He lifted one hand and caressed her cheek. “Damn it, Hope. Life is too short to ignore the truth and the truth is that we are extremely attracted to each other.”

She opened her mouth, then closed it before saying anything. He was right, but she didn’t know what to do about it.

“Don’t deny it.” He brought his thumb down and touched her bottom lip. 

Leaning into his touch, she said, “Remember we’re just friends.”
He shook his head. “To hell with friends, Hope. I haven’t felt like this in so long.” He placed his forehead on hers and leaned in more. Enough that she could feel his quickened breath on her chin. 

“Me too.” She sighed. Leaning back, she looked in his eyes. “I know it’s not fair, but we can’t.”

“I’m not going to lie—this is freakin’ frustrating.” He scraped his hand over his face. “I mean, I haven’t been on a date in months, because I just don’t feel it with anyone. Then, when I do feel ‘it,’ I can’t do anything about it.”

She looked down. “I feel the same way and I’m frustrated, too.”
“Then why are we ignoring it? Even the tarot card lady said we should be more than friends.”

She rolled her eyes. “Oh, and she is a knowledgeable source to trust.”

“Just hear me out, Hope.” He stroked her hair, causing her heart to beat faster. “We’ve had an amazing afternoon together.” He pointed back and forth between them. “This is who we really are. You. Me. Hope and Colin. Just two people having an incredible time together. See how much fun we can have if we forget all the labels? No principal, parent, doctor bull crap. Just us.”

She sighed and looked into his eyes. “It has been a great day.”

“You need to just stop thinking about all the reasons why we shouldn’t be together and look at the one reason why we should.” He held her chin up. “Us.”

MELINDA'S BIO:
Melinda Dozier lives in Guatemala, Central America, with her husband, three boys and German Shepherd.  She enjoys being the queen of her household and dreams of being pampered fully by her boys once they’re grown. Learn more about her at www.melindadozier.com. 

You can also find Melinda on twitter at www.twitter.com/melindadozier or 

Facebook at www.facebook.com/melindadoz

GIVEAWAY:
Melinda is giving away an ecopy of Breaking the Rules and winners choice of a Yankees or Red Sox baseball cap through her tour wide giveaway. Winners must enter via Rafflecopter and will  be chosen on July 27.

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Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Introducing Monica B. Sanz -- The Awkward Love Song of Abigail Archer

If you're looking for my NAmazing Adventure post, click HERE!

Today I'm excited to introduce author and fellow Indie Ignites contributor, Monica B. Sanz! Monica's new release, The Awkward Love Song of Abigail Archer is a haunting love story, complete with its very own song. Check it out! 

Blurb:  
Refusing to collect a soul was never a part of his bargain...

Haunted by the death of a fiancée he doesn’t want, Marcus Kent strikes a deal with Death. For a century, he gathers souls by night in exchange for her life. By day, he endures a droning existence at her side while troubled by the many lives he has taken. However, when he’s tasked with collecting Abigail Archer’s soul, that monotonous gray is dispelled. He not only finds a healthy girl—with an eerie likeness to his fiancée—waiting for death, but a girl as plagued as he by the death of another.

Drawn to the mysteries of her soul, and the reason she waits for death, Marcus forms an awkward friendship with Abigail that quickly grows into more. She breathes life back into him. He can't relinquish it—any more than he can relinquish her.

But breaking a deal with Death has consequences he cannot escape—at least not for long.


Genre: Paranormal Romance/Women’s Fiction

Tell us about yourself.

This question always stumps me! Let’s see… I’m a mom and a wife, and I love the beach, Sour Patch Kids, and Cold Case (I think I’m obsessed.) Oh, and I’m learning German for no reason at all. Guten Tag!

How did you become a writer? 
Writing has always been a passion, so I can’t say that anything caused it other than the desire to write. It’s just something I’ve always done and I can’t imagine not doing it.

Abigail sounds seriously awesome - and seriously dark. How did you set the mood to write your heavier scenes? Music? TV shows? 
Definitely music. When I sit down to write, the first thing I do is find a song that matches the mood I hope to convey in that particular scene/chapter. I find lyrics distracting, so I stick to post-rock and film scores. When I find *the* song, I play it once more to “center” myself in the scene, and then I begin to write. I’m told my writing is emotional and lyrical, and I think this has a lot to do with it. There is something special in finding the right song and getting lost in it while the words are flowing. I’m able to completely shut out the world and really tap into the emotions and moods of my characters. 

If your MCs had theme songs, what would they be? 
Dead Hearts by Stars. I always imagined this song to be a conversation between Marcus and Abigail, where she finally understands how painful it is for Marcus to take souls, and not just physical pain either. At first she doesn’t understand and thinks he’s an emotionless jerk, but he opens her eyes to how heartbreaking it is. Dead Hearts fits the situation perfectly.

When Abigail becomes a movie, what will the top five songs on the soundtrack be? 
Well, I was blessed enough to have a very talented composer, Elliot Corner, compose a song for the book! It’s titled The Awkward Love Song of Abigail Archer, and so that would definitely be first on the soundtrack. The other four would be:
Mono  Are You There
Mono  Burial at Sea
Audiomachine     Wounded Heart
Chopin Nocturne in C Sharp Minor

And who would you cast as your MCs?
Ben Barnes and Mia Wasikowska are the perfect Marcus and Abigail. Ben would have to grow his hair out though, the way it was when he played Prince Caspian *swoon* 

If you met Marcus in a coffee shop, what would you do? 
Oh gosh, I’d hug him and apologize for everything I put him through! He’s such a good guy, and wants to make things right, but he’s so torn between duty and desire that it breaks my heart to even think of him.


The Awkward Love Song of Abigail Archer is available in paperback and ebook format on 
Black Opal Books, Amazon, B&N and Kobo.


Author Bio: Always a lover of the written word, Monica Sanz spent her childhood whisked off into the many worlds within books, and has spent her adult life creating them. She’s a self-professed hopeless romantic, and strives to give her readers deep, emotional pieces that will stay with them long after they’ve put them down.  When not writing, you can find her on the sunny beaches of South Florida where she resides with her husband and two children.

Connect with Monica:
Twitter @MonicaBsanz
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MonicaSanzAuthor
Blog: http://monicabsanz.blogspot.com/

Excerpt:

“I know I said I never ask, but I’m curious,” Marcus said. “The night that I came for you, when you were waiting for me, you weren’t injured in any way. I know that sorrow can sometimes drive anyone to do things, especially to themselves.”

Abigail frowned. “You mean did I take my own life?”

He let his uneasy silence answer. 

Abigail turned over and focused back on the dark overhead. “I could never bring myself to do it,” she said finally. “I did think of it sometimes...often. I always thought that if you experience anything for long enough, it somehow becomes easier, almost as if it sprouts roots and becomes a part of you. I didn’t want that. I didn’t want to get used to the pain and to missing her. But just as it’s been an insult to her memory for me to go on living, it would have been worse to end my own life. How could I be selfish enough to swallow a bottle of pills just because I couldn’t deal with the pain anymore? No. I deserve to live. I deserve to wake up each day and remember.”

Marcus nodded and waited until her last words settled between them before asking, “Then are you ill somehow?”

Abigail smiled. “Does heartbreak count?”

Marcus regarded her for a moment, staring at the deep sadness in her eyes. “Yes, it counts.”

“Then yes, I am ill. And when I die, it will have been of a broken heart.”

Be sure to check out The Awkward Love Song of Abigail Archer. Doesn't it sound fantastic?

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Immortal Interviews: Ull meets Jack



I have a big treat for y'all today. Our Norse cutie-pie Ull is interviewing Jack, the immortal gargoyle from Louise D. Gornall's brand new release, In Stone.  

But first, here's a quick peek at In Stone: 
Beau Bailey is suffering from a post-break-up meltdown when she 
happens across a knife in her local park and takes it home. Less than a week later, the new boy in school has her trapped in an alley; he’s sprouted horns and is going to kill Beau unless she hands over the knife. 

Until Eighteenth-century gargoyle, Jack, shows up to save her.

Jack has woken from a century-long slumber to tell Beau that she’s unwittingly been drafted into a power struggle between two 
immortal races: Demons and Gargoyles. The knife is the only one in existence capable of killing immortals and they’ll tear the world apart to get it back. To draw the warring immortals away from her home, Beau goes with Jack in search of the mind-bending realm known as the Underworld, a place where they’ll hopefully be able to destroy the knife and prevent all hell from breaking loose. That is, provided they can outrun the demons chasing them.

Pretty fantastic right? Now take it away, gentlemen. 

Ull: Jack, will you tell me about the world you are from?

Jack: Right now everything is a mess. There's this knife floating around that has the power to kill immortals. Where I come from there are two types of immortal, there's us and then there are demons. Demons are dangerous. As a gargoyle it's always been my job to protect the humans. Pretty easy work until this knife shows up. Now the demons think that if they get their hands on the knife they can challenge us and take this world... Nightmare.

Ull: So you live on Midgard -- Earth?

Jack: I do. I live in a stone shell, perched above a door at Saint Sebastian's church.

Ull: And you are a... gargoyle. I do not think I have ever met one before. What exactly is a gargoyle?

Jack: A gargoyle is... well, Beau would tell you we're hideous lumps of stone. She'd be half right. It's the shell that's a lump of hideous stone, what's inside is the person you were before you landed yourself in Purgatory.

Ull: Purgatory?

Jack: Yeah, that's where we come from.

Ull: What does a gargoyle do? Are you a warrior?

Jack: I'm a protector. I mean, we get into fights, but we don't gear up for war like you guys do. Still, like a warrior, there are some things I would die for...

Ull: Gods are not supposed to interact with mortals, but we seem to have blown that one right out of the water lately. Any laws governing gargoyles?

Jack: We're not allowed to "reveal" ourselves to humans either... but there's this girl. There's always a girl, right? I need her help destroying the knife. She's an absolute pain in the arse, but I don't know what I'd do without her.

Ull: I know the feeling. *grins* What do you wish you could do that you cannot do?

Jack: There's not much that I can't do, but I do wish that there was no such thing as bad blood. I wish that I could hold a friend when I know she's hurting. Above everything I wish I didn't know what I do now.

Ull: I am so sorry. Hold on just a moment. *answers mobile phone* Hei hei, darling. What? Oh, you have got to be kidding me. Fine. *puts down phone* Kristia wants me to ask what a gargoyle eats. Specifically, she wants to know your favorite flavor of cupcake.

Jack: Is Kristia the kind of girl that'll get mad if I tell her I don't eat? Tell her I don't eat. Tell her I'm dead so food is sort of superfluous to me, but Beau eats cookies like they're going out of style.

Ull: *answers phone again, looking irritated* Hei hei, Inga. No. I will not ask him that. What? Oh, all right. *puts down phone* Sorry about that. Now Inga wants to know what a gargoyle wears. And if cashmere irritates your skin on account of the stone thing. I swear...

Jack: *looks down at his clothes, twists his lip, scratches his head* Is cashmere clothes? I picked up my jeans and sweater from a local shop in town. Cashmere -- it kind of sounds like a type of fragrance, don't you think? Tell her I'm not sure, I've never used Cashmere, but I smell kind of musty from the stone so I'll give it a go.

You can read more about Jack in IN STONE, now available at:






Monday, July 1, 2013

Vote #TeamULL at the #NACrushTourney RIGHTNOW!

It's here! Voting day for the #NACrushTourney! Voting is live until midnight EST TODAY, JULY 2, so pretty please with nutella on top go to 
http://www.naalley.com/2013/07/match-8-drew-12-vs-ull-5.html 
and cast your vote for ULL. You get one vote per IP address, so tell your hubby, your neighbor, your barista, anyone you can think of! Our favorite Norse god is up against a NYT Bestseller, so he needs every vote he can get.

#TeamUll member KA Last put together the most amazing video in support of our guy. I watched it so many times I thought I broke the clip. And yes, I cried every single time. KA's an absolute genius -- and she's available for book trailers/covers through KILA Designs!

And go RIGHT NOW to http://www.naalley.com/2013/07/match-8-drew-12-vs-ull-5.html and VOTE FOR ULL!!!


