Blood sped through my veins as I gripped the edge of the counter, gazing into the face I knew so well. A shadow of confusion crossed his expression as he stared back at me before the corner of his mouth drew up in a slight grin, and my face flushed with a burning heat. Goosebumps shivered down my arms, the air seeming to quiver with a faint breeze.
“Layla, are you okay?” Someone shook me by the shoulder. “Layla?” Devon’s voice rang from far away.
I tried to speak, but words wouldn’t form. I remembered his face, the waterfall, the forest. The warmth of his hand in mine. Droplets of water cascading down his golden skin. His eyes reflecting the sunlight like crystals. The rush of wind as he ran beside me. His laughter. The sound of his voice when he called my name.
November 19, 2013 | Categories: A Fire Born Novel, Books, Fire Born Updates, J Taylor Publishing, New Releases, Reading, TIED, Young Adult Novels | Tags: Arts, Author, Book, Fiction, J. Taylor Publishing, laney mcmann, Layla and Max, The Fire Born Novels, TIED, TIED by Laney McMann, YA Fiction, young adult book releases 2013, young adult paranormal romance, young adult urban fantasy | Leave A Comment »
A big Thank You to everyone who participated in the second week of the TIED blog tour.
Got some awesome reviews, and had some great conversations.
Here’s how the week went:
Cremona over at Mythical Books had an incredible 4/5 Star review of TIED, and she’s shouting out the word of the continued Group Giveaway.
Julie and I talked about daydreams and pizza toppings at Bookarooju
Aimee knows that I don’t eat Ben and Jerry’s and who in the world, dead or alive, I’d like to meet most and why. Aimee Laine’s Blog
Julie and I talked about TIED and writing, and the GIveaway continues over on her blog: Julie Reece’s Blog
The YA Book Addict had another great 4 STAR review of TIED.
Crazy Four Books had another awesome review of TIED!
The super cool, Juliette Cross and I talked Books, Baubles and Bad Boys in her guest post.
The Reading Diaries gave TIED 5 beautifully enthusiastic STARS. Plus an interview and the GIVEAWAY continues.
TIED earned 5 STARS from Happy Tails and Tales Blog and I am seriously humbled now.
J Keller Ford and I talked PJ’s and Quidditch. Which position would you play?
Emi Gayle knows why I never snuck out of the house in High School and what color my prom dress was.
AGAIN, Thank You so, so much to everyone who hosted, shouted, tweeted, liked, reviewed, and interviewed this week for the blog tour.
You guys are sooo awesome!
See everyone next week for round three!
- September New Release Book Blog Hop #GIVEAWAY! (laneymcmann.com)
- #TIED Blog Tour Wk 1 Recap (laneymcmann.com)
- TIED Launches TODAY! (laneymcmann.com)
September 21, 2013 | Categories: A Fire Born Novel, Blog Tours, Fire Born Updates, J Taylor Publishing, New Releases, TIED, Young Adult Novels | Tags: Arts, Author, Book, Facebook, Fiction, J. Taylor Publishing, laney mcmann, Layla and Max, Quidditch, Social media, The Fire Born Novels, TIED, TIED by Laney McMann, Twitter, ya fantasy author, YA Fiction, young adult book releases 2013, young adult paranormal romance, young adult urban fantasy | 2 Comments »
As another special treat on the blog today, I have J.A. Belfield here to talk about her newly released
Adult Paranormal novel,
The third book in The Holloway Pack Stories.
Let’s hear what she has to say:
Me: How long have you been writing?
J.A.: Hi, Laney. I started writing mid-2009, when I knocked out a werewolf (surprise, surprise) tale called Changes within 2 weeks (no, you can’t read it *shudder*). And, within 7 weeks of writing, I had a complete trilogy that I thought would ROCK THE BOOKISH WORLD!!!! Yeah, I kind of got over that attitude pretty quick.
Me: Ha! Yeah, I think a lot of writers can relate to that. Did you always aspire to be an author?
