Thursday, July 25, 2013

Obey the Muse

Oh no! I have been slacking here on Blogger again!

But that's because things have been happening. Cool, awesome things.

Like this:

My floor was not large enough to write out the whole title.

And Rage's Echo now has a release date. It will be available in paperback and ebook formats on October 1. I had so much fun writing this story, and I pray that you will enjoy it, too.

Also, I have joined forces with some amazing people and created a brand-new blog called Obey the Muse. ( We'll be talking a lot about writing, inspiration, and the randomness that everyday life brings. The Musers are:
LaDonna Cole
Pro cropLaDonna Cole is a Texas girl who thrives in the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee with her children. Playing Ukulele, singing, writing fantasy/fiction, and traveling as much as possible, a Psychiatric Nurse and incurable optimist, she draws on her zest for adventure, passion for family, and journey through faith to release the soul of each new story. Check out LaDonna and her imaginary peeps at,, and
547184_10151335581539838_176265025_nRM Harnist
RM [Robin] Harnist is a freelance editor and writing coach but also writes speculative fiction in those very few and far between spare moments.  She currently resides in Louisville, Kentucky with her fuzzy puppy, Gemma, and her evil cat, Kiya.
Check her out at,, and

Katie J Cross
967511_10100289094017004_1831005078_nMy world revolves around my husband, my dog, and the mountains. I wear hiking boots instead of heels when I need to feel powerful, and on a bad day, I love a weightlifting workout. Actually, I love it on a good day. I don’t eat bread because I choose not too, even though I miss it at times. I write because I have too.
Find her at:

Snapshot_20120725_2JS Bailey
J. S. Bailey is a lifelong resident of Clermont County, Ohio. She is an alumnus of St. Louis School and Clermont Northeastern High School, and graduated cum laude from Northern Kentucky University in December 2011 with a degree in Entrepreneurship.

Bailey learned to read at a young age and began writing soon after. She had a brief stint writing horoscopes for her high school newspaper before deciding she would have better luck inventing other things at the keyboard.

She penned her first (unpublished) novel while still in high school, and her debut novel The Land Beyond the Portal was released in July 2011 through Tate Publishing. Her other writing credits include short stories called Vapors and Weary Traveler and an upcoming novel called Rage’s Echo, which releases October 1.

Bailey enjoys reading books by her favorite authors. When she isn’t working or glued to a computer screen, Bailey spends time with her husband, Nathan, in their Southwest Ohio home.

Stephanie Karfelt, aka S. R. Karfelt
IMG_3626Writing fiction with a twist is my specialty. My novels crossover Contemporary Fiction with a dash of Urban Fantasy. Warrior of the Ages is my first novel, and will be released 8-15-13. It’s about an immortal warrior moonlighting as a cop, and just how dangerous a blonde in a speeding convertible can be for the world’s oldest bachelor. My hope is that this book will make cops everywhere think twice about trying to foist speeding tickets on women.

The latest on my books can be found at, or follow my blog if you need a laugh, at

Kelsey mustache picKelsey Keating

When I’m not writing (which is more often than I’d like), I’m often found doing something with very little grace. Like right now as I type this, taking momentary breaks to stuff my mouth full of Cool Ranch Dorito Crumbs.

But I guess that’s beside the point. I have four books written and rewritten, one of which is in the editing process.  My main foci are YA Fantasy and NA Contemporary novels.

To follow my insanity (and maybe see why they let me IN here), head over to my blog OR visit my website where I keep updates on all of these friends of my Asylum:
P.S. That mustache isn’t real. Or is it?

DM Kilgore
midnight writer cam 5 (2)“I am a once lost and broken soul who now knows the joy and beauty of being made whole.  I write about broken people striving to find their way to that place where they too realize the joy of being whole again.  Hope in the face of desperate circumstances is a reoccurring theme in my novels.”
D.M. Kilgore enjoys writing poetry, song lyrics, blog posts, articles, and both fiction and non-fiction books in various genres. She loves being a writing gypsy and dipping her toes into the sparkling stream of whatever genre she happens to be dancing by when inspiration strikes.
Currently, D.M. is making a splash in the blood-tinged waters of suspense filled thrillers.
Drop by her official website, and blog The Realm!
You can also follow D.M. on Facebook and Twitter: @DMKilgore
Experience the journey from cover to cover as D.M. Kilgore writes her way from published freelancer to published novelist!

KimroKimberly Robertson

Kimberly Robertson is a recovering high school English teacher, Mother to a tribe of boys, a non-profit Director, blogger and aspiring novelist.  She writes in the cracks of her life, often in random notebooks or on the pages in her head while car pooling, watching little league or caring for an ailing parent.  Her current blog project is a journey to self discovery to eat less, pray more and love abundantly  She has one faith based speculative fiction novel awaiting editing and is currently working on a YA project with her 9 year old son as inspiration.  Her goal in writing is to inspire, to encourage and to push herself and others into the beyond space-beyond limits, beyond expectations and beyond greatness.

