a new release and a blog hop…

Hello lovelies…

 

Somehow it is Fall…of 2015! How exactly has this happened?  The good news is that this means it is time for another installment in the Holidays with Jane collection!  This time we are celebrating Halloween!

 

Introducing Holidays with Jane: Trick or Sweet:

 

Trick or Sweet

 

Isn’t it gorgeous?

 

The ebook is currently for sale on Amazon and the paperback is coming soon.  Here’s the list of stories, I have Pride and Prejudice with time, which was both fun and daunting ‘cause it’s P&P and basically perfect and everyone loves it!

 

Load up on pumpkin spice, grab your bowl of candy, and settle in for a spooky night with six brand-new modern Jane Austen adaptations from the authors of Holidays with Jane: Christmas Cheer and Spring Fever!

Must Be Magic
by Kimberly Truesdale
Eight years ago Anne Elliot made a devastating choice. When a new threat and an old love both come into her life, she faces that choice again. This time will it be love or will it be magic?

Once Upon a Story
by Rebecca M. Fleming
Catie Morland isn’t sure how to explain what happened at Abbey College’s annual Fall-o-Ween event until bumping into vacationing sisters Jane and Cassie. Will everything begin to make sense as she tells them the whole story?

Insensible
by Cecilia Gray
Miriam Dashwood has to throw a party for straight-laced Brandon Firestone without spending a dime. When the lead for rock sensation Willow Bee offers a free performance, Miriam figures he’s her hero. Brandon has other ideas, but will free spirited Miriam come around to his way of thinking?

Emma Ever After
by Melissa Buell
Emma Woodhouse is determined that this year’s Fall Ball will be the most successful one yet. An influx of single men in Highbury make a Bachelor Auction a reality. Can she work her matchmaking magic once again?

Mansfield Unmasked
by Jennifer Becton
An impromptu Halloween party at Mansfield Park Boarding House provides Pug an opportunity to use his magic powers to unite Pryce and Spenser. But can he expose their true feelings for each other before his powers fade?

Beyond Midnight
by Jessica Grey
Halloween isn’t what Will Harper planned. His sister is playing fairy godmother. He’s at Chawton High’s Trick or Sweet Dance. He’s in costume…and falling for Elena Marquez? Is it real or magic…and can it last Beyond Midnight?

 

BlogHopHWJ

 

To promote Holidays with Jane: Trick or Sweet, the lovely Melissa Buell has set up a fantastic blog hop. The start post is over on Indie Jane and there will be posts from all of these fantastic authors (and slightly less fantastic me) along the way, as well as a giveaway.

 

I hope you join us!

New Words…a Blog Hop…and a Giveaway

Hello my lovelies! This just in: I AM NOT DEAD! It’s been ages and ages since I’ve blogged…not since the new site design (thanks as always to Tori my ever-awesome designer for the help!).

Magnus KirI’m going to be honest, it’s been a rough few months…well, really, a rough year in the life of Jess and I haven’t had the time to write or blog like I should.

Enter Dean Hardy – Author, Twitter-Dude, George MacDonald Fan, and Excellent Namer of Children (if your kid shares a name with a Narnian you are my new favorite. The end).  Dean invited me to be a part of a blog hop and instead of saying “well gee, I haven’t blogged in an age and a day,” I totally said “ummmm, sure!”  So here I am a’bloggin’ and a’hoppin’ and a’talkin’ about me as a writer.  First, before you read anymore, make sure to check out Dean’s post from last week and read all about his awesome Middle Grade novel Magnus Kir. (Click the link, lovelies, don’t make me tell you twice!)

 

And now on to the part where I’m weirdly self-promotey and talk about myself. Cause I’m awesome:

 

What inspired me to be a writer.

Ummmm.  I really wanted to have a fantastic answer for this…something that makes me sound witty and erudite…and possibly less crazy than normal. I even polled my writer friends to see if I could steal some of their inspirations.  This is my life, people, stealing my friend’s inspirations.  My fave is Melissa Buell (whom I love and you should read – visit her site) who told me she read Twilight, hated it, and wanted to write a good book that her sister could read. Personally, I love me some Twilight, but I GET THE SENTIMENT and it’s a STORY you can tell about what inspired you – like an originating inspiration point.  I don’t have one of those.

Here is my honest answer to this question: I write because the voices in my brain won’t shut the heck up if I don’t get them out on paper.  They don’t just talk to me, they talk to EACH OTHER.  They create scenes and entire back stories and subplots while I stare vacantly at the kitchen wall while the hot water runs over the dirty dishes.  I have approximately thirty-two separate stories in my head at any one time…well, thirty-two is my max (I operate at max story capacity most of the time).  What happens when a thirty-third story pops into my sad little mind? I MUST WRITE ONE DOWN in order to reduce the number back to thirty-two.  This is why I write.  (For reference, Ang who is next on this blog hop suggested I say I write for the Cold. Hard. Cash. And then we both broke down into hysterical laughter…and tears).

On a sentimental note, my entire writing career exists because of – and is dedicated to – my FaFa (grandfather), Charles Richard Grey who was the best man I have ever known.  He was an artist – an amazingly talented artist who worked in graphic design for years in order to take care of his family and always wanted to paint for himself when he retired.  Shortly after he retired he almost completely lost his eye sight.  I never once heard him complain but it always broke my heart that his art stayed inside of him.  Because of that, I resolved that I’d grab the chance to create the art I love and hold onto it as tight as I can.  He also introduced me to my all time favorite author, Mary Stewart, and my favorite book is This Rough Magic…I have FaFa’s original hardcover copy.

Well! That was entirely too long and much more wordy than I originally anticipated…now I’m supposed to talk about my book(s).  I’ve written a few, and I couldn’t figure out which one to feature here.  There’s the first two in the Fairytale Trilogy, Awake and Atone…(I promise you Aspire is coming…eventually), then there’s the chick-lit Austenesque Attempting Elizabeth, and finally the two short story collections, Views from the Tower and Views from the Depths.

 

BUT YOU HAVE ALL HEARD ALL ABOUT THESE BOOKS.  We need some new words, yo!

 

My next book (which I promise will come out this year or there will be much wailing and gnashing of teeth), is based on my all time favorite fairy tale Allerleirauh or All-Kinds-of-Fur.  The original story has so much drama and weirdness and trauma and so many whys.  It’s in the places where the original causes me to ask “why in the heck?” that I find the most inspiration for a fairy tale adaptation and Allerleirauh is chock full of “why in the hecks?”  I can’t even fully explain my obsession with this fairy tale, but it speaks to me and I’ve wanted to write a version of it FOREVER.  I am absolutely in love with my main characters Anna and Frederick and so happy to get to tell their story.  So, without further ado, here’s a brief sample of my version of Allerleirauh called Sun, Moon, Stars.  In this scene Anna flees her father’s home, heading north into the heart of winter.

 

*Warning: this is an unedited draft, read with a grain of salt…or a boulder of salt, that works too*

 

I startled awake, heartbeat pounding in my ears.  My chest hurt from its wild running. I gasped in a cold, wet breath, the sound loud in the silence.
There. There it was again.  My eyes widened as I listened. The baying of the dogs.
I clenched my fists.  The fear raced through me unchecked, clawing at my throat, tightening my stomach.  Bile rose in my throat.
The sound came again; the lead dog calling out and the rest of the pack answering.
Every muscle in my body tensed, screaming at me to flee.  My mind raced as fast as my heartbeat.  My breath was a shallow panting that I was sure could be heard from miles away.
Don’t get up. Stay still. Don’t get up.  I slowly opened my fists and ran my palms over the coat covering my legs.  I pressed down, trying to soothe myself.  Trying to keep myself from stumbling up and fleeing.  Trying to focus.  How far away are they?  Listen, listen, listen.
I strained to hear over the thrumming of my heart.  The baying sounded again to the southwest.  They’d followed my scent.  The sounds were faint enough that they were probably on the other side of the Vesia.  I tried to take a deep breath – to feel the relief that should come with that realization, but I couldn’t force the air into my chest. My heartbeat was still careening wildly out of control.
You expected the dogs, you knew he would send them.   There’s no reason to panic, they’re far away. They haven’t come north.
But my mind couldn’t convince my body.  Every muscle remained tense.  Every breath hurt.  My mouth watered and I wondered what I would even be able to throw up.  I hadn’t eaten in hours.
I wrapped my arms around my legs and rested my head on my knees. I gave up on reasoning with myself.  Every time I tried to tell my body to relax I tensed even more.  Eventually the sounds of the dogs will go away. Eventually I’ll be able to breathe normally.
I could still hear them canvassing up and and down the Vesia, trying to pick up the scent. After what seemed like hours, the hunters must have decided that I’d kept going south.  The whine of the dogs as they were dragged away from my trail faded into the distance.  I remained curled up, head on my knees, until daylight began to fade.
I forced myself to open the satchel and take out half of one of the small loaves of bread.  I had to choke it down, but I knew my body needed sustenance.  I had to be able to walk. I tried not to think about how many days my food would last.  I drank the water from my flask and refilled it with snow.
Then I started walking north.

 

*****

 

I hope you enjoyed this little sneak peek of Sun, Moon, Stars. Make sure to check out the inspiration board on pinterest and read the original fairy tale.

 

The next author to post on this blog hop is going to be my fabulous friend Ang on August 11th.  Make sure to check out her blog.

 

And because giveaways make EVERYTHING BETTER and I want to make sure you read Dean’s awesome book, I’m giving away an ebook version of Magnus Kir along with an ebook of your choice of any one of my books.

 

Thanks for reading, guys!

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway