Blog Hoppin’!

ImageImage courtesy of T.L.’s Terrific Blog Hop

I’ve been invited on a blog hop! It’s like a game of tag, and I’m currently “it.” 

Valerie BielI was tagged by Valerie Biel, author of the young adult novel, Circle of Nine – Beltany. I’m so excited to read her novel—which is coming this summer!—and wanted to share the summary with you. Check it out:

Learning she’s descended from a legendary Celtic tribe is not a gift Brigit Quinn wanted. It only pushes her further away from the normal life she’s always dreamt of but couldn’t have growing up in a small town with a mom who practices an ancient pagan religion.

 Brigit doesn’t expect any more birthday surprises, but she’s proven very wrong. By the end of the day, she has a date with the best athlete in school, a plane ticket to Ireland to attend her first May Day celebration, and a thick book of family history she must read before the trip.  

 Story by story Brigit’s ancestors reveal their special talents and expose the treachery of others, past and present, who seek the power of her family.  Brigit is frantic with worry about what this ancestry means for her future by the time of the May Day trip.  Will she decide to embrace her unique heritage or shun it for the normalcy she has always craved?

Visit Valerie’s website to learn more about her books and her fabulous adventures as a writer!

My blog hop topic is all about my writing process, so I’m going to give you a glimpse into my crazy mind and how I get my ideas. First, though, I want to share with you a time, not so long ago, when a non-writer friend and I sat down for a chat and she asked me, “Is it hard to write a book?”

What flashed through my mind:
1) Sitting at my laptop, banging my head on the keyboard.
2) Shoving awful pages of my manuscript down the toilet and clogging it.
3) Throwing my laptop on the sidewalk in frustrated anger after five hours of writing and only having a few pages to show for it.
4) Sitting at a coffee shop and typing until my fingers ache.
5) Feeling like my brain is bleeding in an attempt to work through a plot hole.
6) Writing, but the whole time chanting to myself, “I suck! I’m a fraud! I was foolish to think I had talent!”

What I said out loud:
“No, not really.”

 Okay, all joking aside, my writing process begins with an outline (I’m a plotter, not a pantser) based on Joseph Campbell’s monomyth, otherwise known as the Hero’s Journey.

Once I’ve outlined, I sit down and write as much as I can without focusing on editing. My process is write hard and fast so my internal editor doesn’t shut me down. Sometimes I will re-read and do minor edits to scenes from a previous writing session (partly to fix errors and partly to get back into the fictional world).

When I’m not writing, I tend to daydream about writing. Many times, random scenes or snippets of conversation between characters will leap into my head. I always have to write them down fast before I forget them. I don’t usually advertise my crazy writer-ness to random passersby, but inside my head, things aren’t exactly normal.

But enough of my writing process. Now it’s my turn to tag some wonderful, up-and-coming writers, each of them sure to become bestselling authors! I’ve had the pleasure of reading their work and they all have phenomenal talent.

Laurie WetzelFirst, meet Laurie Wetzel, a young adult author who specializes in paranormal romance. Her forthcoming book, Unclaimed, will be available in just two months! Check out her fantastic website and this cover copy for the novel:

Getting close to MJ could cost more than a broken heart—it could cost Maddy her soul.

Abandoned by her birth parents and ignored by her adoptive family, Maddy Page believes she is unlovable. She only allows herself to dream of falling in love. That changes when she meets MJ; handsome and kind, MJ penetrates Maddy’s defenses. Maddy soon finds herself confiding in MJ like she has with no one else, revealing secrets even her closest friends don’t know. He makes her feel safe—a feeling she’s never experienced except in her dreams.

When Maddy witnesses MJ disappear and reappear in thin air, she realizes she might have been wrong about him. He could be dangerous—maybe even a killer. Determined to uncover the truth of who—or what—MJ is, Maddy ignores her instinct to run. But she soon realizes that getting close to MJ could cost more than a broken heart—it could cost Maddy her soul. . . .


ImageSecond, meet D.B. Moon, a hardboiled writer whose novel, He’s Either Dead or in St. Paul, is an incredible suspense story described as a cross between Stephen King and Raymond Chandler. Check out his website and this compelling summary:

God must have created Sylvester Hobbs while nursing a hangover. Dangerous and ill-tempered, Sly quickly realizes that life as a gangster in 1928 Prohibition St. Paul isn’t all speak easies and hot-and-cold running molls. Sometimes there’s Hell to pay.

After a botched snatch-and-grab, Sly finds a mysterious document on one of his deceased victims. The document, and the possible fortune it represents, grabs hold of Sly and refuses to let go.

Pinned down by a ruthless Mob boss and a crooked but savvy cop, Sly is forced to kidnap Father Patrick Murphy who alludes to the fact he has prior knowledge of the document.

Despite several warnings from Father Murphy to stop following the cursed piece of paper, Sly forges ahead with the frail old priest dragging behind.

The truth about the document unfolds layer by layer until its true origin is discovered.  Sly finds it isn’t the document he needed to fear, but who it really belongs to.


Last but not least, Ari Kos is a sci-fi writer who is currently working on an amazing thriller called Black Swanning. Check out her website and this summary of her novel:

Military intelligence officer Kate Galdin finds herself at the center of a crisis. Her country, the Trilateral Authority, has just been hit with a paralyzing cyber attack. Because the breach happened on Kate’s watch, it is her responsibility to clean up the mess and neutralize the threat. The job would be easy, if only she didn’t have to deal with her new partner: Mikhail “Misha” Stoyanov, a cryptography wiz who acts as though everything in life — including the mission — is a game.

On the other side of the world in Thailand, an A.I. call girl named Mei escapes a violent customer only to end up in the arms of aloof hacker Derrick Labann, who is on the run from the law after taking down a very big target in his native Trilateral Authority. Following Labann as his exclusive companion, Mei soon discovers that knocking out defense systems may be her client’s least troubling obsession.

Soon, their actions set off an unstoppable series of events that bring Kate and Misha closer to their mark and Mei closer to unlocking her capacity for free will.


So there you have it! Be sure to visit their websites and learn all about their remarkable writing. As always, feel free to leave a comment—whether that be recommending another up-and-coming writer or sharing your own creative project. I’d love to hear from you!

About alishabmarie

Sometimes I write things. Sometimes they are even good.
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