Tuesday, 20 May 2014

MJ's Steamy Reads Features the Extraordinary Aly Martinez!

Hello All!

In order to make up for the long delay in releasing Breaking Love, I am featuring a new author each month until November. They all write steamy romance novels that have made me swoon, so I'm betting that you will love them, too! As promised, I will be hosting Rafflecopter giveaways of $25 Amazon Gift Cards, and I'm starting it right now!

This month, I am excited to bring you two books written by my wonderful friend, the very talented Aly Martinez. And let me tell you about Aly—she knows great sex.

Her first book, Changing Course, came out in January, and she has quickly followed up with her second novel, Stolen Course (coming out May 21st!). They are books one and two of her three-part Wrecked and Ruined Series. (No cliffhangers here, just three fabulous stories!).

To enter the drawing for the Amazon Gift Card or 1 of 5 e-copies of Changing Course:

Like Aly on Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorAlyMartinez  

and/or follow her on Twitter here: Twitter: https://twitter.com/AlyMartinezAuth

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Changing Course (Wrecked and Ruined #1)
**Each book in this series can be read as a stand alone.**
I met Sarah Kate Erickson when I was twenty-one years old. I was lucky enough to keep her for seven years before a tragic accident stole her from me. She didn’t die, but sometimes I think it would have been easier if she had. 

I lived in a haze for those four years after the accident. Catering to her every need, even though she hated the very sight of my face. I tried to hold on to her and the future that we were supposed to build together. But you can’t hold on to someone that doesn’t exist anymore.

It wasn’t until I met Jesse Addison, a barista at the local coffee shop, that I realized I didn’t just lose Sarah that tragic night, I lost myself as well. Jesse taught me how to let go of the past and learn to love again.
But what happens when your past haunts your present and the woman you used to love refuses to accept the woman you can’t live without?
Buy Links: (Will be 99c until the 22nd)

Stolen Course (Wrecked and Ruined #2)
**Each book in this series can be read as a stand alone.**

I fell in love with Manda Baker eight years ago, and I loved her to the core of her soul. We were supposed to have that elusive happily ever after and spend a lifetime together. But that was all before she was STOLEN from me. 

Her best friend, Sarah Erickson, killed her. It wasn’t intentional. It was far worse. Everyone claims it was just an accident, but I can see through the lies. Even if it’s with my dying breath, I will make her pay for what she did. 

Fate hates me. It robbed me of my first love and left me to navigate through this world emotionless and numb. Then, one day, spiteful fate gave me a woman to fill my shattered soul and make me feel again. It gave me Emma Jane Erickson. Now I spend my days searching for the answers that will ruin Sarah and my nights falling in love with her sister—the one person who is bound and determined to save her. 

But what happens when everything you know to be true explodes around you? Who will be left to pick up the pieces, and who will need to be saved from the wreckage?

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/19169739-stolen-course

Buy it Here!: AMAZON.COM               http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00KF2SCWQ
                    AMAZON.CO.US            https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00KF2SCWQ
                   BARNES AND NOBLE    http://bit.ly/1gHBFe0

Here are a couple of Stolen Course teasers to whet your appetite...

About Aly
Born and raised in Savannah, Georgia, Aly Martinez is a stay-at-home mom to four crazy kids under the age of five, including a set of twins. Currently living in Chicago, she passes what little free time she has reading anything and everything she can get her hands on, preferably with a glass of wine at her side.
After some encouragement from her friends, Aly decided to add “Author” to her ever-growing list of job titles. So grab a glass of Chardonnay, or a bottle if you’re hanging out with Aly, and join her aboard the crazy train she calls life.

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AlyMartinezAuth

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/AlyMartinez

Saturday, 3 May 2014

Writer's Block: 6 Ways to Get Your Characters to Speak to You Again

Hello All!

Yesterday I received an email from a fellow writer asking what I do when I have writer's block. Once I finished the answer, I thought I might as well blog it in case it helps anyone else. So here are the 6 things I do when my characters stop speaking to me...

When I'm stuck I generally do one of the following: 

1) Go for a long walk. I like to be out in nature with my dog, so I take her to the woods where I can really be alone with my thoughts. I try not to think about the book for a while, but just let my mind wander.Eventually I start daydreaming about the story until it picks up where I left off. 

2) Re-read what I've written. From start to finish. I helps me connect with the characters and ask myself if what I have them doing is realistic for each of them. Can people relate to it? Is there something I don't like about the story that is getting me stuck? This also helps if I have lost confidence in what I'm doing. I might have started having doubts about the story, my ability to write, etc. Going back over it allows me to see that I do like what I've written so far and that I can do this.

3) Read blogs about writing/writers block, etc. If you check out my tweets, I've sent quite a few links to blogs that were really helpful to me. 

4) Move On in the Story. Skip the part you are on and write a scene that will come later in the book (and that you know what is going to happen). This can help because you are still making progress. With my second book I had to do this a couple of times. I wrote myself into a real corner and it took me a while to figure out how to get out of it. 

5) Leave it for a while. Maybe a day or so. Do non-writing things. Clean out a closet, go out with friends, do yoga, cook a great meal. Getting rid of some project that I have hanging over my head can help to clear the space it takes up in my mind so I can get back to writing. Doing things I enjoy relieves stress, which helps the process flow again when I am ready to sit back down. 

6) Have a Little Faith. Trust that the ideas will come flooding back in very soon. They will. You started writing because you have a story to tell. You'll finish it. Worrying about writer's block only serves to block your mind and take your thinking from the creative right brain to the lower level thinking of the amygdala, which is what we use when we are in fight or flight. Ever heard of an author writing a novel while being chased by a bear? Me neither.

So believe that you'll get back into the groove any minute now. Have a glass of wine (or a tea if that's your thing). Be confident. The story is already in you. When you relax it will come out. 

And that's about it. Post your comments below if you have any tips to share with others. I'd love to hear from you!

All the best to you and yours,