Author Spotlight – Anna Applegate

Introducing Anna Applegate

Anna Applegate is a paranormal romance and urban fantasy author. Her debut trilogy, The Ariya Adams Trilogy, is available now. She started out as an avid reader who kept finding that she wanted an extra scene, or alternate ending in the books she was reading. After being challenged to try to write her own story, the words poured out of her and she has pursued writing ever since.

Anna loves reading, romance of ALL kinds, sappy chick flicks, paranormal literature, shooting stars, Disney, nerdy fandoms and having an imagination.

Why don’t you begin by sharing a little about yourself.

So, hello! 🙂 My name is Anna Applegate. I live in rural Pennsylvania with my husband and four incredible kiddos. When I’m not writing, I’m a marketing assistant and meeting/conference planner. I’d love to someday be able pursue writing full time. I have a coffee addiction that I refuse to try to break and enjoy thinking that I can actually sing during my commute to and from work each day.

I’ve loved reading my whole life and I’ve always had an active imagination. I’m a big fan of happy endings in the books I read, which makes me a sucker for any kind of romances — paranormal, historical, time travel, fantasy, etc. But I do love other genres as well! I’m a big fan of people doing what they are passionate about and dreaming big so that is what this writing journey has been about for me.

Could you tell us a bit about your latest book?

My latest book was Sacrificed (Book 3 in the Ariya Adams Trilogy). It was released this past December (2017). The Ariya Adams Trilogy was my first debut into the writing world. I started back in 2012 and published Protected (Book 1 in the Ariya Adams Trilogy) and Awakened (Book 2 in the Ariya Adams Trilogy) back in 2013. I went on an unplanned writing hiatus and desperately missed it.

I finally got around to finishing Sacrificed last year and was so excited to get it out to everyone! I had some wonderful people reaching out and checking on the progress, even after that 4 year gap! So it felt wonderful to finally get that out.

I was definitely sad to say goodbye to Ariya and the gang from the series. They were the first characters I really wrote, and they’ll always have a special place in my heart. Ariya Adams is a college aged student, in her final year at Kingsbrook College. She learns quickly that her life is not at all as normal as she thought it was. The trilogy is a paranormal romance / urban fantasy mix, but I also have suspense and some mystery in there. One day I would love to write a historical romance, and I was able to add in some modified history into the Ariya Adams Trilogy with information about a bloodline of Protectors. Protectors are a group of vampires, and you can learn all about who they are, what they do and their history in the trilogy!

The trilogy has a variety of paranormal creatures in it including vampires, werewolves and warlocks. The series takes place in a few different locations, the school where our main characters attend, Germany, Colorado and a few others. There’s daring escapes, kidnappings, romance, mysteries, suspense and big bads that you love to hate! Plus, the trilogy is full released now and available on Amazon and it’s a part of the Kindle Unlimited Program!

Who is your intended readership?

I’ve noticed a wide range of ages and backgrounds in my readers lately, which has been incredibly fascinating to me. I feel like I write the books that I want to read. I’m in my early thirties and a Mom, so I enjoy escaping to another world sometimes. My books are written with characters who are college aged and older. I’ve noticed that there is a definite increase in my readers who are 35-50. So I feel like I write for other people who like to get away into the pages of a book — whether it’s getting away from job stress, kiddie stress, whatever stress. I feel like while the sexual content is mild in this upcoming book, there is some violence (not intense, and not very graphic).

In my previous trilogy, The Ariya Adams Trilogy, there was sexual content and violence, so I’d say that trilogy would be for 18+.

When did you realize you wanted to be a writer?

I had taken a Creative Writing elective in High School and I loved every minute of it. I had such an easy time with assignments, at least the ones where we got to write fiction! So I always enjoyed writing. I never thought in a million years I’d have my work out there, or write a book for that matter.