Now on to the sappy stuff. Hey, it's me. You knew it was coming. ;)

I'm feeling so many things today. Excited that Ull got to participate in the NA Crush Tourney at all -- he was a huge longshot, and I'm so thankful to every single person who voted him in. Floored that our guy's in an actual competition with a New York Times bestseller! And a little sad -- there's a pretty good chance we've only got one round in this deal, and it has been SO MUCH FUN playing with the awesome advocates and team members over at #TeamUll. I honestly couldn't think of a time I've had more fun 'working'. Ever. 

But mostly, I feel tremendous gratitude. Thank you Stacey Nash, for stepping in as Ull's chief advocate. You devoted countless hours to getting Ull's name out there and I will never be able to thank you enough. And thank you to the Aus-some girls of Aussie Owned and Read, who jumped right in alongside Stacey as Ull's official advocates. Lauren, Sharon, Cassandra, Katie, Suse, KA, Emily -- you contributed your remarkable talents in so many ways; from your banners and limericks to your blog posts, reviews, epic trailer, and the sea of matching Ull avatars that haunted everyone's twitter feeds. Thank you for letting me be an honorary Aussie this week. I have mad love for y'all.

Thank you to every single member of #TeamUll. Your memes, tweets, blog posts, shares, and absolute dedication to our boy have blown me away. I'm beyond humbled that y'all would put yourselves out there for me. Ull and I have a special thank you cooked up. It will be on the #TeamUll facebook page at the end of voting day -- we hope you like it. (Don't worry, we'll get it to you via e-mail if you're not on facebook.)

It's been a fantastic journey. And I'm just so appreciative that I've gotten to be a part of NA Alley's first ever NA Crush Tourney!  Now get out there and VOTE FOR ULL! If you need one more reason, well...



VOTE FOR ULL!!
http://www.naalley.com/2013/07/match-8-drew-12-vs-ull-5.html

Update: Oh... and guess what just happened on twitter? You'll never believe it. 
Holy cow! How awesome is that??? Abbi Glines tweeted us!!! Like, bestselling author, Rush's maker, absolute creative genius Abbi Glines! #TeamUll, I heart you so hard. Thank you for every single thing you've done. Every. Single. Thing.   

INDIEpendence Day 2013 Hop!

If you are looking for the #NACrushTourney post click HERE. To vote for Ull click HERE.

Hei hei, y'all! Welcome to the INDIEpendence Day 2013 hop, sponsored by The Indelibles! Today I get to celebrate one of my favorite small press/Indie authors, Stephanie WardropI met Stephanie through the Indie group blog, Indie Ignites. And when I found out she was doing a series of Jane Austen inspired novellas, I was beyond excited.  Charm and Consequence is the second in Stephanie's Snark and Circumstance series -- a fantastic group of novellas based on Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice. And it's fabulous.


Charm and Consequence: 
Sixteen-year-old Georgia Barrett is no expert on guys. Her bio-class partner is harder to dissect than anything on their lab tray. He’s smart, almost as sarcastic as she is, and can’t refuse a date with her fast enough. So why does he seem so upset when a senior hottie takes an interest in her? Could his game of playing hard to get have just backfired?







Pretty awesome, right? I'm a huge fan of Jane Austen, and I'm fast becoming a huge fan of Stephanie's. Her voice is absolutely brilliant, and when I read Georgia Barrett I hear echoes of one of my favorite YA characters, Mia Thermopolis from Meg Cabot's Princess Diaries. Georgia is clever, sassy, opinionated, and quintessentially honest. Stephanie has created such a believable character in Georgia, I honestly think I'm going to bump into her on the street one day, where I know she'll harangue me about my carnivorous diet. I absolutely adore "George" and her maker gets huge points in my book for making me smile as much as Meg Cabot always did. Jane Austen meets Mia Thermopolis? Yes, please! 

Snaps to Stephanie!

You can find Charm and Consequence and Snark and Circumstance at:

And enter the Rafflecopter below to enter to win a $5 Amazon giftcard from me! Since Stephanie's books are only $0.99, you could buy both Charm AND Snark, and still have $3 left over for more fabulous Indie books! Happy INDIEpendence day, y'all!



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