Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Sharing the passion...my author tour

Hi, Brigitte

Please pass on my thanks to all those with Northern Lights Library System involved in sponsoring my author tour. It was an incredible experience that certainly  stretched me beyond my comfort zone and ignited abilities within me that I didn't know I had.

Writers are prone to being non-adventurous, solitary critters so it was challenging to become comfortable with public speaking, to hone my teaching skills, and to travel along roads I'd never been on to destinations I sometimes hadn't previously known existed...alone and often in the dark.

Each visit was unique and memorable and all libraries and schools welcomed me warmly to their venues and communities.

This tour was a great opportunity to promote both my books and myself as a writer to those who are already my fans, to those new to my work, and to the local media who often showered me with attention.

It's my hope that I successfully communicated my love of literacy and my passion for my books and that I was at least half as inspiring to my audiences as they were to me. I hope I made a difference in the lives of at least a few youngsters who may take a lesson from my presentations and my BackTracker novels. I hope I was a source of encouragement and information to those, both young and old, who dream of pursuing their own writing career.

Thank you again for making this happen.

"Sharing the passion..."
is brought to you by FIREWALLS

"...a rollercoaster of emotions"

"...a tale of comfort and hope that we, too, can slay our own dragons."

"...a gritty, fast paced thriller"

"Firewalls provoked emotions in me and that is a sign of a brilliant book."

Friday, November 22, 2013

My author tour adventures

My author tour has certainly been an adventure! This past week was my busiest with five presentations in the space of two days and 500 km of travel between.

With only one stop left, a workshop on ePublishing in Cold Lake, 120 km to the north, I feel myself winding down, looking forward to getting back to my writing but already missing the applause and the media attention.

This tour stretched me to the limits, broadened my horizons, taught me new skills and ignited latent ones I didn't know I possessed. The presentations fuelled my passion for my novels and my love of writing. I discovered I could drive hours, down highways I'd never been on, to destinations I'd never heard of...all alone. In the dark. Day after day.

I learned how to use self-serve gas pumps and how to keep the attention of students for an hour. I discovered new stress-management techniques, spoke to children and adults, small audiences and large. I listened.

I autographed many books, smiled for many cameras, met people who'd read my books, convinced many others that they should. In each and every community I was made to feel welcome and important--things treasured by my fragile author ego.

As well as drawing friends from my past and present to my presentations, I spoke to many strangers--revelling in the support of all those who chose to attend.

I received applause, cards, and gifts--each memento a precious keepsake of my Great Alberta Author Tour.

Plamondon School gave me a travel thermos, Lac la Biche a rock etching and a friend from my school days in Tofield handed me hugs and a bookmark.

The Lac la Biche Bold Centre is an amazing multiplex that houses the public library.

Nothing like seeing one's name in lights...well, sort of lights.

Creative, colourful posters greeted me at each library I visited.

Thank you to the Northern Lights Library System for sponsoring and organizing this tour and thank you to the libraries and schools who participated.

"My author tour adventures" is brought to you by:

(Soon available in paperback)

"...be prepared for a roller coaster of emotions."
"A tale of comfort and hope."
"Fast paced and gritty"
"Firewalls provoked emotions in me..."
"A good read"


Tuesday, November 5, 2013

FIREWALLS and Post Traumatic Stress

My new release FIREWALLS is up on Amazon and Smashwords and other fine online retailers in eFormat and will soon be available in paperback, too. I will not be officially launching this novel until December, when my 23-stop library tour is over, but an author can't sit on secrets for long.

http://famousfiveplus.blogspot.comSo, in conjunction with my fine friends and fellow authors over at Famous Five Plus, I'm giving you an advance sneak-peek at this, the third novel in my BackTracker Series.

Please visit the Famous Five Plus website where you'll find more information about this novel as well as a special time-limited coupon enabling you to download FIREWALLS from Smashwords in the eFormat of your choice for only 99₵ .

I'll share with you here, the Dedication and Author's Message from FIREWALLS:

Dedicated to those struggling with past traumas and to their loved ones who share their pain. 

Message from the Author 

I hope FIREWALLS, with its compassionate look at the roles of friendship and love in the healing of those with Post Traumatic Stress (PTS), enlightened you on the burden that trauma places on the mind, body, and soul of its victims and their loved ones.

Among other things, traumatic stress can alter thinking, derail love, split apart relationships, destroy careers, spark violence, cause nightmares and induce depression. Reaction to traumatic events can occur immediately or years later (as in this story), and in varying degrees and combinations of symptoms.

If you sometimes felt the characters were acting ‘out of character’ they were, because as Katrina and Shrug were struggling to overcome their pasts, PTS was chipping away at their hearts, clouding their thinking, and altering their personalities and behaviours.

PTS, also sometimes called Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome (PTSS) or, when job-related, Critical Incident Stress, can be effectively treated and those who suffer can recover and live healthy, fulfilling lives.

It’s incumbent on all of us to recognize and understand the symptoms in those whose lives touch ours and fully encourage their recovery. Katrina and Shrug were indeed lucky that they were surrounded by supportive friends and co-workers and were offered the professional help they needed. That in the end, they were also able to help each other heal, is a testament to the strength of the human heart in the face of adversity.

If FIREWALLS left you feeling Katrina and Shrug both have bright futures, you may be right—but you’ll have to wait for the next novel in the BackTracker Series to find out for sure!

Saturday, November 2, 2013

We are a collective of YA authors who have come together to spread the word about the newest, bold, gritty fiction. Our genres include realistic, contemporary, historical, magical realism, and paranormal--with a healthy dose of suspense woven through all of them.

Uncommon YA features not only the latest titles from the above montage but it has heaps of other features that will interest you. Whether you are a reader, writer or both, there is something to suit all interests.
Shout out! Saturdays.
BLAST events
Meet my Main Character.
Behind the Scenes in Publishing.
Interview an Agent.
Talking to my Teenage Self
+ more!
For a short time Uncommon YA is offering YOU the chance to choose your prize. Click on the titles below to learn more about each one.
You can add it to your Goodreads shelf while you're there!
WARNING. It will be a tough choice choosing just one to win!
The 6 titles you can choose from.
Sliding on the Edge    
 Escape from Eden Vigilante Nights


a Rafflecopter giveaway

3 people will win their choice of 1 Ebook of selected titles. Or a 10 page critique of your work in progress is also available from the authors

Friday, November 1, 2013

The Great Alberta Author Tour

Perhaps it was studying Arthur Miller’s DEATH OF A SALESMAN in high school that caused it—literature can have a tremendous impact on young psyches. Whatever it was, travelling about the country marketing my books took on  a sinister connotation...for unknown reasons. If you haven’t read about that phobia of mine, check out my post on the Famous Five Plus website. 

I predicted on there that the best way to overcome that irrational fear was to get out and do it—tour Alberta’s largest library system, from the southern most corner in the east to the northern most points to the west.

Although the tingle in my tummy tells me remnants of the fear linger, the fact I can sleep before and between my travel stops tells me I'm well on my way to overcoming it.

One third of the way through the 23-stop library tour and nothing dire or dreadful has happened during any of my journeys nor at any of my destinations. 

Like in my books, the settings of my travels contain symbolic clues about my reality. It’s not just the audiences I speak to, nor the workshops I give. Not the emails, or autographs. It’s watching the low October sun skim the horizon, the prairies change to forests, the brush of snow, the touch of frost, the harvested fields...an aging world approaching winter.

It’s discovering how active the oil industry is in what I presumed to be remote Alberta communities, how busy the ribbons of highway with construction equipment, tanker trucks, coach lines, and machinery of unknown name and purpose spreading out past the edges of the lanes led and followed by pilot trucks, their frantic “Wide Load” signs flashing. It’s pipeline crossing signs every few miles, fields of stubble turned dark by ditchers setting massive culverts into the ground. High tension power grids, encoded directional signs.

It’s earphones on and stories on my kindle set to audio—Mr. Robot Voice telling me of British romance, Canadian sasquatches and edgy horror. Gritty American teen. It’s 45 minutes into my travel and the directional sign advising 100 km to my destination—just one more hour.

It’s the young lad looking askance at the author photo on my book mark, wondering aloud why I’d since cut my hair, I looked much better with it longer.
The 13-year old who was certain I must write a sequel to my quantum computer SciFi that isn’t even out yet, and had it plotted for me within 10 minutes.

It was the girl who was not shy at all about telling me I was her hero and she has all my books in her room and asked what it’s like to be an author—do people come up to me and bother me for autographs?

It's getting thank you gifts like these from the Morinville Public Library
It’s finding others my age, who’ve always dreamed of writing a novel, seeking advice on how to make that happen. It’s the mother with the treasured manuscript of her daughter’s in her hands, wanting to polish it and see it in print. It’s the challenge of keep a classroom of adolescents attentive for an hour. (Here, let me show you another book trailer...)

It’s missing Hallowe’en with the grandchildren and the granddaughter’s birthday and the book club meeting and my curling team. It’s the interest in my stories, in the social situations they address, the appreciation of the potential positive effects my novels can have on teens. It’s talking about writing and reading and gangs and drugs and bullying and Hugh Everitt’s Many World Series...alternate universes. Death and dying and the true nature of time.

It’s ups and downs and deepening winter weather, the end of Daylight Savings Time and much more driving in the dark. It’s the pure joy on the faces and in the feet of the Pomeranians when I finally return home and the smile on hubby’s face. “How’d it go?”

It’s lunch on the road and forgetting my glasses and leaving my water bottle in the garage and not packing the power cord for my computer. And selling books. 

Wow. It’s a lot of things, most of them wonderful. 


The Great Alberta Author Tour was brought to you by


viewBook.at/B009P593YU“It's a worthy sequel to the explosive ‘THE TRAZ’.

 “Wise, haunting, deeply moving…unforgettable!” 

“Courage and insight make for a compelling read” 

 "Gave me much to think about."