J.A.: I didn’t actually, and I’m sad about that. I started writing because I’d decided to jot down a dream I’d had, which had evolved into a bunch of daydreams, and I once I did, I realised I’d actually been daydreaming up stories my entire life.
So much lost potential for stories because I didn’t recognise my musings for what they were.
Me: It’s interesting how our daydreams and dreams finally shake us hard enough so we hear them saying, “hey, I’m asking to be written.” You made up for lost time with The Holloway Pack Stories, though.
Since Caged is part of the The Holloway Pack Stories, can you tell us what inspired you to write the series?
J.A.: I was only actually inspired to write the first book: Darkness & Light, when Sean Holloway started yelling for attention to tell me his tale. Once I’d completed that, I realised I wasn’t ready to say goodbye to the pack, and within a few weeks, the beginning of Blue Moon was in a document.
However, it wasn’t until partway through writing Caged that I truly recognised the stories’ potential as a series, because when I first ‘blinked-up’ the idea for Caged, I assumed I was aiming for another trilogy. Funny how we can create something without fully understand its scope.
Me: I can completely relate to that. So, who is your favorite character in Caged and why?
J.A.: This is a tough one because I have so many—though I can’t name them all without giving away spoilers as there are some new introductions to the group with this tale. So Ethan, definitely! And Kyle comes a close second, because his relationship with Ethan can make them seem like a double-act at times.
Me: Are you working on any new projects you’d like to share with us?
J.A.: Well, anyone who’s been reading my blog will know that the fourth Holloway Pack title, Unnatural, is already written and contracted for a spring 2014 release. However, my next goals are writing Holloway Pack 5, discovering if I have it in me to write a YA or NA, or maybe even contemporary romance, and definitely much farther into the future, a freshly-built paranormal romance world.
So, I might be taking a small writing break until autumn, but I’m going to be busy with a lot to figure out once I head back into the writing cave again.
Me: With all your future writing plans, tell us, are you a Plotter or Pantser?
J.A.: I used to be 100% pantser, but now I kind of do pantsering with the odd bit of plotting interspersed.
Me: Me too. I think they call us Hybrids these days. What books are you currently reading, if any? (I know your TBR list is a mile long )
J.A.: Right now, I’m just about to finish Camp Boyfriend, a YA by J.K. Rock—which is pretty cool, btw—and after that I’ll be reading Roar and Liv, an Under the Never Sky short by Veronica Rossi, and tomorrow, my plan is to start Lisa Amowitz’s Breaking Glass.
Me: Do you prefer Twitter or Facebook?
J.A.: Facebook—but only on my personal profile because my page(s) drives me nuts with all its advertising offers and mixed up comments.
Me: ;) Fantasy or Paranormal?
J.A.: Hmmmm … Well, I love urban fantasy, and I LOVE fantasy books like Throne of Glass, but I’m also a HUGE paranormal fan—so, can we call it a tie?
Me: We can definitely call it a tie. Any tips you’d like to give aspiring writers hoping to be published one day?
J.A.: Write until your fingers bleed and you’re so exhausted you want to cry. Once you’ve reached that point, congratulations, you’re on the first rung of the ladder to the right path.
And around that, RESEARCH! Yes, research the industry. Don’t assume everyone else is going to give you all the answers. Get up off your hide and find them for yourself. I mean, why wouldn’t you want to be educated in something you’re hoping to be part of? Surely it’s better than going in blind?
Me: Good advice. When you’re not writing, you are?
J.A.: Easy one: READING!!!
If the meek can become deadly, the strongest can be weak.
For Ethan Holloway, his mission to find a missing werewolf should be simple. Crack a few heads, bust a few chops and the solution always reveals itself. Always.
Not this time.
Ethan’s reputation precedes him, and because it does, someone is ready. Waiting. Unbeknownst to Ethan, he’s about to go down. Hard. Against a foe he never suspected and in a world he never imagined could be real.
What awaits Ethan is a fight not only for his reputation, but also his pack, his female, and his life. If he survives, damage control will become priority number one.
If he survives.
Because even Ethan’s not sure he’s strong enough to take on an entire race all by himself.
Especially one hell bent on exposing who and what he is in the name of sport.