I had graduated college and was working for a wonderful company with a few other women my age. We all had similar reading tastes and devoured books. I was reading 2 books a week, and that was on a slow week for me! I just couldn’t read enough. I was starting to sound like a broken record with my friends at work, telling them — well what if this had happened? Or I wish they would have explored this part more. Finally, one day one of my friends said, well if you think you can do better, try it! We all laughed, and I went home that night and thought about it. I did NOT think I could do better by any means, but I thought to myself that it might be fun to try to write.

Before I knew it, I had 60,000 words of a book. I felt a spark I had never felt before inside of me and suddenly, all I wanted to do was think about my story and find out where it was going (remember, earlier I let you in on my secret that for my first 3 books, I had NO PLAN! haha). I had started reading an H.P. Mallory Book, Fire Burn and Cauldron Bubble (Book 1 in the Jolie Wilkins Series). In the back I saw a note that she was an Indie Author / Self Published. I had no idea what that meant and I looked into it. She had written a Self Publish Guide, which I bought and suddenly the Indie Author world was opened before my eyes! I hopped into a Facebook Group, met my two writing sisters who provide critiques and motivation for me and have become dear friends, and I haven’t looked back! I had a bit of a hiatus during my trilogy (well, longer than a bit, but life got crazy). But now, I’m back to writing and excited to be pursuing my passion again.

Do you have a favorite author, or writing inspiration?

It’s so hard for my to pick favorite authors. Being a part of B2BCYCON this year, I saw so many Fantasy works. It reminded me of my childhood. Growing up, my parents read me books like The Hobbit. My childhood fear wasn’t monsters under my bed, it was Gollum. I was terrified, and still to this day I get goosebumps hearing “My Precious.” I have always enjoyed reading, and I think it’s because my parents instilled that into me at a young age. As I got older, my Mom would read me the Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys mysteries, and when I started reading more on my own when I was older, I gravitated towards Agatha Christie novels. So fantasy, mystery, suspense, those books grabbed me and shaped what I loved to read. When the paranormal romance genre took off, I think really when I was in college I got into it the most, I loved everything about the genre and the books I was reading, because I felt like it was capturing everything I had loved mixed together in one genre! Some of my favorites in the genre I write would have to be Amy Bartol and H.P. Mallory. But really, in this age of self-publishing, I am constantly discovering new authors who grab my attention. This world is FILLED with talented people and I love that there are so many who are willing to share their stories with us. I am first and foremost a reader!

What advice would you give beginning writers?

I went through a really hard time in my life right as my second book in my trilogy was coming out. I had been on a roll when I first started. I was so excited about writing and discovering this entire new world I hadn’t known existed. But then life happened, like it so often does. I went through some very hard personal times, then went through some happy times, then became a Mom and that changed everything. Suddenly, I let my writing go altogether. People would ask me occasionally when the third book was coming out, but I had been so far removed from everything that I let doubt overtake me completely. I thought no one would care if I didn’t write it, that it didn’t matter. I had such bad writers block, I thought I was done. Plus, I kept using the excuse that I didn’t have time. But then I started talking to some small business women who broke everything down into simple facts. I had a woman ask me if I had enjoyed writing. YES! Had it made me happy? YES! Could I find 30 minutes a day to write, everyday? Uhhh…I hesitated. She made it even more simple … Was I willing to make writing a priority? I had to think about that. I needed something in my life again for me, and writing had given me such a wonderful outlet. I was able to meet new people, and connect with new friends and create whole new worlds in my mind. It is such an amazing feeling. So I said YES! And guess what? I may not have had 30 minutes a day to write at first, at least I didn’t think I did. But I could find 30 minutes 3 times a week. So I did that and soon enough, I was in the groove. I had created a habit out of writing, and I stuck with it. Even if I got 2,000 words out and had to delete all of it later, I was writing again. For me, I just need to get the words out onto paper. Then when I edit I can tweak and idea, erase stuff that was garbage and rewrite it. But if I can break past that initial barrier and just get the words down, it usually makes the rest of the process easier! And I DO have the time — that’s 1 less TV show, or setting my alarm a little bit early 3 days a week. Writing is my passion, and I needed to make it a priority again, schedule time for it like I was doing for everything else!

Do you have any amusing writing stories or anecdotes to share?

I wish I had something interesting to share here 🙂 I love a pretty boring “Mom” life, Tim 🙂 haha I’ll have to start thinking about how to spice things up haha!!

What do you like to do when you’re not writing? Any hobbies?

I’m a nerd at heart, so when I’m not writing, I’m probably binging on shows like Doctor Who, Timeless, or other Netflix / Hulu shows, or reading 🙂 I have four wonderful kids who keep me quite busy as well — two of them being twin toddlers, so the opportunity for hobbies was pretty much eliminated when they were born. I’m slowly working back up to having some again, i.e. writing. My other hobbies will have to start developing again as my kids continue to grow up!

What’s your next project? Any upcoming book secrets you care to reveal?

I just finished Book 1 of a Duology! It’s a paranormal romance / urban fantasy, with vampires and some other creatures that I can’t give away just yet. It also includes vampire hunters! Book 1 is titled “A Hunter Within.” I’m shooting for a July 2018 release, and will have more information on the specifics of that date in the next few weeks. Right now the first draft is done and I’m working through edits with my beta readers and writing sisters. The book will be officially off to my editor on June 8th!

I loved writing this one. It by far was the quickest I’ve written a book. I started this past January and the first draft was completed and sitting at around 80,000 words by the last week in March. I used an outline for the first time, and as much as fought writing that way, I may be hooked now! I previously wrote a paranormal romance trilogy, The Ariya Adams Trilogy. For that one I just sat down at my computer and typed away, no plan, nothing. For this book, I tried to approach it with a bit more organization, and it worked out as far as how quickly I could get words to paper. I did want it to be a stand alone book, however it morphed into two books as I wrote, and I didn’t want to fight it! So I’m really excited about this book and its release!

The main character is Jules Parker. She’s reserved, only keeping a few close friends, the main two we get to meet early on. She’s a bookworm in her last year of college studying to become a Research Scientist. We start the book off seeing her in an internship she’s worked hard to obtain at a prestigious company. The problem is, the company has some secrets that Jules discovers early on that make her wary. She lives with her Aunt and has since she was a child and her parents died in a car accident. There’s definitely some mystery around this one, I’d like to think some suspense, and then of course romance and lots of paranormal!

Protected (Book 1 in the Ariya Adams Trilogy)

Protected-ebookShe thinks she’s a normal college Senior. He knows she’s anything but.

Ariya Adams has no idea she’s descended from blood so powerful and rare that her life is infinitely more precious than any ordinary woman’s—especially to James Rymer.

James enters her life and stirs up feelings she can’t explain. He becomes a part of her world almost overnight, but Ariya senses he’s hiding something, and she’s determined to figure out what it is.

When “normal” becomes a thing of the past and fantasy enters Ariya’s reality, she’s soon faced with dangerous revelations, the least of which is that everyone she loves has been keeping secrets from her. With a paranormal evil she’s only beginning to comprehend threatening her and her friends, Ariya will have to choose between duty and love. Through it all, she’ll learn to never underestimate the power of blood.

Read the series fans are calling “captivating,” “page-turning” and “not your typical vampire story.”

Buy Now: Paperback, E-Book

Awakened-ebook sharpenedSacrificed 4 ebook jpegThen continue to read the rest of the Trilogy with “Awakened” and “Sacrificed”

Author Page:

Amazon

Where to find Anna Applegate:

Website (AnnaApplegate.com), Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook

You can also reach out to Anna on her personal Facebook

I also have a Facebook Reader’s Group that I can interact with everyone a bit more personally than on my Facebook business page.

Join the Readers Group here

Signup for Anna’s Reading Nook (Newsletter)

Here I host exclusive contents, giveaways, updates on my writing and upcoming events AND each month I have a Reading Corner where I talk about my current reads and a book that’s on sale!

Right now I’m hosting an EXCLUSIVE Character Contest for people who are a part of my Newsletter Subscription list. The winner will have a character named after them in my upcoming novel.

The next Newsletter is going out April 24th and it will have the last chances to enter for that opportunity, with the contest closing on May 8th.

Signup Now!

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A 2017 Round-up 3 of 3 – A Year In The Spotlights

 

In This Post:

  • Books featured in “Book Spotlights” during 2017
  • Authors featured in “Author Spotlights” during 2017
  • Update on the reader survey

I know that this series started as a round-up of 2017 in two parts, but I realized there was so much that happened in 2017, that I really needed more posts…

(And yes, it might even go to 4 posts if individual posts get too long).

So without further ado, let’s take a look at the books and authors that have featured on “Ramblings of an Author” over the last twelve months.

Want Your Book Spotlighted?

Click Here To Fill Out The Form

J.N. Sheats

Heidi Angell 

Andy Peloquin

Connie Cockrell

Claire Plaisted

Rosemary Cawkwell

Stephanie Ayers

Renee Scattergood

Toi Thomas

A.L. Mabry

Patricia Josephine

Cassidy Taylor

Interested In Being In The Author Spotlight?

Click Here To Fill Out The Form

 

I’m Still Taking Views From Blog Readers

A 2017 Round-up 2 of 3 – The Year In Books

 

In This Post:

  • Statistics About My Reading Habits in 2017
  • Fiction Books I Read (and links to my reviews)
  • Non-Fiction Books I Read (and links to my reviews)
  • My Personal Book Releases, and feedback from readers

I know that this series started as a round-up of 2017 in two parts, but I realized there was so much that happened in 2017, that I really needed more posts…

(And yes, it might even go to 4 posts if individual posts get too long).

Target Number Of Books To Read: 25

Number Of Books Actually Read: 37 (28 Fiction, 9 Non-Fiction)

Number Of Pages Read: 7,982

Comment below – let’s see how we all did on our reading targets

5-Star Reviews

4-Star Reviews

3-Star Reviews

Comment Below With Any Fiction Recommendations

5-Star Reviews

4-Star Reviews

3-Star Reviews

Comment Below With Any Non-Fiction Recommendations

Evaline Transcendent

Format: Kindle E-Book

Link: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B073G9FPZ8

Released: July 26, 2017

Blurb: Evaline is the shipboard computer on the Miranda Two, a colony ship destined for the planet Karman-III-Delta. She is possibly Earth’s last hope of establishing a working off-world colony. However, her predecessor stopped reporting home, so now she and the colonists must establish what happened to the previous colony.
The Miranda Two has been traveling for twenty years, and now it’s time for Evaline to wake the crew and colonists in preparation or arrival at their destination. Can Evaline and the crew figure out what happened to the Miranda One expedition, and what price will they have to pay for the answers?

Note From the Author: This is the second release of “Evaline Transcendent”, which originally appeared in the “Across the Karman Line” anthology. Since that release, I have revisited the story and expanded on some aspects, and rewritten others. At its core, this is exactly the same story but reimagined for a wide audience.

Originally standing at around 8,500 words, this new release boasts a word count of closer to 14,000. I hope that those of you who have read the original story will discover new aspects to it when reading this version. For those coming to it for the first time, enjoy!

Reviews: 

Love reading! Love reading many things but not science fiction… So it’s strange that I LOVED reading this!!! A short and wonderfully captivating story which REALLY should be made into a movie!!! You’ll see why yourselves – no spoilers here 😉 I’ve just downloaded his other book too YAY 😀

Book Dreams Volume #1 (Brain to Books Anthology)

Format: Kindle E-Book

Link: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B075VDXD64

Released: April, 2017

Blurb: Here, we present the talents of assorted artists. In this collection, you will find short stories, continuations, and poems that encompass the hidden treasures of today’s uprising authors. May their words influence you as much as they have influenced mine.

Authors Include: Ani H. Manjikian, Adam Dreece, W.J. Howard, Toi Thomas, Timothy Bateson, Laura McHale Holland, Ash Krafton, Sanzaki Kojika, Tyrean Martinson, C.T. Callahan, Natash Jackson, Maria Elena Alonso-Sierra, Jeanne Richards, Charlene Jones, Angela B. Chrysler

Book Spotlight – “Raven’s Gift” by Angel Lawson

Book Blurb

‘Twas five days before Christmas
and all through the Nead,
Not a Raven was ready,
to fulfill Morgan’s needs.

Morgan’s stockings were pulled,
tight over her legs,
In hopes that a guardian
Would soon kneel and beg.

Then to what to her
wondering eyes should appear,
but an idea of how the Ravens
could bring holiday cheer.

Each takes a day,
A tradition is set,
Morgan knows in an instant
that her desires will be met.

In thundering heartbeats,
and wandering hands,
Morgan’s Ravens attend to her eager demands.

Oh Dylan,
Ooh Clinton and hold tight, here comes Bunny
On Sam and with Damien
there’s time for everybody.

Let the countdown begin,
for some holiday cheer,
may Morgan and her Ravens
Have a Happy New Year.

Raven’s Gift is a Christmas Novella that is part of the Raven Queen’s Harem. Readers do not have to have read the series to enjoy this romp of holiday fun!

Buy Your Copy Now! E-Book

From the Author

Angel Lawson is a USA Today Bestselling Paranormal Romance author of adult and young adult fiction. She lives with her family in Atlanta and has a lifelong obsession with creating fiction from reality, either with paint or words. On a typical day you can find her writing, reading, plotting her escape from the zombie apocalypse and trying to get the glitter out from under her nails.

Angel’s most recent work is The Death Fields Series, a five book Post-Apocalyptic Thriller. She is the author of the Creature of Habit and The Wraith Series and The Lost Queen. Contemporary novels Serial Summer, FanGirl, and For the Win.

Where To Find Angel Lawson

Facebook, E-mail, Website, Newsletter (Angel Lawson’s Mailing List)

31 Days Of Halloween – Happy Halloween

It’s Halloween At Last!

And, yes, this post is going live 4 hours earlier than usual, and you’ll see why shortly…

This month has been an amazing ride, and I’ve loved being able to bring so many authors, books, and stories to you all. (Click here for a list of everything that’s happened this month).

This entire month was about celebrating the 3rd Anniversary of “Under A Hunter’s Moon” being in print. So, don’t forget to get your FREE copy of “Under A Hunter’s Moon (Shadows Over Seattle: Prequels #1)” before the end of the night.

After midnight on Halloween night, the price will go back up to it’s usual $0.99 (USD). If you’re unsure this is the story for you, there’s a preview of the story at the bottom of this post.

So 31 Days, 31 Posts? Challenge Accepted… And Defeated!

When I first challenged myself to do this event, 31 posts in 31 days looked like such a daunting challenge. And there were ups and downs along the way. I had some posts planned with authors, which for didn’t make it into the line up, for different reasons. But there was always someone willing to step up and fill the slot.

I may have had to rush to make sure some of the posts went out on the days I’d promised, but I wouldn’t change a thing. Everyone I’ve worked with has been amazing.

Here’s To All My Wonderful Contributors, And Readers

I want to put out a HUGE thank you to all the authors who took part, without whom I’d have been writing a blog post every day for an entire month… And I suspect I’d have failed miserably…

I’d also like to thank everyone who dropped in, took the time to comment on posts, share them, and click those like buttons. It means a lot to me that so many people came by and helped make this a blog event I’ll remember for a long time to come.

As a surprise to the contributing authors, I wanted to do something special, and this video is my way of showing my gratitude. I dug deep into author interviews, websites, blog posts and more to find some things about them that may people might not know…

So take a peek behind the scenes of the event, and learn a little about everyone who helped make this such a huge success.

