IAM15 Guest Post…Anna Hub

IAM 2015 - TopperToday we’re talking to Anna Hub about…

shadowhunters_ebook

Shadow Hunters (Book Two)

“He said it wasn’t like the Valley, he never said it was paradise.”

Selena has survived her transfer into the Shadowlands — she has already beaten the odds — but she soon discovers that although life outside the Valley may be different, it is no less dangerous.

While she searches for a purpose in her new life Brayden sets out to prove he’s not bound by the compulsions of a hunter, but can he master his Instinct before the villagers come to destroy him?

***

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When I was a child I wanted to be an author, it seemed like a perfectly attainable dream to me then, but of course I grew up and realised that writing was not the best way to make a future for myself. So I discarded the idea and decided to do something normal.

When I studied nursing I thought I’d found a place for myself, but within six months of working in that field I knew I needed more. So in July 2007 I bought myself a lap top and started writing in my spare time. It took me two years to complete my first book and by the time it was finished I felt as though I’d learnt enough to pursue the dream.

My love for writing has grown rapidly since then and now I know that it’s something I can’t live without. It’s a place where there is no limit, no exact destination and my mind is free to exist in many worlds.

It’s a beautiful sanctuary.

***

Guest Post: Why I became and Indie author

These days, being an independent author becomes more viable with each passing week. In the couple of years since I first self-published there has been a huge shift in publishing platforms such as, Amazon, Kobo, Createspace, all of them recognising the growing market and making publishing easier than it’s ever been. And the best is yet to come. Plenty of authors are dropping their publishers and taking the indie route to regain creative control of their work. You can write at your own pace, choose your editors and your book cover, market according to any strategy and of course, keep all your royalties. Why wouldn’t you want to be an indie author?

Are we still battling against the idea that you need a publisher for legitimacy?

Honestly, anyone who’s written a book knows the labour comes long before the publisher. We’ve spent weeks, months, years pouring our heart into our work. We’ve suffered headaches and RSI, we’ve edited out thousands of words and replaced them with better ones, we’ve agonised over single sentences and analysed every plot element until we’re sure it fits. At the end of all that, why would we hand it over to someone else and ask them if we’ve succeeded? I guess the first question we need to ask ourselves, is why we write and what do we hope to achieve?

When I started writing, I set myself goals. There were so many dreams I had for myself and for a long time I believed finding a publisher was at the top of that list. Like so many others, I thought that was the benchmark to measure myself against. But after years of working on my series, I told a friend I planned to seek a publisher and his single response changed my entire perspective.

He asked why I’d written the books but my answer wasn’t, ‘to be published’. In reality, I became a writer to help myself make sense of the world. I use words as a means to digest my thoughts and without this vessel in my life, I don’t feel balanced. That was where it all began, and when I realised how much I loved it I wanted to see how far I could push myself. I didn’t want to put words on the page just for the sake of venting anymore, I wanting to create something that embodied who I was. To build an entire world where I could face my fears and grow into the person I longed to be.

My friend said it sounded as though I’d already succeeded and I finally understood that I didn’t need approval from a publisher. I thought I needed the shiny wrapping paper but in that one conversation I finally took a step back and acknowledged that I’d already made it. I was complete long before my books even went to print.

For me, placing that sense of achievement in someone else’s hands would have been destructive. All along, this journey was meant to teach me to recognise myself and while the books themselves aren’t perfect, they gave me the gumption to stand tall and be a proud indie author.

***

Where can we find you?

Website: http://annahubbooks.com/

Blog: http://annahubbooks.com/blog/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/annahubbooks

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AnnaHubBooks

Amazon.com http://tinyurl.com/p5dku7q

Amazon.co.uk http://tinyurl.com/nq979c8

Amazon.com.au http://tinyurl.com/px73bzu

***

Thanks for taking part in Indie Month, Anna!

(If you enjoyed Anna’s post, she’s going to be blogging for us from time to time…so check back soon!)

IAM15 Guest Post…How I Became an Indie Author

IAM 2015 - TopperToday’s guest is Hannah Harvey, author of several contemporary YA fiction novels. After a chance meeting via Twitter, Hannah has previously taken part in our regular Sunday Write-Up creative challenge, and was invited to join this month’s event from that 🙂

So, that’s enough from us, let’s hand over to Hannah for her guest post on how she became an indie author…

How I became an indie author

I’ve always loved writing. I was home educated my entire school life by my mum, and growing up, I’d always loved English the best. I’d love it when my mum would set me the task of writing a short story. This led pretty quickly into me writing not just for school, but for pleasure as well.

Hannah Harvey - Author I started to fill notebooks with stories, and even started a few novels. My main problem, was that I couldn’t finish a novel. I found it too hard to stick to one idea, because I had just so many running around in my head. This is where National Novel Writing Month came in. I started taking part and before long I was finishing full novels. My love of writing grew.

At the same time, I’d started college and I had the plan of becoming a nurse, however I was diagnosed with a condition called Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome. Basically meaning that I I was collapsing all the time. I couldn’t attend college anymore, and I still have the condition now over six years later. So I couldn’t go to college anymore, I could hardly stand up in those first months, before I got onto the right medications and got a small amount of control.

So plans had to be reworked. I was at home a lot of the time, and I had my laptop so naturally I started writing. I poured myself into writing, and I had so many finished first drafts, that I just decided it was time I did something with them.

It was round this time that I discovered Kindle Direct Publishing. This seemed like an amazing chance for me, because breaking into the publishing world is so tough, so I thought if I could do it myself then that would be amazing.

It’s hard work. I’m in charge of writing, editing, promotion, the whole lot. It’s also a lot of fun, and I love having the freedom to set my own deadlines and write exactly what I want. I’m learning so much about writing, editing, cover design and promotion, and it’s been incredible.

Currently I’ve published four novels and one novella, and I hope to have another book out in the not too distant future.

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Between Now and Goodbye final - CopyThree friends. One eventful summer.

Libby finally has the settled life she’s always wanted, and never before had. She has a happy family, two best friends Julie and Charles, and loves her home.
This summer will be the best of her life. A summer spent learning in a culinary camp in New York, but when something happens at home and she’s forced to return, how will her summer turn out?

Charles had big dreams for his future, college, medical school, and spending as much time as possible with his girlfriend Julie. This summer will change all of that. His mom’s sick, his dad’s gone and he’s left trying to hold his family together. On top of that, Julie’s pulling away from him. Will he be able to fix things before they fall apart?

Julie is bored. She’s bored of her private school. Bored of always doing the same thing. Bored of having plans cancelled by her boyfriend who’s always busy. She’s bored and she wants a change. When she attempts to liven things up with some of her school friends, she ends up making a mistake. How will that mistake end up shaping her summer?

Follow Libby, Charles and Julie as they fight their way through an emotional summer, as they learn that sometimes theirs no escaping goodbyes, but that they aren’t always bad things.

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Want to know more? Check out the links!

Hannah Harvey is a 23 year old self published author, blogger and avid reader from the UK. When she’s not writing or editing novels, she’s working on three different blogs, and reading a tonne of books.

Amazon     Website
Goodreads     Read First Chapter Free
Twitter @booktowerblog

IAM15 Guest Post…Who are the Weeia?

IAM 2015 - Topper

Today we’re joined by author Elle Boca, who writes urban fantasy set in Miami. She’s with us talking about her books and the ‘Weeia’ characters that appear in them…who are the Weeia? Let’s find out!

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Do you wonder how or why it is that some people stand head and shoulders
above others in their work? It there someone you admire especially? Say,
a celebrity, athlete, singer, guitar player, chef or dancer. Perhaps the person you noticed is not known outside his or her field. It could be
anyone, a dog walker who has a knack for understanding your pet pooch;
an organic farmer with a green thumb, a steak rub maker with an uncanny
ability to match flavors to perfection; an athlete who breaks world
records; or a diver who can do impossible things in the water you.

Perhaps they are Weeia (pronounced way-yah), superhumans who are like
you or me in almost every way except that they have extra abilities.
They live hidden among us unnoticed. Who is Weeia? It’s hard to know. It
could be your neighbor, the person behind you at the grocery store, your
banker, boss or doctor, maybe a person you’ve known all your life.
Although many Weeia live in secluded communities, from time to time a
few Weeia choose to live with people, usually in big cities where
they’re most likely to blend in with the crowds. The abilities of Weeia
among us are always explained away. They look like us; they hurt and
bleed like we do. Test their DNA. Go ahead. You won’t find anything
extraordinary.

Their superhuman abilities, which vary by type and strength, fall into
four main categories: Emotional, Material, Mental, and Temporal. Weeia,
it’s the same word for one or many, can be Lowes, Medius or Maximus.
Lowes is the most common which might explain how extraordinary beings
have lived on the same planet with ordinary ones for a long time without
anyone, or hardly anyone, discovering their existence.

Weeia abilities are varied, some common and some rare. For example,
there are Weeia who can move so quickly no one sees them. Others heal
hyper fast. Some can read people’s thoughts; pick up impressions from
inanimate objects; or move things with their mind. Others can influence
people and issue commands that must obeyed without fail. Rare Weeia
control reality through dreams or travel in time.

Weeia abilities first manifest in young adults. Something strange is
happening and the most recent generation is not developing abilities the
way they should. Amy McKnight is an exception. Raised as a human, she discovers her true
Weeia nature and rare abilities without warning or preparation.

——————————————
Want to know more? Check out the links!

Elle is the author of the Miami Weeia urban fantasy series about superhumans. Growing up the only child of a monkey mother and a rabbit father she learned to keep herself entertained and spend time reading. She makes her home in South Florida.

Goodreads http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/19229086
Twitter https://twitter.com/elleboca
Amazon author page
http://www.amazon.com/Elle-Boca/e/B00HRCBEYK/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1
Author Website http://elleboca.poyeen.com/

IAM15 Guest Post…Carmen Stevens

IAM 2015 - Topper

Today we’re talking to Carmen Stevens about…

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Anne

Fourteen-year old Anne Falkman is an arrogant, desperate orphan trying to live any way she can on the streets of London. Through her desolate, lonely years, a hope was born within her, the hope that fate would bless her and give her lasting happiness. Growing up with an abusive, alcoholic father, Anne has nurtured a fear of men. She also fears marrying and giving birth, which was the death of her mother and caused her father to go mad and violently hate his daughter. When a series of events gives Anne a chance for happiness, she takes it and achieves her dreams, but at what cost? Will she attain the life of happiness that she dreamed of? Which choices are the best ones to make?

***

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Carmen Gross, pen name Carmen Stevens, was born in Fargo, ND, March 1992. She currently resides in Detroit Lakes, MN, where she is a recent college graduate and works part-time. Carmen published her novel “Anne” in July 2013-an exciting, richly-written historical work about a young English girl who makes many bad choices throughout her life and then struggles to find redemption.

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Guest Post: Why I Love Being an Indie Author

Because I’m in control of everything involving my book, and I’m a bit of a control freak, so this is a good thing to me. I try to do my best every day as I promote my book. I take advantage of guest posts and book reviewers, utilize social media sites to get the word out, keep up with the writers’ groups that I’m a part of on Goodreads and Facebook, write in my blog regularly, and so forth. It’s definitely not the easiest job in the world, but it’s also not the hardest. I try to have fun with it, and I encourage other indie authors to enjoy their promoting as well. I do look forward to attaining a career (I attended college for Paralegalism) and get some steady money coming in so I can do more to promote my work. In the meantime, however, I’m happy just doing what I can to promote my work and myself as an author. Thanks very much for this opportunity!!

***

Where can we find you?

My Links

Blog: http://bubblymissy16.wordpress.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/carmstevens

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7191165.Carmen_Stevens

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/hisfic

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/author/carmenstevens

Book’s Links

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Anne-Carmen-Stevens-ebook/dp/B00E4D3HY0

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/372253

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18245315-anne

Thanks for taking part in Indie Month, Carmen!

IAM15 Guest Post….Bryan Perkins

IAM 2015 - Topper

Today we’re talking to Bryan Perkins about…

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The Asymptote’s Tail

Far into our future humankind controls the fabric of reality with such ease that “here” and “there” have become one. Space is bent such that many separate worlds exist, most in complete ignorance of the others. The Asymptote’s Tail begins the story of the interactions between seven of those worlds.

In one, a servant imagines life with no master and learns if she can withstand the risks that come with freedom. In another, a young girl is forced into freedom of another kind when her parents disappear and she sets out to find them.

An actor learns how much work is done by who in which worlds and decides what he wants to do about it, a black cat tries to decipher the ways of humankind and protect his owner as she does the same, an assembly line worker seeks revenge for the death of her son, a police officer learns what the job entails and decides if he can stay on the force, and a scientist vies to regain control over her inventions which are being used to wreak havoc on all the worlds of Outland.

As each new perspective illuminates experiences from the old, the Sisyphean nature of chasing an endless limit and the totality of contradictions inherent in a divided system become clear. “Then” and “now” take on as little difference as “here” and “there”, for in the end, we are all, everywhere, and forever chasing The Asymptote’s Tail.

The Asymptote’s Tail is an epic science fiction novel and the first in the four-part Infinite Limits series.

***

bp(Author photo by Geoff Badeaux)

Bryan “with a Y” Perkins is an Air Force brat who ended up in Louisiana by way of Nevada, Arizona, California, Rhineland-Palatinate (in Germany), and Colorado. After graduating from Airline High School in Bossier City, Louisiana, he received a Bachelor’s in Biology from Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge then scurried further south to New Orleans where he works a soul-crushing job for just enough hours to pay the bills and support his true passion, writing.

***

A Day in the Life of Bryan

by Bryan Perkins

At seven in the morning, sometimes six-thirty, sometimes nine, but every day of the week, sharp cat claws, delicately caressing your eyes and nose, or brushing through your hair, awaken you. Mr. Kitty is ready for the day.

You’re not, though, and Mr. Kitty knows it. That’s why he wakes you up.

“Oh, alright,” you grumble, moaning and groaning, crawling out of your bed to eliminate yesterday’s waste before stumbling back into your room to sit behind the desk and wake up the laptop that’s waiting for you there–asleep itself and probably no more ready for the day than you are.

First thing’s first, though, no matter what any of the three of you want: You have to get to work. Luckily–or unluckily as the case may be–you’re already there, so you begin as soon as you sit down, getting the worst part of your day out of the way.

Work is painful, soul crushing to even talk about. No one knows what it is–not even the people you work for–and you don’t care enough to explain. “Search engine evaluation” the people who pay you call it, but everyone you tell that title to confuses it with SEO so you don’t use it often. You prefer QA. You do quality assurance for search engines is what you tell anyone who asks–not many people, you don’t get out much. Which is true, in a sense, but you’re more like a taste tester, putting yourself in the shoes of a million different Google users, imagining how satisfied they each would be with the results of their unique personal searches, an oddly intimate relationship to have with completely anonymous strangers who you could never hope to meet.

After two hours of murdering your soul for a wage, only leaving the same room you slept in to get a drink or pee, Mr. Kitty is ready to leave. You are, too. You both actually start getting antsy around the half hour mark, but you’ve been trained so well by time that the energy doesn’t properly burst until hour two. When it does, it’s time to go outside.

Mr. Kitty is probably up on the mantel already, staring at the door of the office/bedroom, meowing to get out, so you slip the red bandana in your back pocket and snap Mr. Kitty’s pink harness and leash on. You live too close to a busy street to let him run free anymore, but he’s too used to being wild to be cooped up inside all day, so you both had to compromise. The red bandana gets tied outside your neighbor’s door so her bear of a dog, heavier even than she is, doesn’t eat the cat it’s been licking its massive slobbery jaws at for months.

Walking a cat for ten minutes is not like walking a dog for ten minutes. You don’t walk Mr. Kitty, you follow him, walking as quietly as possible so as not to frighten him, until he goes somewhere you can’t, then you turn him around and follow him some more. Usually you stay in the shaded parking lot behind your building, sniffing cars, tearing up the wooden fence with the same sharp claws that woke you up, or chasing the neighborhood cats out of your territory, but on some days, Mr. Kitty likes to walk all the way to the corner of the block, only running and hiding if there’s a bus or truck to hiss with their pneumatic brakes and scare him away.

After ten minutes, it’s back inside and back to work, whether Mr. Kitty–or you, for that matter–likes it or not. You grab a granola bar for breakfast, to eat while you work, and after two more hours of near soul death experience, it’s ten more minutes in the yard with Mr. Kitty. You work two final hours, usually while eating lunch–frozen Quorn, soy, and quinoa have been on the menu a lot since you gave up meat–then the third ten minute walk with Mr. Kitty, which is the best, because your soul is finally free to rest and recuperate.

Now the beers pop open. You don’t do that, they do it of their own accord, you swear. Besides, you live in New Orleans, a little casual alcoholism is accepted–if not actively encouraged. And though Hemingway has been fake quoted so often–it wasn’t him, actually, but Peter De Vries–as saying “Write drunk, edit sober”, you say “Two o’clock, time to drink” whatever stage of the process you’re in.

And now you’re writing, or editing–as above–but it doesn’t matter. Your soul is healing itself from the beating it took earning the right to do this. An hour passes by within the blink of an eye while you play in an imaginary world filled with imaginary people. Another beer opens, more worlds, more characters, more stories. And you write and you write, and you know it’s the writing, not the beer, repairing your soul, but another one opens anyway, because today is a new day and it’s never ending.

Then six o’clock rolls around. You’re exhausted from traveling through space and time to dimensions unknown, dimensions you wish so desperately–and work so tirelessly–to share with other people, and a little drunk because, in the four or so hours you’ve been writing, you’ve downed and crushed at least three tall boys of Busch beer. So you stumble out of your room, the half full beer still in hand, and there are your roommates, there is the real world again, there is Jeopardy and Wheel of Fortune, dinner, paying taxes, rent, and electricity, movies, TV, walking to the grocery store because you don’t have a car, there’s everything that goes away when you’re inside that imaginary world you just came from, there is everything real.

Life is harder for you there, but you press on. Maybe, if dinner filled you up enough to sober you, you crack open another beer, maybe you watch some Community or Doctor Who before going to bed early–nine, ten o’clock early–to read yourself to sleep. Whatever you do, eventually, you pass out, you enter another imaginary dimension, one which you have less control over, a dimension almost as chaotic and tumultuous as the real world, but this one filled with both made up and real characters alike.

And when you feel like you can’t take it anymore, that nothing in any of the dimensions makes sense, usually at seven in the morning, sometimes six-thirty, sometimes nine, but every day of the week, sharp cat claws, delicately caressing your eyes and nose, or brushing through your hair, awaken you from that dreamland and tell you to get back to work, because Mr. Kitty is ready for a new day, and it will never end.

Bryan Perkins 06/03/15

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Where can we find you?

Website: http://bryanperkinsauthor.com/

Blog: http://bryanperkinsauthor.com/blog/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/BPerkinsAuthor

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BryanPerkinsAuthor
The Asymptote’s Tail paperback: http://www.amazon.com/Asymptotes-Tail-Infinite-Limits/dp/0996395318/

The Asymptote’s Tail eBook: http://www.amazon.com/Asymptotes-Tail-Infinite-Limits-Book-ebook/dp/B00XNIUFLA/

Thanks for taking part in Indie Month, Bryan!

IAM 15 Guest post…Annabelle Franklin

 IAM 2015 - Topper

Today we’re talking to Annabelle Franklin about…

SLAPSTYX_cover_FINAL

The Slapstyx

The Slapstyx features psychic twins Georgie and Gem whose stepfather works for dodgy businessman Zachary Zigstack. Greedy Zigstack has teamed up with disgusting Dr Quagley and his tribe of grubby goblins to make everyone buy his toxic cleaning product. This dreadful detergent is poisoning the world’s oceans, and the twins must use their magical skills to put an end to Zigstack’s dirty dealings before all the sea creatures are destroyed.

***

AFranklincomp

Annabelle Franklin is a children’s author living on Wales’s South Gower coast, in an area of outstanding natural beauty that could be a model for Fairyland. She has published two middle grade novels, Gateway to Magic and The Slapstyx, and her short story Mercy Dog appears in Unforgotten (Accent Press), an anthology themed around WW1. When not writing Annabelle helps rescue ex-racing sighthounds, two of which share her home.

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Indie Interview

  • A genie grants you three writing-related wishes: what would you wish for and why?

A magic word to switch off my Inner Editor while I’m writing a first draft, another magic word to switch it on again when I’m ready to edit my work, and a fairy to take care of everything else in my life so I can concentrate on writing.

  • Describe your ideal writing space.

A luxury beach hut in the Maldives.

  • What has been your most rewarding experience since being published?

Hearing that children are enjoying my stories. When I hear that a child has loved one of my books and laughed at the funny bits, I know I’ve done my job well.

  • Who is your favourite character from The Slapstyx, and why?

Zachary Zigstack. I have a grotesque sense of humour, and Zachary Zigstack is grotesque. I love it when my writing makes me laugh out loud.

  • What do you love about most about writing?

The opportunity to escape from reality and become a fictional character, especially if that character is a child. Much more fun than being grown up!

***

Where can we find you?

The Slapstyx can be found on Amazon at http://myBook.to/Slapstyx and Smashwords at http://bit.ly/1FQ3gnr .

Gateway to Magic can be found on Amazon at http://myBook.to/G2M

Amazon author page http://Author.to/AFranklin

Smashwords author page https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/StarFireMagic

Blog http://annabellefranklinauthor.wordpress.com

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/pages/Annabelle-Franklin-Author/1474449249481609

Twitter https://twitter.com/Anabel1Franklin

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6904737.Annabelle_Franklin

Thanks for taking part in Indie Month, Annabelle!

IAM15 Guest Post…James Keller

IAM 2015 - Topper

Today we’re talking to James Keller about…

Hand_of_god_

Hand of God

An advanced race of humans have seemingly conquered death only to see themselves dying off from stagnation. A crisis on two fronts emerges as their solar system is destined to be swallowed by the super massive black hole in the galactic center. An engineer from earth may hold the key to their salvation but what he learns in the process will forever change him and perhaps all of humanity.

***

I am a mechanical engineer working for a cancer diagnostics company. Born in 1962. I spent my senior year of high school as an exchange student in Japan and did the ironman triathlon in 1984 (long time ago!). Current hobbies include woodworking and origami.

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Guest Post

I have been told that I should write from a number of different people over the years, but never really had the urge or something I considered worth writing about until this year. Hand Of God has many themes in it, but starts with the idea of what happens once a civilization completely understands the universe? Does immortality become a curse at that point? If there is nothing to strive for, does life lose its meaning?

I also had another idea that I believed would make a good book (which is the revelation at the end) but never quite had a viable means of making it happen in a way that I could stay engaged. Seeing Interstellar planted the seeds of the approach, and time dilation provided the means.

Hand of God isn’t space opera, and that is intentional, as it has been done to death in my opinion. I wanted something different, and hopefully unique. Something to make you think. Nothing is free in the universe as far as I can tell, and Hand of God tries to explore what the true price of genetic enhancement and immortality might be.

I am currently working on the sequel to Hand of God. Originally it was going to be one book but once I started writing it became clear it would be better as a series. I don’t artificially pad my writing by going into 2 page descriptions of what the character is wearing, or how long and thin their fingers are. If it doesn’t add anything tangible to the story I tend to leave it out. Being an engineer means there is an efficiency mandate that prevents me from writing in that manner, and that is why it is relatively short at ~75,000 words.

If you read it and enjoy it please review/rate it! If you want to discuss it or the themes or just have questions my author page on Goodreads is the place.

***

Where can we find you?

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14056558.James_Keller

Thanks for taking part in Indie Month, James!