LIVE: The Replacement Fiance

My holiday novella went live at midnight and that’s one down for the Holiday Fiance series and two more to go before the year is over! Have you gotten your copy yet?

I also have a giveaway going on that’ll end at midnight for a signed copy of The Replacement Fiance and a $10 Amazon Gift Card here.

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AMAZON

THE REPLACEMENT FIANCE
(Mariah & Logan)

What happens when a charade between friends turns into the real thing?

After learning that her ex-fiancé will be spending the holidays next door to her parents’ home, the last thing florist Mariah Peters wants is for him to see that she’s still single two years after they called off their wedding. And so she comes up with the perfect lie… that she’s engaged.

Too bad the man she hired to pretend to be her fiancé is grounded on the other side of the country and can’t make it in time.

Enter friend Logan Garrison who volunteers to be the replacement fiancé. After all, that’s what friends are for, right?

But that’s before a practice kiss changes everything…

AMAZON

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New Release & Guest Blog Post: Reactance by Dacia M Arnold

Before anything else, I’d love to wish a Happy Book Birthday to Dacia M Arnold for her latest release, REACTANCE, the prequel novella to her upcoming novel APPARENT POWER! Don’t miss her guest post following the release announcement! Congratulations, Dacia!

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REACTANCE

by Dacia M Arnold

Genre: Young Adult Dystopian
Release Date: August 18, 2018

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Given a gift she never wanted, a young woman fights to find a place in post-apocalyptic Denver.

When a dormant gene awakens in a quarter of the world’s population, conductors of electricity are at the mercy of the DiaZem who rule over them.

After her father is killed in a thwarted plan to eradicate the population without the conductor gene, teenager Sasha Bowman channels her bitterness toward the woman she believes is responsible: The Queen DiaZem.

Keeping a journal to share with the world what really transpired, Sasha rallies the community to React against the Apparent Power.

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AVAILABLE ON

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About the Author

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Dacia Arnold is an author that struggles to find a balance of work, motherhood, marriage, writing, and the occasional craft. Her first full-length novel, Apparent Power, is in the works to be released December 2018. Dacia served 10 years in the U.S. Army as a combat medic and deployed twice to Iraq and often incorporates these experiences into her writings both fiction and non-fiction. She currently lives in Denver, Co with her husband, two children, and a fat beagle named Watson.

Social Media

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GUEST POST

I am so excited Liz Durano let me take over her blog for the day. My novella, REACTANCE just went on sale on Amazon and she wanted all of you to know about it. I have been a fan of Liz for a few years now and she has been extremely helpful to me and my career over those years. Thank you, Liz.

How fitting in the wake of Breaking the Rules, she would have me on her blog to talk a little about my personal military experience and the representation of such in literature. I served in the US Army, Active Duty for ten years. I deployed twice to Iraq in the medical field and witnessed both miracles and horrors of war. While my experience as a woman in the military differs from Sawyer’s, it is always important to remember women do serve and have served in the military for a long time.

Gender differences and representation in literature is not what I want to talk about though. I want to talk about my experience at war, PTSD, and losing dear friends.

I worked for fifteen months in the busiest trauma center in the world, Baghdad ER. Books were written and documentaries were filmed about Ibn Sina Hospital located in the Green Zone of Baghdad. I assisted in the birth of healthy babies and witnessed the death of young men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice to their country. I also fought for the lives of other men and women who felt they could no longer go on and decided to take their own lives. In the absence of understanding I was often angry when we would fail in our attempts to resuscitate my fellow brother or sister in arms.

We also treated children, criminals, terrorists, murderers. And we treated them all the same. A man, who was shot for creating an explosive which killed five Americans, received the same life-saving measures as a child who was considered collateral damage and was injured for being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

I saw a lot. I let for Iraq at 23 and returned home when I was 25. I left far more than a birthday and year worth of holidays in that marble clad medical facility. I left nearly every memory I had and held onto the feelings of comradery, the twisted sense of humor one often finds in an emergency room, and pride in the work we did and care we provided. When our mission was done, our emergency room held a 98% survival rate. If you made it to the Combat Support Hospital, your chances of living to see your family again were pretty good. We still managed to lose so many.

All of this happened over a decade ago. I am older, have kids, and left the military when my contract ended four years ago. I do not have post-traumatic stress disorder. This simply means when these memories come back and affect me negatively, I am able to successfully find a coping mechanism to file the memories back in my mind. An inability to do so does not make a person weak. There was a time where I drank too much, cried a lot, and felt guilty about those lives lost in my care. I am, after all, still a human being.

My second deployment to Iraq, I was asked to manage the outpatient clinic (a position multiple levels above my pay grade) while my peers were shift leaders in the emergency room. They wanted the guts and glory. I had seen enough gore by then and was happy to have my quiet predictable corner of the hospital. On Christmas morning (was Christmas night in Iraq), my best friend back home was murdered by her boyfriend with her six children in the home. Because she was not family, I was not granted the opportunity to go home to pay my respects or offer assistance to her children. She was also a veteran. Her boyfriend was still in the military at the time. He was sentenced to a mere fifteen years of prison because he was clinically diagnosed with PTSD. He’s halfway done with his sentence already.

All of these experiences bleed into my writing. Articulating the feelings of loss, pain, guilt, the emptiness one experiences when someone they love is no longer there helps me in filing those hard memories in my mind. It helps me make sense of situations and the grieving process. Everyone has a “fight or flight” reflex and it never occurred to me that flight was an appropriate road to take in such matters.

As a mother, my knowledge of terrorism, guns, and survival are always thoughts running in the background of my mind. I was working in a major hospital when someone called in a bomb threat. Patients and staff alike were notified. Many patients wanted to leave against medical advice. After we received the all clear, some of the nurses, knowing my background, asked me what I would have done. I simply said, “I really just depended on what happened, but either way, I’m going home tonight.” While I knew I had no control over the situation, I needed to maintain the confidence of my ability to fight.

I often call my time in the military “the best worst time of my life” I do not regret joining, serving, deploying OR getting out after ten years. Every experience added a layer of clay to my skeleton and molded who I am today. It gives depth to my writing and a strength I know even the most likely of characters can muster.

And with that, I present my novella, REACTANCE.

Reactance is written in the form of a journal. The story runs the timeline of my novel, Apparent Power, and the sequel, Shifting Power. Though Reactance is meant to be a teaser to the main DiaZem Trilogy, readers can either pick it up while they wait until Apparent Power is released in December 2018 OR they can read it between books 1 and 2. Either way it wets your pallet for the dystopian world I have made.

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Breaking the Rules is LIVE!

Alma and Sawyer’s story is finally live and I hope you got yourself a copy. There is a little bit of faux pas on my part for Barnes & Noble and Kobo. Somehow I missed the deadline to upload last week and the aggregator automatically set the preorder on 6/26. So I’m off to fix that little problem but probably not until morning when someone can actually answer my email…

In the meantime, you can get your copy from Amazon and iBooks.

Get Your Copy

 

Crack Open A Window

 

EXCERPT

From Barstow, we make our way to Flagstaff. I sit in the back seat next to Tyler, entertaining him with the toys I’ve brought along with me. Sometimes I catch Sawyer watching us in the rearview mirror. Sometimes he catches me watching him.

It’s a harmless game between us and I’m grateful for the distraction. I’ve never met any of Sawyer’s girlfriends before but I’ve seen pictures of them, or at least, one of them, a petite woman with a pixie haircut who Drew told me was a massage therapist and yoga instructor. I vaguely remember Drew saying that she was the reason Sawyer spent a lot of time in Sedona although that was a few years ago. The only thing I know about Sawyer’s love life so far these days is that he doesn’t wear a ring.

“You sure you don’t want me to take over driving?” I ask when I catch him looking at me again.

“Nah, I’m good. Take a nap if you want, Al. I got this,” he replies as I lean back in my seat. “You don’t mind country music, do you?”

So far, our playlist has included Phish and the Dave Matthews Band. No country music—yet. “I’d never have figured you for a country music fan, Sawyer.”

“I’m cycling through all the songs on my phone so I think country is next. I don’t think Tyler would appreciate heavy metal.”

I laugh, shaking my head. “I know I won’t, not with him in the car, but country’s fine.”

Sawyer grins. “Country it is then.”

By the time Kip Moore’s Bittersweet Company plays on the radio, Tyler is fast asleep. I prop one of the neck pillows I brought with me against the window and close my eyes. With nothing to look at but barren landscape and cars and trucks zipping past, I might as well join Tyler in his nap.

When I wake up, Tyler is wide awake and kicking happily on one of the stuffed animals by his feet. Sawyer looks at me through the rearview mirror before focusing his attention back on the road ahead.

“Are we there yet?” I stretch my neck, my body starting to get sore from all the sitting.

“Almost. About ten minutes.”

“Oh, good.” I look at Tyler who seems so content in his car seat before I realize why. He’s busy concentrating. “Uh-oh! I think Ty just went number two.”

“Eight minutes,” Sawyer says as he hits the gas. “You may need to crack open a window.”


PREORDER

Amazon US https://amzn.to/2JFoRF0
Amazon UK https://amzn.to/2l6RFM4
Amazon CA https://amzn.to/2JBd66r
iBooks https://apple.co/2l3n6a2
Barnes & Noble http://bit.ly/2HIa5LZ
Kobo http://bit.ly/2JwDrTc

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Getting Ready for the Weekend: New Releases and Sales

There are quite a few awesome deals going on this weekend and I want to share them with you. First up is Michelle Jo Quinn’s contemporary romance, When He Falls, which is 99¢ for a limited time on all retailers.

IBOOKS | AMAZON | NOOK | KOBO

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I just snagged me Coming in Hot: Rescue Me, a sizzling hot medical romance box set which is currently 99¢ during release week. I definitely need more gorgeous doctors in my life, even the shifter kind!

You can grab this set of 16 books from the following retailers:

IBOOKS | AMAZON | NOOK | KOBO

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And then there’s Hot Boy, a sizzling hot fireman in this rom-com by Cassie-Ann L. Miller which just launched this week at 99¢ or free in Kindle Unlimited:

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What are you reading this weekend?

Sunday Pick: Challenge Accepted by Amanda Abram

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WordPress just informed me that this month marks my five year anniversary since I started blogging. That’s when I moved my original blogs from another platform to WordPress and I haven’t looked back. I love the community that WordPress fosters and I enjoy discovering new bloggers every day. What’s even more fun is that if they happen to be writers, I get to learn about their stories and their books!

One author I just discovered is Amanda Abram. I added her latest release, Challenge Accepted, to my Kindle Unlimited library last night and this morning I started reading it. It’s been a long time since I’ve read YA but I love Amanda’s writing style. The story (at 28%, so far) is smart, tight, and well-written, reminding me of Sixteen Candles, Some Kind of Wonderful, and basically, all John Hughes movies. It definitely is bringing out all the feels… and the smiles.

And when you find yourself yelling at your Kindle for something the hero does that’s just oh-so-irredeemable, you know you just got sucked right into a charming and witty story. So if you’re in the mood to read a smart YA enemies-to-lovers romance (wait, can you use lovers in YA?), then it’s high time to check out Challenge Accepted by Amanda Abrams.

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CHALLENGE ACCEPTED
by Amanda Abram

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When the popular boy-next-door botches book nerd Emma’s chance at finding her perfect match, he’s going to help her find him

But what if they already are perfect for each other?

Emma Dawson thinks her neighbor, Logan Reynolds, is a callous jerk who thinks only of himself. He thinks she’s a stuck-up goody-two-shoes with no life.

But when Logan lies on the school’s Summer Fling Compatibility Test to get out of a casual dating situation, the program concludes that he and Emma are a perfect match.

To make it up to Emma for ruining her chances with the perfect guy, Logan decides to help her win the heart of her lifelong crush, his best friend, Matt.

But as the summer heats up, they’re suddenly faced with the biggest challenge of all—falling for each other.

EXCERPT

“I’ve been giving it a lot of thought since yesterday and I’ve come up with a few ideas.”

“Like what?”

“Like, for starters, we have got to do something about your wardrobe.”

I glanced down at myself. I was wearing a pair of flare jeans and a gray t-shirt that said, “BOOK NERD”, where every straight vertical line of each letter was the spine of a book. I thought it was clever. “What’s wrong with my wardrobe?”

“Honestly, nothing…if you weren’t trying to attract the attention of Matt Fisher. Which, by the way, is confusing to me. What about him makes you so hot and bothered? It can’t just be his good looks because I’m good-looking too and you hate me.”

Start reading Challenge Accepted by Amanda Abram

 

Falling for Jordan is LIVE!

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FALLING FOR JORDAN, the second book in a Different Kind of Love series that began with Dax and Harlow’s story in Everything She Ever Wanted, is officially live. I’m so grateful for all the people who have helped beta-read, edit, and proofread this book, and to the many ARC readers who had way sharper eyes than I did after I thought everything was said and done.

This is my seventh novel to date since I published my first book in 2014 and it’s a strange feeling. I’ve also published two novellas so the count, as far as published stories are concerned, is nine. Still, every book published is a special event and this one is just as special (although not as nerve-wracking) as the last one.

Anyway, I’ve received emails from some readers asking me what programs I use to make my videos like the one above and the lowdown happens on the next page.