Friday, 29 November 2013

Today is my 2nd Blogversary and to celebrate - an announcement - The Wittegen Press Advent Giveaway

Believe it, or not, today I have been posting on this blog for 2 whole years! :) 

This is number 210 of my posts, which have included my random ramblings, film reviews, book reviews, blog hops, fiction and many more things that just occurred to me at the time :)

So, what am I going to do in my blogversary post? Well, actually, I'm going to take the opportunity to shout out about the next big event that I'm hosting here, which is
The Wittegen Press Advent Giveaway.

In fact, I am sharing the hosting of this giveaway with my sister, Tasha, who blogs over here, And you're wondering what this giveaway is all about, then? - well, I hope you are anyway. ;P

Every day during the countdown to Christmas, Wittegen Press is giving our readers a chance to win a copy of a different one of our eBooks. Plus, if you check out every post and collect the letter of the day, there will be a chance to win all 24 eBooks if you can tell us what message our letters make.

This list will be filling up day by day with our competition giveaways. Make sure you check back every day, because each competition will only be open for one day. Good luck everyone, and hope to see you back here on 1st to start winning. :)

Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Interview with Hannah Pole, author of Song of The Wolf

Today, I am welcoming author of contemporary fantasy, Hannah Pole, as a guest to my blog. She's on a blog tour at the moment promoting her book, Song of The Wolf, and has agreed to answer some of my questions :).

Tell us a little about yourself.

Well hello! Firstly, thank you so much for hosting me! You rock for sure!

My name is Hannah, I am a huge lover of everything occult, paranormal and mythical. I love Batman, and I have a house full of far too many animals!

I live by the sea and spend all the time I have either writing or reading.

Currently it is so cold in my house because we had a ridiculous storm that ripped most of the rendering off my house, that I am sat here writing with gloves on!

And now some questions about your book, Song of the Wolf.

Give us some background about the plot for Song of the Wolf and what made you want to write it.

Song of the Wolf is hands down my favourite book in this Call of The Wilderness series, that also includes the first book, Silence of the Wolves. I put blood sweat and tears into writing it, and I am now struggling to top it with book three! There is a particular section (you will know it if you read it) that I spent a good hour and a half in floods of tears writing!

It tells the story of two incredibly damaged wolves struggling between their awful involvement in the war raging between the two halves of the paranormal world and their home life, where they can’t quite feel normal.

Dax is a moody, broody male who hates everyone bar Alison, but feels he is too damaged to be good enough for her.

Alison is a sweet, innocent female with a backbone of steel who endures more pain and torture than anyone else in the book, yet still manages to find the will to carry on.

The High Lord is an evil (Excuse my French) B**stard with his sights set on taking over and ruining the world and the afterlife as we know it.

Song of the Wolf is the second in the series, though you don’t need to read them in order to understand the story!

Silence of the Wolves (Book one) was my debut. And though I will always love that book for getting me going, it was the novel I found my feet as a writer on. When that was released, I had a number of wonderful reviews that really inspired me to make the absolute most out of my writing. That inspiration coupled with the damaged past I had already built up for Alison and Dax in my mind gave me the fuel I needed to create a truly powerful story line.

This is not a book for the weak stomached, it is a bit brutal but has a wonderfully sweet undercurrent that I loved writing.

Why wolves?

I love wolves, they amaze me. They are beautiful creatures filled with grace and skill that not many can match…

It also may have had something to do with the fact that about the time I started writing the first book in the series we’d just rescued our husky boy, Orbit. I love him, he’s a bug fluffy cutie!

Who is your favourite character from Song of the Wolf?

Julian, the pack Alpha. He is not a main character (yet) but he is the life and soul of the pack. He is the backbone of the story and I just can’t wait to write about him!!

Otherwise, the Djinn, Jake and Jones are fun to write about! They are such drama queens!!

Okay, so now some 'literary' questions... :)

Name your favourite book.

Oh god! As in one favourite?? Only one?? I think currently Divine by Mistake by P.C Cast. I read that thing in one day (and it’s a big book!) and loved every second of it! Although my favourite author is Keri Arthur and her Riley Jenson series. Cracking!

What genre would you never write and why?

Erm, futuristic I guess. I mean I suppose that would come under science fiction, but technically so does fantasy and I LOVE writing fantasy!

I’m good at magic, historical settings and the like, although all of my books are set in modern day… But writing about something in the future, and by that I mean like waaaaaay in the future with cars that fly and funky metal buildings etc. isn’t my thing. I think I would just make a bit of a tit of myself if I tried!

What genre would you never read and why?

There isn’t much I wouldn’t read, I love a good story, no matter the context! I’m not good with factual books (historical texts aside), biographies and such, I’d rather dip into someone’s extraordinary imagination rather than their life.

And finally some random questions :)

Are you a cat or a dog person?

Dogs, no doubt! I love them! Have a Husky and a Jack Russell at home!!

What's the nuttiest thing you'd do for £1M?

Erm, I have no idea!! There isn’t much I wouldn’t do! Jump out of a plane in a clown suit? Done! Swim the English Channel? Hand me that swimsuit!

Streaking through London? Turn your camera off, I’m running!

Basically anything that wouldn’t destroy my sense of self worth I suppose, that money would buy me and my dogs a cracking bit of land and the means to open a rescue center!

Can you keep a secret? ;P

Sssh, I can’t tell you…
Can you?

Thanks so very much wonderful beans for having me! So much love to you all! If you want to check out the book, I always love knowing what you think, so you’re all more than welcome to get in touch any time!
I hope you like what you read!!

Write on!!


Thanks Hannah - and now for a little more detail about Hannah and her books!

I am a born and bred wild child. (Or I like to think so anyway!)

I moved to sunny Folkestone to escape and find my feet as, well whatever I was destined to be! But alas, my short attention span made finding that destiny a little difficult! One day I came across a diary entry that made me laugh so hard; I actually fell off my chair. (Yes, this can happen!)
I decided that the entry was so funny; it needed to be shared with the world! So I started writing, and attempted to turn it into a novel. Though to this day, that novel remains unfinished, it will always be the novel that got me started, and showed me what I was passionate about. Honestly? I have aspired to be everything from a Private Investigator to a Zoo Keeper with my career; my interests change so quickly that I could never stick with one! Writing gives me the freedom to choose; I can be a cold-hearted assassin in love with a poet one day and the secret lesbian lover of a politician the next!
All my life, I have had a strong, unwavering passion for anything supernatural, spiritual and slightly unexplainable, I love the idea that there can be something completely fantastical lurking beneath the confines of normality. So of course, mythical creatures of all shapes and sizes dominate most of my work!
In a nutshell, I am a creative crazy bean, living with my lovely husband and a house full of too many animals! I’ve always secretly wished I were a werewolf of some description, but have come to realise that I will have to settle for writing about them instead! I’m happiest in the sun with my head in a good book!

Website –
Publisher website -
Facebook -
Twitter - @hannahapole -
Goodreads -


In the depths of England, a Kingdom lurks beneath the confines of normality. 

A hierarchy of supernaturals run by the strict council fight daily to keep their world a secret from the humans that appear to rule the world. With the Councils structure changing and the Kingdom struggling to keep up, the rest of the community must keep their heads down and do their duty. Or face the ultimate penalty. 
Shifters and Vampires have the hardest task of them all, fighting in the war against the Circle, a deadly band of rebels, practicing blood magic and capturing souls in their wake. With the new high lord in control, life has never been more dangerous.
A day will come little wolf when you must decide which evil you fight for.

Alison Jenkins has been born and bred into one of the Councils leading front line packs. She’s had a life of glitz and glamour and has loved every second of it.
That was of course until the deadly circle kidnapped her… and bound her soul against her will.
Now she faces a fate worse than death, with her body rotting and her soul held captive she faces the gravest of choices, give up her afterlife to save this one?
Or die early and let her soul walk the grey plane alone for the rest of eternity.

When Dax, the White Wolf packs resident moody genius finds out Alison has been kidnapped he gives up everything he has to find her, nearly killing himself in the process. He is a lone wolf by nature and when he finds himself falling in love with a female who not only is the sister of his Alpha, but seems to be slowing dying with no hope of salvation, he finds himself changing the very fiber of himself and his morals. Dax will use every available resource to try and help her, even if it means asking a favour with the very darkest creatures of the night.
Is death truly the only way to save her?

Song of the Wolf is out on the 26th November 2013

It is the second book in the Call of the Wilderness series, though you don’t necessarily need to read them in order! 


Silence of the Wolves (Book 1 Song of the Wilderness)

Fate is calling…

After a strange encounter in a dark alley, journalist Tamriel’s life is turned upside down. She’s missing days, developing odd new abilities, and being followed by mysterious Leyth.
Dark, dangerous – and too gorgeous for his own good –Leyth’s determined to teach Tamriel about her new life – as a werewolf! And just as intent on keeping their relationship strictly business.
But as their simmering bond grows, Tamriel and Leyth face a bigger challenge; Tam may be their kind’s strongest weapon against the Circle, a deadly group of paranormal creatures gone rogue. That is, if she’s ready to give into her destiny and put up the fight of her life...

Silence of the Wolves is currently on a promotional sale to celebrate the upcoming launch of Song of the Wolf!  UK- 59p!! US – 95c!!

Monday, 25 November 2013

NaNoWriMo - I've passed the 50K Goal Posts :D

Yay, I crawled over the finish line, I have called a halt at 50,102 words!
I haven't finished the story yet, I have another 40K at least to go, but I need to stop NaNo and concentrate on a bunch of short ghost stories that I have to finish for Christmas. I'll be back writing dragons in January :).

Sunday, 17 November 2013

NaNo Procrastination and Style Analysis

Well, I had a few days this week where I got stuck on my NaNoWriMo work and, procrastination being what it is, I ended up having some fun with the 'I Write Like' website. I took all my stories from Myriad Imaginings, the anthology we created from our Wittegen Press Giveaway Games, 31 days of short stories, which we ran in 2012, and stuck them through the analysis engine.  The idea is that the engine tells you which famous writer your work resembles. And, erm, well, I can't say I'm convinced, but this is what came out the other end.

Incubus Shadows
This is the first story in the anthology. It's erotic romance and it's explicit. Apparently that means I write like James Joyce. I'm wondering if the algorithm picks this if all the other matches fail :)

I write like
James Joyce
I Write Like. Analyze your writing!

Samling Born
This one's about werewolves, contemporary werewolves in a rock band, which doesn't strike me as Arthur C Clarke material, but, hey ho! ;P

I write like
Arthur Clarke
I Write Like. Analyze your writing!

The Name's The Game
I have to say I've never read any Margaret Atwood, so I can't say if a vampire hostage situation is anything like her stuff, although I suppose since it is set post World War III then the content could have influenced the algorithm.

I write like
Margaret Atwood
I Write Like. Analyze your writing!

The Gift
This one's high fantasy: wizards, dragons and spells. I have absolutely no idea if it matches with the analysis.

I write like
Cory Doctorow
I Write Like. Analyze your writing!

So Undercover is all about a cop, a strip club and a double cross, so, yeah, when Raymond Chandler came up, I wasn't surprised. Somehow, though, I don't think Raymond wrote explicit erotic m/m fiction!

I write like
Raymond Chandler
I Write Like. Analyze your writing!

Cyberpunk, really? This story is horror, possessed dolls and nasty school girls.

I write like
William Gibson
I Write Like. Analyze your writing!

The End Of The Journey
I have to say I was shocked by this. Dan Brown, really?! Content again, methinks, although this is word matching, because my demons and secret societies fighting each other have nothing to do with Literati and I don't mention the Roman Catholic church once. :P

I write like
Dan Brown
I Write Like. Analyze your writing!

Just One Day
Floored, absolutely floored. I cannot put this down to content, because I don't remember J.K writing about haunted houses that drive people mad on only one night of the year. Can't see the pattern in this one :).

I write like
J. K. Rowling
I Write Like. Analyze your writing!

Girl In The Mirror
Being a big Neil Gaiman fan, I had to clap at this one, however dodgy the algorithm doing the matching :). This is first person paranormal adventure with a side order of weird fatalism, so content again.

I write like
Neil Gaiman
I Write Like. Analyze your writing!

A Special Catch
My second hit for Cory. Sci-Fi erotic romance, at the opposite end of the spectrum to The Gift.

I write like
Cory Doctorow
I Write Like. Analyze your writing!

Song For A Sovereign
I laughed my arse off at this match. Not because it's my second J.K. Rowling match, but because this is a spin-off story from a set of stories I'm working on that started life as a Harry Potter fanfic :D. Admittedly, this is high fantasy, a flash into the history of the world I am building, so I can only put the match down to magic and a central character with a destiny (although I'd liken the content, not style, more to a David Eddings than a J.K Rowling).

I write like
J. K. Rowling
I Write Like. Analyze your writing!

Queen of My World
Psychological horror with a side of monster at the end - ol' Isaac. eh! It is a very clipped, brief style.

I write like
Isaac Asimov
I Write Like. Analyze your writing!

All In The Mind
Hit #3 for J.K., and this one is sci-fi, telepathy and robots, so I can't work out what the match would be with the content.

I write like
J. K. Rowling
I Write Like. Analyze your writing!

A New Path
Well, this is a sequel to The End of The Journey, so it should have been Dan Brown if I was being consistent with my style, so, woe is me, I'm an inconsistent author!

I write like
Stephen King
I Write Like. Analyze your writing!

So, according to the 'I Write Like' analyser, I'm a Rowlingesque Doctorow with a side order of Joycian Clarke and a Gaiman-like Kingly vision and just a touch of Asimovian Atwood-Chandler-Gibson-Brown. Nothing like a having a split writing personality! ;P Somehow, I won't be taking this too seriously, but it was a fun waste of an hour.

Thursday, 14 November 2013

Guest Post: How An Idea Became An *idea* by Author Daniel Sherrier (plus RIP vol. 1: Choices After Death eBook Competition)

Today, I'd like to welcome author Daniel Sherrier to my blog. He's going to be talking about his new book, RIP vol. 1: Choices After Death and about how he generated his ideas. So, without further ado, over to Daniel!


How an idea became an *idea*

Thanks for letting me stop by your blog, Sophie! I appreciate the opportunity to discuss my new release, RIP vol. 1: Choices After Death.

I had a weird idea about ghosts a few years ago. I thought, “Hmm, what if someone could interact physically with ghosts as if they were flesh and blood? And maybe that person is the only one capable of touching ghosts, and they can touch this person back. That would be all kinds of messed up.”

I agreed with myself in the middle of that sleepless night. That would be messed up. I pictured some flustered person engaging in fist-fights with ghosts that were invisible to everyone else. So much potential for fun. But where was the potential for depth?

Then I thought of Serissa, and everything fell into place.

Specifically, I thought of this scene:

Rip leaned against another tree and slid into a sitting position. He noticed the grass sticking through Serissa’s bare feet. “So I have to decide, basically, the course of my life from here on out—assuming, of course, I’m not simply losing my mind.” 
Serissa stood her ground, summoning Rip with her finger. “Give me your hand.” 
Rip climbed to his feet and stepped forward, hesitant. He reached out, unsure what to expect from a dead, intangible girl. 
Nor did the dead, intangible girl know what to expect. She had no idea if this would work, but her lips curled up in the anticipation that it might. Serissa slowly interlocked her fingers with his, and they both squeezed. 
Contact. Solid contact. 
“You’re warm,” Rip said, feeling a soft human hand, indistinguishable from any living person’s. 
“Only to you,” Serissa said, smiling at her first physical sensation since…in a long time.

Then I knew I had a series. Admittedly, at first I thought I had a television series, but I knew I had something.

I pictured this recently deceased young woman, this sociable woman who had become isolated in death, and I pictured her touching someone for the first time since dying—nothing sexual, not even romantic, just a simple holding of hands, a special sort of friendly intimacy.

Then I thought, “This must happen.”

Everything snowballed from there. I developed this world in which all ghosts are people who aren’t quite ready for Heaven or Hell yet. They weren’t too good or too bad in their lives, and now they have to choose whether to work toward Heaven or settle on waiting for Hell to claim them. The catch is that they don’t know for sure these places even exist. They might spend their afterlives on their absolute best behavior, working super-hard to help people, and it might be for nothing.

This is Serissa’s dilemma, and it drives her bonkers. It sure is hard to hold onto anything when you’re an intangible ghost.

She’s one of my favorite characters to write. It’s between her and Amena or Sela from my sci-fi series, Earths in Space. For me, Serissa makes the book, and I consider the story about her as much as it’s about Rip, kind of like how Mary Poppins is also about Mr. Banks.

RIP vol. 1: Choices After Death would be nothing without Serissa.

RIP vol. 1: Choices After Death

Ghosts are people, too, but not all ghosts choose to be good people.

Rip Cooper must overcome his fears and kill dead people to prevent them from corrupting the living. This young loner learns he can perceive ghosts with his five senses as if they were flesh and blood, and he’s just as solid to them — pretty much the only solid thing, in fact. He works alongside an impure “angel” and his ex-best friend’s ex-girlfriend as they teach him how love can lead to strength.

RIP vol. 1: Choices After Death features the first four novelettes in this coming-of-age and redemption story: “Touch,” “Alone,” “The Crazy Line,” and “Point B,” plus the short story “Strength.”

The e-book is available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Apple, Diesel, and Smashwords.

And coming soon…RIP will be in print!


For a chance at winning a digital copy, please enter this giveaway, which runs Nov. 14 through Nov. 18:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

About Daniel

Daniel Sherrier is a writer based in central Virginia. This is the guy who writes the Earths in Space and RIP series, which you've doubtless heard much about. Occasionally, a play he's written gets performed somewhere. He graduated from the College of William & Mary in 2005, where he earned a degree in the ever-lucrative fields of English and Theatre. Recently, he achieved his black belt in Thai kickboxing. And there was that one time he jumped out of an airplane, which was memorable.

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

NaNoWriMo Day 12 and the end of the easy ride for me :)

So, it's day 12 and I'm happy with my total so far, 35K, but from here on in, it's gonna get tougher for me for one simple reason, I'm coming to the end of the plot for the novella that this novel is based on. Despite it being a complete rewrite, having that foundation underneath has meant I haven't had any of my normal struggles with direction, well mostly: there have been a couple where I've ripped up the whole scene are started again, because I wasn't happy with the tone, but I knew where the plot had to go, because I don't want to disappoint those who have read the novella by doing something completely different. The point is to build on that story, not rip it apart.

It has been interesting reworking the novella, because I had to slip some extra ideas into the scenes that made up the original, which sometimes have meant a slight emphasis shift in the whole scene. And in yet others, despite me trying to use the original as a guide only and not relying on the old text, have come out surprisingly similar, to the point where I've found whole turns of phrases that have appeared in both scenes when I've compared them. That tells me my writing style hasn't changed that much in the two years since I wrote it. I hope it is getting tighter with the practice I'm putting in with FB3X Drabble Cascades, but my basic sense of expression is still very much me. :)

Another thing that has become apparent during the reworking is that writing a novel has a very different feel to a novella. I thought I'd do a little comparison between the length of the novella and the new novel so far, and, considering they cover the same plot, there is a 15K difference in length. I can only put this down to the bits that I could leave out of the novella for pace and the fact it was a short format. To get the character feel right for the novel, the scenes have extended and the pace is not quite so fast. I don't think I've put in anything that is unnecessary (although the rereading of the first draft once it is complete may lead to chunks being erased, I can be a vicious editor ;P), the whole thing just needed a bit more depth. I've given the empaths, Yakov and Malachi more of a back story, because that's important for later in the plot, and dropped in a few snippets about my main character, Drekken, as well, again, seeding the rest of the story, but it's not just the additions that have lengthened the piece.

So, onwards into new territory. I have notes and plot plans for the rest of the book, but no more crutches of being able to go and reread the old text to kick my imagination into gear. I'm off exploring :).

I hope other NaNoers are having as much fun as I am. Keep it up folks!

Tuesday, 5 November 2013

Well it's NaNoWriMo Day 5 already - I think I'm slipping into the groove!

Today is a project management day, so I'll have to wait to be able to write, but I did manage nearly 1600 words yesterday (which was another PM day) I was only 100 short, so I hope I'll be able to do the same this evening.

The novel I've chosen to write is a rewrite and then an extension of a novella that has proved to be my most popular download (admittedly, it's free), so the first few days were fairly easy, because I had a very firm idea in my head from the original story that just had to be worked on. Sunday and yesterday, I began work on extra scenes that weren't in the original, pieces of character development that I could get away with leaving out in a shorter work, but that need to go in the prepare the way for the novel. And boy did Sunday show me I wasn't in the full writing groove yet.

I got stuck at just 700 words on Sunday, one short scene that I wasn't even happy with then. However, I woke up yesterday with a better idea of what I wanted to achieve in the intermediate scenes and that really helped, because I knew what the hook was, where I was going and, even working a full day, I managed to almost make my quota. So, I am slowly slipping into the groove of the story again, beginning to understand my characters and know where I want to take them.

I'm happier now, because I know I'm not just relying on the old prose to prop me up, I'm developing the story in a new way, and, although some of it is close to the original, it's being combined with new angles and ideas that will take the story beyond the novella.

So, now to work (and not writing, I'm afraid), but I have a new character and another additional scene to work on in my  head during any pauses in my day. I'm even considering shifting the timeline a day to slow the pace, but I'm not sure, it might not be necessary - only today's ruminations will tell!

Have fun with your stuff today fellow NaNoers!

Saturday, 2 November 2013

NaNoWriMo Day 2

Don't worry, I'm not going to blog every single day of NaNo, but day 2 deserves a mention, because, well, it's the day after the mad, wonderful, frustrating and hopefully for most people, productive first day.

Well, that's how it works for me anyway - I bashed out 4K words yesterday, a fair first draft for a battle scene that starts off the book. It's not perfect, I know that, there are bits where I'll have to polish, but that's for December, I'd say it's 80% there and as well as introducing a little drama, I think it gives first introduction to my major character, Drekken, the show, don't tell variety. I do have a lot of back story for Drekken, but there's an important pivot of knowledge later on in the story, so most of it is staying in my head for now, what the reader is supposed to get from the first scene is a look at the working of his mind, the warrior, the leader and the man.

4K may sound like a lot to some folks and a tiny amount to others, but I was happy with it, it meant I could stop in a sensible place for my brain to work on the next scene. It also means I have some word count in the bag for the days when I don't make it to 1600, and there will definitely be those!

Today, I woke up thinking about the plot of the book, well, to be fair, it was mixed in with thoughts about Thor: The Dark World, but I can't help it if Loki slips into my subconscious as well - made for quite an interesting dream actually ;P. BUT I can't tackle it first thing this morning, because I have RL to get on with - it's Saturday, so I have to take my mum shopping (she doesn't drive and she wants to start Christmas Shopping), so that means I will have to wait until after lunch to start my stint for today. It's not all bad, though, I do have some stuff to work out before I start writing the next scene and I get some of my best ideas from behind the steering wheel!

Enjoy day 2, NaNoers! See you on the other side.

Friday, 1 November 2013

Ready, Steady, NaNo!


I've got my outline, my wordcount spreadsheet and my brain in gear, so here I go! :)

Good luck to all the other NaNoWriMoers - dig in, and here's to 50,000 words in 30 days!