And that’s a wrap…

But, I wouldn’t have even DARED to try something like this, if it wasn’t for you, my followers and readers. So, as a thank you, I decided to do something crazy… “Under A Hunter’s Moon” is STILL free, until MIDNIGHT TONIGHT!

Grab Your Copy NOW!

Want a preview of what to expect? Then check out the preview below… And if you like what you read, PLEASE leave a review, and tell your friends how much you enjoyed it.

https://bublish.com/bubble/stream/14467?embed=1

Book Spotlight – “Mating Two Dragons” by Ariel Marie

Book Blurb

Dragons must bond with their fated mates or risk the Dragon Curse…

The talons of the Dragon Curse are upon three dragon shifters who have scoured the Earth’s surface in search of their fated mates. Each dragon longs to find the other two-thirds of their heart. Only in a triad will a dragon shifter feel complete.

Serni, Raven, and Colton are desperate to find their mates because they know without a mate, their dragons will succumb to the Dragon Curse. It becomes a race against time for them to find each other.

Fate steps in at the Mating Ball, an event where shifters can come to seek out their mates. After centuries of failed searches, it looks like the dragons may have a chance after all. But will they find each other and complete their triad before the Dragon Curse claims them?

WARNING: This book contains material for mature readers (18+ and older) only. This book contains steamy MFF, bisexual ménage paranormal romance.

 

Buy Your Copy Now! E-Book

From the Author

Ariel Marie is an author who loves the paranormal, action and hot steamy romance. She combines all three in each and every one of her stories. For as long as she can remember, she has loved vampires, shifters and every creature you can think of. This even rolls over into her favorite movies! She love a good action packed thriller! Throw a touch of the supernatural world in it and she’s hooked!

She grew up in Cleveland, Ohio where she currently resides with her husband and three beautiful children.

Where To Find Ariel Marie

Twitter, Facebook, E-mail, Instagram, Website, Newsletter

Book Spotlight – “Envy (Protectors of the Elemental Magic Book 4)” by Marnie Cate

Book Blurb

My mother sold her soul to the Goddess of Winter, and mine along with it.

Camille was one of four girls who were given the gift of elemental magic. When her arrogance and greed led her to bad choices, she paid for it with her life… and her daughter, Blanche’s.

Blanche Kingston Drygen would never be admired for her sweetness. Lusted after for her beauty, and desired for her wealth, the townsfolk of Starten thought of her as a cold-hearted business woman. They did not know the secrets the most predominant family in town hid. The Drygens owned everything and almost everyone, except their own fates.

If you are hoping for a sweet, cozy tale, I’m afraid the Silvers have the market on fairytales. While they reveled in the gifts bestowed upon them by the Goddess Danu, the Drygen family fell victim to the cruel Winter Goddess, Snowystra.

Blanche’s story is one of lost love and tortured lives. Sit back as she tells you the reality of her gift, and how the Drygens were cursed to never love.

Buy Your Copy Now! E-Book

From the Author

Marnie Cate is a writer of coming of age and urban fantasy novels. Born in an Irish mining town in Montana, she always had a flair for the dramatic and a vivid imagination, and spent her childhood lost in the elaborate worlds she created with the help of her dolls.

One day Marnie Cate was struck by a powerful image in her mind. This seed created the world of Starten and the complicated world of goddesses and their touch on the mortal world.

Inspired by the actress Dame Judi Dench, she pursued her dream of sharing the stories that were brewing in her mind. With the urging of friends and family, she wrote in every spare moment she had.
After countless weekends spent at the local coffee shop typing away and people watching, Marnie finished her first novel, Remember: Protectors of the Elemental Magic. With the world of elemental magic and the humans they lived in released, the stories have just begun.

When not writing, Marnie enjoys reading, coffee and spending time with her family. She lives in Arizona.

Where To Find Marnie Cate

Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, Blog, Website