books

Writing Update & ARC Team call.

Apparently I look like a writer. How do I know this? I showed up to a meeting of the Friends of Ngaio Marsh today, and someone said “[Gillian], you look like a writer–would you take notes?” Approximately two seconds later there was a motion passed to make me a committee member, followed immediately by a motion to promote me to secretary–and here I am—secretary!

Weird fact: I have taken the minutes at all but two meetings that I’ve attended. Apparently I exude good note-taking vibes. Which, I do, so…truth in advertising?

I could share the minutes of the meeting with you today, but I’m not sure that you really want to know all the details of the heritage house tour, so instead a writing update. I’ve mentioned that I’ve got three upcoming releases: The Charity Shop Rejects Live in Concert (For the Love of Christmas #3), Life After Humanity (Thorns and Fangs #3) and Dead Wrong (Thorns and Fangs #4). Gentlemen Don’t Murder is currently with an agent, awaiting feedback. And I’m on chapter ten of an expected fifteen chapters of Morgen Prince (Deep Magic #4). 

You may be thinking ‘That’s a lot of books.’ You’re not wrong.

I don’t know when I came up with the idea of releasing a book a month in 2018, but I did, and so that is the plan. I already regret it, but the point of goals is to challenge yourself and I am definitely feeling challenged. The big freelance project is the major cloud raining on my parade right now, but I’m going to try and avoid taking on any Freelance projects over December and instead try to enjoy the holiday season and my family, without making myself insanely busy.

This may be more of a challenge than releasing a book a month in 2018, but hey–dream big, right?

As I prepare to write more books, I’m going to need help making sure that the works I produce stay up to scratch. If you’re interested in donating your time as an Advance Review Copy (ARC) reader, please drop me an e-mail at gillian.stkevern at gmail dot com letting me know that you’re interested! I’d honestly really appreciate it. This would involve reader the book and leaving an honest review on Amazon, Goodreads, and other online bookstores. If you’d like to help, but can’t commit to reading right now, then taking the time to leave a review on any of my other works would work just as well. Thanks in advance!

Cats Have Staff: A.L. Anderson

My friend M. Caspian shared her cute fluff penname this week, revealing she occasionally writes ‘sugary-sweet M/M romance with HEAs all round‘ (she also reviews notebooks and introduced me to Little & Fridays so I totally endorse following her). I feel like I deserved a treat for getting Dead Wrong submitted by my deadline, and figured a sugary-sweet fic was better for me than eating half a packet of gingernuts. When I saw Cats Have Staff I knew this was the story for me.

Cats Have Staff is short, sweet, uncomplicated but still had me ridiculously invested in Sal and Golightly. In short, it was exactly what I needed tonight, and I thoroughly recommend it for cat-people or people trying to reduce their gingernut intake.

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Salvatore Moretti has spent the last three years alone, ever since his lover Benjamin Cresswell left town for the job opportunity of a lifetime. Sal knew he couldn’t hold Ben back, and instead he’s been focused on creating a solid life for himself. A good life. He doesn’t need more than that . . . does he?

This is a short story of 14,893 words.

Cats Have Staff on Amazon.

Reading: Sunset at Pencarrow

Regular readers of this blog will remember my interview with Anne Barwell about her release with co-author Lou Sylvre, Sunset at Pencarrow. I’m reading it now (very slowly because of a lot of family stuff that is happening), and wow. The story could not be more apt.

The two main characters meet when their flights out of Wellington are grounded because of fog.

Lead article when I took a break to check the news feed on my phone: Rotorua to Christchurch trip takes group to Auckland, 28 hours later.  The headline is a little misleading. The group is from Christchurch, heading to Rotorua–the exact same trip I’m making in August to the RWNZ 2017 Conference.

We’ve had similar headlines all week, as temperatures drop and snow fell in a lot of the South Island. Here’s hoping that Anne and Lou write a follow up novel, where the heroes have smooth flights all the way to Rotorua, is what I say.

Buy Sunset at Pencarrow.

Dreamspinner Press  | Google Books | iTunes | Kobo |Amazon| Barnes and Noble 

SunsetAtPencarrow 400x600Blurb:

Kiwi Nathaniel Dunn is in a fighting mood, but how does a man fight Wellington’s famous fog? In the last year, Nate’s lost his longtime lover to boredom and his ten-year job to the economy. Now he’s found a golden opportunity for employment where he can even use his artistic talent, but to get the job, he has to get to Christchurch today. Heavy fog means no flight, and the ticket agent is ignoring him to fawn over a beautiful but annoying, overly polite American man.

Rusty Beaumont can deal with a canceled flight, but the pushy Kiwi at the ticket counter is making it difficult for him to stay cool. The guy rubs him all the wrong ways despite his sexy working-man look, which Rusty notices even though he’s not looking for a man to replace the fiancé who died two years ago. Yet when they’re forced to share a table at the crowded airport café, Nate reveals the kind heart behind his grumpy façade. An earthquake, sex in the bush, and visits from Nate’s belligerent ex turn a day of sightseeing into a slippery slope that just might land them in love.

World of Love: Stories of romance that span every corner of the globe.

 

 

 

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Auckland Haul!

Did I mention I was in Auckland? I’m in Auckland! And having a great time, mostly thanks to the lovely M. Caspian and the amazing Joanna Penn.

True story: My sister asks me what I’m doing in Auckland and I mention M. Caspian is taking me to the Typo outlet store (Typo being a stationary chain here in NZ). My sister immediately frowns. “And you’re only taking one bag?” I am promptly loaned an extra bag with which to carry home my Typo haul.

Turns out … she knows me very, very well.

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This is the result of one day in Auckland, one day with Joanna Penn! Writer friends, be jealous–she is even more fun in person than she is on the podcast! She made a lot of really complex material really easy to understand. My brain is fried, but I feel really positive about my plans for the year and enthused about writing.

Breakdown. Auckland adventures started with the aforementioned Typo outlet store, followed by Little and Friday–going to Little and Friday with M. Caspian is my new favourite Auckland tradition. To demonstrate why, here is an orange triceratops trying to steal my lemon and coconut cake.

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M. Caspian’s bacon and egg pie did not survive long enough for a photo, but it was beautiful. The best bacon and egg pie I have ever been allowed to share (if it had been my pie, I wouldn’t have shared it–M. Caspian is a much better person than me).

From Little and Friday, we went on a stationary and bookstore tour, travelling to The Booklover, a charming independent bookstore, to hunt down a book I’d been asked to find, before continuing on to kikki-k, where we spent a really enjoyable time browsing more stationary. This is where I acquired my beautiful pens!

Saturday was the reason for me coming to Auckland–Joanna Penn’s Successful Self-Publishing Seminar. It was fantastic. 40 people, but it felt like a much smaller group. I saw old friends, made new ones, and left feeling the most enthusiastically exhausted I have been in ages. It was all go–I learned lots of things and am fired up to get to work, which was what I most needed.

And I got the chance to talk to Joanna and tell her just how much her books and podcasts have helped and inspired me over the years! I was not brave enough to ask for a photo together, but I did get this:

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She signed it for me! (and yes, that is my real name)

I do not think I could have had a better time in Auckland–and I still have two days left! I’m planning to explore Auckland (weather permitting) and share my adventures here on the blog, so stay tuned for more–although I have been banned from entering any other stationary shops.