Europe 328Katie McElhenney
Ever since age 3 when I read “See Spot Run” and felt annoyed that Spot wasn’t given more of a back story, I knew I needed to be a writer. I’m currently living the life of a nomadic homebody with my husband and dog and focusing on creating stories kids want to read. The biggest lesson I’ve learned so far in life is if you want to really understand the world, spend a few years teaching preschool. There’s more wisdom to be found on the playground than most people realize.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Choices of the Heart by Rhonda Kooyman

Choices of the Heart by Rhonda Kooyman is one of the most terrifying and moving novels I have read in a long time. It is written mostly as the fictitious memoir of a woman named Tracy Dewitt who became entrapped by a psychotic and manipulative boyfriend who brutally abused her for years. Though this story is fiction, it seems very real because Tracy's story happens to women every day all over the world. They know they can't stay with their abuser because they'll end up being killed, yet at the same time they believe that they can't leave because their abusers have led them to believe that they are helpless on their own.

This story is full of tragedy and heartache. I was actually frightened for Tracy as if she were a real human being, and it takes a lot of talent on the author's part to make me feel that way about a character. However, this novel does not lack in hope. Even though the choices Tracy made were devastating, she does learn from her mistakes and finds the ability to forgive. I wish I could give this novel ten stars. Kooyman's writing sucked me in so well that I actually felt like I was there with Tracy. I could see what she saw and feel her terror and desperation as if it were my own. I think that more people need to read this so they can recognize the signs of an abuser before it is too late for them.

I highly recommend this novel. It is a must-read.

Choices of The Heart

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Tell a Real Human Person!

I have read hundreds of books in my lifetime. Maybe thousands if you count The Cat in the Hat and Hop on Pop and all that stuff. But one author whose work I have yet to read is Neil Gaiman.

I follow Mr. Gaiman on Twitter, not because I have read his work (obviously), but because he is an author and I like to follow other authors to see what they're up to. Not the I'm-in-a-van-with-tinted-windows kind of following. You know what I mean.

Anyway, last night I saw this tweet from Mr. Gaiman:

A request. If you liked The Ocean at the End of the Lane, tell someone. Tell a real human person. It's all about word of mouth.

The Ocean at the End of the Lane is, evidently, his most recent novel. I think it's funny that he's trying to get people to use word of mouth to spread the news of "Ocean's" release because seriously, he's Neil Gaiman, and he has millions of fans who will eagerly snatch up his latest work without anyone having to tell them about it.

But for some of us, it's a different story.

My novel The Land Beyond the Portal was released two years ago. In that time, it has sold 500 copies.

That's it.

I have to do all the marketing on my own. My publisher published the book and helps me set up events, but they don't advertize their books. Their books do not find their way onto bookstore shelves except on rare occasions, like when I was invited to have a book signing at the Kenwood Barnes and Noble in October 2011. They kept "Portal" in stock for about three months after the event was over.

That was it.

But they looked amazing while they were there. :)

It is so hard being a first-time author whom nobody has ever heard of. Fortunately in the past couple years I have met some awesome fans who have shown unending love and support for my stories, and I will be forever indebted to them. They took a risk on a newbie and have stuck with me. I wish I could gather them all together for a big group-hug, and maybe that will happen someday (even though hugs are scary).

My second novel, Rage's Echo, releases on October 1 of this year. I've been brainstorming ways to get the word out so it will be more successful than "Portal." I write so that people will read my stories and enjoy them, and it's tricky finding those particular people. Not everyone likes every kind of story. It's kind of like looking at a scene from Where's Waldo? and trying to pinpoint my target audience among the throng. Who are you? And where are you hiding?

So please, people. If you read and enjoy a book, especially one by a lesser-known author, TELL people about it! Sing its praises to your hairdresser. Your doctor. Your pastor. Your kid's teacher. Your parents. Your siblings. Your cousins. Your cable guy. The person bagging your groceries. LEND them a copy. Or give a copy to them as a gift. Ask your library to add it to its collection. Recommend it to people on Goodreads. Tweet about it. Blog about it. Interview the author and give away a copy of the book as a prize for those who comment on it. Pin pictures of it on Pinterest. Write reviews and post them on Amazon. Climb to the top of the nearest mountain with a megaphone in hand and shout its praises to all the land.

Not everyone who hear about a book will want to read it. But what if, say, your hairdresser says, "You know, that sounds like it could be a really good book! I'll have to go check it out."?

That's what we ask of you. It means so much to us. We are the future Gaimans of the world. And it is up to you to help us get there.

 Rage's Echo releases October 1. Click here to preorder: