Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Guest Post: Creating an Alien Vampire - Abducted Life - New Release by Patricia Jospehine

Today, to celebrate the release of her latest book, a New Adult, Sci-fi Romance, Abducted Life, I am happy to welcome Patricia Josephine to my blog, and she's talking about

Creating an Alien Vampire

The dream I had that inspired Abducted Life was about a vampire trying to escape aliens. He had the clichĂ© vampire traits like fangs, but for Abducted Life I wanted Savannah and Evan's looks to reflect the fact that aliens messed with their genetics to make them less human––especially in Evan's case. Not so much for Savannah. I had some ideas in mind and there were a couple real life creatures that really inspired me.

Alien vampires are real
When it came to Evan and alien vampires, I had one specific animal in mind: a sea lampray. Specifically, it's mouth. I wanted Evan's changes to be something he had to cover and in doing so would make him stand out in a crowd. It also had to be horrifying. He shrugs it off in the story, but it's not an easy change to cope with as he makes it seem.

As for the alien creature, what I had in mind was something aquatic. I imagined something like the opposite of whales which breathe oxygen, but can spend hours under water. These creatures can spend hours on land, but only breathe underwater and hold their breath when out of the water. But since Evan is human and breathes oxygen, he can't breathe underwater. If he had been a fish spliced with this creature that'd be a different story. ;) Also, imagine something with a body like a crocodile, but the scaly skin isn't as rough.


Abducted Life

Patricia Josephine

Savannah Janowitz’s perfect life was destroyed the night she and her boyfriend vanished without a trace. When she reappears a year later––alone––she’s a shell of her former self. Robbed of her popularity and her boyfriend, she has no memory of what happened to her. Savannah struggles to move forward as strange, new abilities manifest.

Evan Sullivan never gave extra-terrestrials much thought until the night he and Savannah were abducted. While Savannah’s memory was wiped clean, he remembers every horrific detail. Constantly reminded of the experiments that made him less than human, Evan hides in the shadows and watches Savannah rebuild her life without him. But neither can let the other go.

When their paths cross, Savannah and Evan finally see a glimmer of their old lives return. As they face what happened to them, they soon discover they aren’t safe. There’s more to fear than what’s hiding in the stars.

Available for 99cents at Amazon.

About the Author

Patricia Josephine never set out to become a writer. In fact, she never considered it an option during high school and college. She was all about art. On a whim, she wrote down a story bouncing in her head. That was the start of it and she hasn't regretted a moment. She writes young adult under the name Patricia Lynne.

Patricia lives with her husband in Michigan, hopes one day to have what will resemble a small petting zoo, has a fondness for dying her hair the colors of the rainbow, and an obsession with Doctor Who.

You can find her lurking on Twitter, Google+, Goodreads, and Wattpad. Find the latest news at her website or sign up for her newsletter. A link to all her books can be found here.

Sunday, 5 February 2017

Book Review - Forensics: The Anatomy of Crime by Val McDermid

Forensics: The Anatomy of CrimeForensics: The Anatomy of Crime by Val McDermid

I really enjoyed this book. Even though it's non-fiction, Val McDermid still weaves a compelling story of forensic science from its birth all the way to modern techniques and their both successful and over zealous use in today's courts.

Val takes us through the development of a selection of forensic techniques, including blood splatter, finger prints, DNA and more. Each technique is tested and presented with its pros and cons, and there are some interesting discussions about efficacy and also the public's perception of these different techniques. The book also investigates the role of 'the expert' and how a forensic scientist's approach to testifying can change the fate of a trial.

I think that the fact these forensics are discussed, warts and all, is what makes this book different from other books I've read on CSI. It brings them into reality, away from the glamour of TV police procedurals and into the real problems that face forensic scientists, and also their real passion for their subjects.

View all my reviews

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Saturday, 24 December 2016

Merry Christmas! A Seasonal Short Story for You

Merry Christmas
A Happy New Year!

Here's a seasonal short story for you:
The Elves & The Toymakers

Not blessed with their own children, a dressmaker and her husband, a cobbler, find a way to share their love with children all around them.

This story is a re-imagining of the fairy tale The Elves and the Shoemaker with a Christmas holiday twist.

Monday, 7 November 2016

Happy Hug a Bear Day #HugABearDay

Today, 7th Nov, is Hug A Bear Day!
So go find your favourite teddy bear (or any plush toy, we're not discriminating here) and give him/her a big ol' cuddle :).

QUESTION: What was/is your favourite stuffed toy?

I had a toy koala when I was a child. He didn't have a name except Koala, and he wasn't all that squishy, but I loved him and cuddled him all the time. Yes, I am, sadly talking in the past tense, because he is no longer with us thanks to an incident with our dog when he was a puppy. I do, however, still hug Koala II, who was bought as a replacement after the sad demise of his predecessor. 

Koala II sits on top of my bookcase alongside a collection of other furry friends (some of which one would not expect to be furry): a raven, a snake, a turtle, a frog, two cats, and, yes, of course, a couple of actual teddy bears.

According to Days of the Year, stuffed animals go back all the way to ancient Egypt, but plush toys entered children's nurseries about 1830 (and if I remember correctly, the most popular mass-produced animal was an elephant). The Teddy Bear term was coined in 1902 and is named after President Theodore Roosevelt, who, when he was hunting, refused to shoot a baby bear. The Teddy Bear became an international best seller, and what's not to love about a cute, cuddly Teddy Bear?

In my opinion, no-one is ever too young, or too old for a Teddy Bear.

So, Happy Hug A Bear Day Everyone!

Monday, 31 October 2016

FREE BOOKS - Halloween Price Slasher and Trick or Treat 2016

Welcome to Wittegen Press Halloween Book Price Slasher Joining with Trick or Treat Book Blog Hop!

Happy Halloween!
31st October 2016

Today only, Tasha and I are discounting all of our Wittegen Press horror/paranormal themed books 
and we are taking part in the 
Trick-or-Treat Book Blog Hop
run by the wonderful Patricia Lynne. 
Many wonderful authors are giving away books instead of candy. See the list at the bottom of the post for all those taking part.

SO, our 99c paranormal & horror themed books are FREE
and our higher priced books have 35% off.
See the book listings below for details.

For even more exclusive FREEBIES join our newsletter (form below), where, for Halloween only, we are giving our members chances to grab the discounted books below completely FREE.

Trick-or-Treat Halloween Price Slasher
FREE books!

Every year at this time we launch a two story Halloween anthology to give away for AllHallowsRead. This is an idea supported by the wonderful Neil Gaiman where people give a scary book for Halloween. This year ours is truly chilling.

Made In Blood: Tales of Terror
Authors: Sophie Duncan & Natasha Duncan-Drake
Genre: horror Two delicious tales of terror to tingle the spine:
The Warmth of Blood by Natasha Duncan-Drake
Mirror Twins by Sophie Duncan

The book is downloadable from Smashwords for free, just follow the link and download it.

Free Books With Discount Codes

All of following books are usually 99c BUT are also available on Smashwords for free for 24hrs, but to get the discount you have to do the following:
  • click the buy button at the linked book page (click the title)
  • put the coupon code (in bold after the title) in the box on the page that comes up
  • click apply coupon
  • checkout as normal and the book is yours for free

Trick-or-Treat Halloween Price Slasher
Discount Books

We didn't want to leave out our other horror/paranormal genre books either, so they are reduced by 35%.

Author: Sophie Duncan
Genre: ghost story
Code: EY92D
Price: $3.99 $2.59 (35% off)
Is it symptoms left from his brain haemorrhage, or a guilty conscience that is making Tristan McCall see things no-one else can? Forced out of the police by scandal and illness, Tris is trying to rebuild his life through the renovation of the home he hopes to share with Xander, his husband. A sprawling Gothic pile, Berwick House is in need of attention, but Tris soon realises the attention is not all one way. Faced with a presence in the house only he can sense, Tris must decide if his damaged brain is playing tricks on him, or if Berwick House really holds a dark and dangerous message from beyond the grave.

Author: Sophie Duncan
Genre: vampire
Code: BN37F
Price: $2.99 $1.94 (35% off)
Tom Franklin has never really understood his midnight cravings for red meat. His Harley Street doctor had always diagnosed his symptoms as a protein deficiency, aggravated by stress, yet, when his symptoms escalate, Tom's parents are forced to reveal the truth: he isn't quite human.

Author: Sophie Duncan & Natasha Duncan-Drake
Genre: paranormal adventure and romance
Code: SE52M
Price: $1.99 $1.29 (35% off)
Discover the touch of the supernatural in this volume of short stories and novelettes.
Author: Sophie Duncan & Natasha Duncan-Drake
Genre: horror
Code: SG76Z
Price: $1.99 $1.29 (35% off)
Ghosts, zombies and haunted dolls are just a few of the disturbing creatures you will meet in this volume of short stories and novelettes.

Author: Sophie Duncan & Natasha Duncan-Drake
Genre: horror
Code: KS85H
Price: $1.50 $0.99 (35% off)
Two stories for lovers of horror and curses:
If Wishes Were... by Natasha Duncan-Drake
Happy Families by Sophie Duncan.

Author: Sophie Duncan
Genre: paranormal adventure
Code: NH48E
Price: $1.50 $0.99 (35% off)
The Hidden War has been raging unseen my normal eyes for generations and Zac Kithrall, demon-seer, and Damon Wulfres, demon-raiser, have grown up on opposite sides of it. Now they must work together, but Zac can't remember why.

Author: Natasha Duncan-Drake
Genre: vampire
Code: JM78G
Price: $2.99 $1.94 (35% off)
When you're a vampire hunter infected with vampirism your life expectancy is short. Nate's a hunter and Lexie's a witch and they have less than six months before Lexie's magic can no longer delay the symptoms and keep them at least partially human.

Click the links in the list below to visit the other great authors giving away books.

Join The Wittegen Press Mailing List

We'll send you details of book releases, competitions and other news from our authors, BUT we WON'T spam you, or pass your details on to anyone else.
Wittegen Press

We will also give you 2 FREE ebooks, not available anywhere else, just for signing up .

* indicates required

Monday, 24 October 2016

Announcing: Halloween Book Price Slasher (FREE and discount books from Wittegen Press)

Wittegen Press Halloween Book Price Slasher!

On 31st October 2016
Tasha and I will be discounting all of our Wittegen Press horror/paranormal themed books. 
That means many of our 99c books will be free and our higher priced books will have money off. Check back on the 31st to see all the deals.

For even more exclusive FREEBIES join our newsletter (form below), where, on Halloween, we will be giving our members chances to grab those discounted books completely FREE.

You get two free books just for signing up anyway and 
on 31st Oct 2016 
we will be sending out our exclusive offers all day.

We'll send you details of book releases, competitions and other news from our authors, BUT we WON'T spam you, or pass your details on to anyone else.
Wittegen Press

We will also give you 2 FREE ebooks, not available anywhere else, just for signing up .

* indicates required

Wednesday, 7 September 2016

The Insecure Writer's Support Group - Finding Time...

The Insecure Writer's Support Group (IWSG) stated purpose is to share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Where we can post our thoughts on our own blogs. Talk about our doubts and the fears we have conquered. Discuss our struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling.

Plus, a question is posed, and this month's is: How do you find the time to write in your busy day?

The answer, sadly, is that I don't manage it all of the time, especially if work has been fraught and all I want to do is collapse and sleep when I get home. However, I do try to be bite-size, and I make sure I write at least once a week with The Drabble Cascade, a flash fic challenge that I and my sis, Tasha run over on our erotic romance blog, Fantasy Boys XXX. It only takes 100 words, maybe half an hour a week, so it keeps my writing hat weathered. (I have to admit here that there have been a couple of weeks recently where I totally forgot due to life challenges, but they are rare misses).

My favourite time of the day for creative thought is actually early in the morning, just after I get out of bed, when sleep has gone away, my brain wanders over ideas. Sometimes, when I am really inspired I do write when I'm on my exercise bike (I have a little tray designed for hanging off the back of car seats attached to the bike where I can put my Surface).

I also have my Surface open when I'm watching TV in case the muse strikes. Although with the TV on, that usually leads to notes for when I next sit down and write.

Finally, I work 4 days a week to earn a living, so that means of the working week I have one day when I am a writer. Some of this day is spent with marketing and networking, but I do make sure I have at least a couple of hours for writing (most weeks, that is, because sometimes life gets in the way as it has a tendency to do).

Anyone got any good tips on how to fit it all in?


Wittegen Press
$3.99 | £2.87
Amazon | Other
I mentioned last month that I don't think  I'm not writing enough and I'm not achieving my goals. And to sort this out, I've given myself a list of goals and I promised to keep everyone up to date, so here it is:

My goals list progress:

Wittegen Press
$2.99 | £2.32
Amazon | Other
  • Finish Ghost Blood Draft #1 - only 2 out of five scenes left to go, which is pretty crap for a whole month, but I'm getting there and it's better than the previous month!
  • Rewrite the start of Sacrifice of An Angel
  • Finish Bonds of Fire Extended Version
  • Take The Case of the Cursed House plan and turn into Draft #1