CAGED Buy Links:
And if you’d like check out BLUE MOON, the 2nd book in The Holloway Pack Stories, it’s on sale now for $0.99 here :
In addition Ms. Belfield is having a Giveaway for CAGED!
Want to win? ENTER HERE:
Good luck everyone!
About J.A Belfield:
One day, a character and scene popped into J. A. Belfield’s head, and she started controlling the little people inside her imagination as though she were the puppet master and they her toys. Questions arose: What would happen if …? How would they react if …? Who would they meet if …? Before she knew it, a singular scene had become an entire movie. The characters she controlled began to hold conversations. Their actions reflected the personalities she bestowed upon them. Within no time, they had a life, a lover, a foe, family … they had Become.
One day, she wrote down her thoughts. She’s yet to stop.
J. A. Belfield lives in Solihull, England, with her husband, two children, three cats, and a dog. She writes paranormal romance with a second love for urban fantasy.
- “Caged” or “A Pre-Release Review” (everonword.wordpress.com)
- Angry Wolves – A guest post from Ethan Holloway and J.A. Belfield (alexnaderwrites.wordpress.com)
August 20, 2013 | Categories: Author, Blog Tours, Books, J Taylor Publishing, New Releases | Tags: 2013 Adult Paranormal Novel releases, adult paranormal, Blue moon, Book, CAGED, Facebook, Giveaway, Holloway Pack, J A Belfield, J. Taylor Publishing, New Adult novels for 2013, The Holloway Pack Stories, Twitter | 2 Comments »
March, for me, has been an awesome reading month. I’m crazy late, but I finally started The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare. And when I say started, I really mean finished– the whole series. Except of course The City of Heavenly Fire — not due out until March ’014 ;(
This is one of the best series of books I’ve read in a really, really long time, and I can’t believe I’m just now getting around to it. So — here are some covers of the series to drool over, and if you’re a YA fan who hasn’t read these books — do yourself a favor. Jace might be one of the best male characters I’ve ever read. Ever. Yeah, that good.
(couldn’t get a good pic of City of Lost Souls but that cover is a beauty too.)
March 27, 2013 | Categories: Author, BLOG HOPS, Books, Current Reads, Young Adult Novels | Tags: best ya books, Book, Book series, Cassandra Clare, City of Bones, City of Heavenly Fire, current reads, Infernal Devices, Jace, laney mcmann, Mortal Instruments, YA Highway, young adult novels, young adult urban fantasy | 6 Comments »
HA! It’s finally here!
THE FIRE BORN NOVELS
Normal people don’t believe their nightmares stalk them. They don’t fall in love with boys who don’t exist, either.
Seventeen-year-old Layla Labelle, though, is far from normal. Her delusions walk the earth. Her hallucinations hunt her, and her skin heats to a burn every time her anger flares.
Or is that all in her head?
Layla doesn’t know what to believe any more because if none of that’s true, Max MacLarnon must be an illusion, and her heart must still be broken.
No matter how much she wants to believe Max is real, doing so would mean everything else is, too. How, then, is that possible?
The answers lie in an age-old legend the supernatural aren’t prepared to reveal, and with a curse that could tear Layla and Max apart forever—if it doesn’t kill them both first.
In TIED, book one in the Fire Born trilogy, learning the truth will mean fighting an arsenal of demons, and being with Max will put Layla on a path toward her own destruction.
Just how far will Layla go to protect the one she loves?
The answer may never be far enough … away.
RELEASING IN PRINT & E-BOOK SEPTEMBER 9, 2013
More info at J. Taylor Publishing
Add it to Goodreads
So … What do you think??
February 25, 2013 | Categories: A Fire Born Novel, Books, Cover Reveals, J Taylor Publishing, New Releases, TIED, Young Adult Novels | Tags: art, Author, Blurb, Book, Book cover, E-book, Fire Born, J. Taylor Publishing, laney mcmann, Layla & Max, Literature, new releases for 2013, new young adult releases, Publishing, Teen books, teen novels, teens, The Fire Born Novels, The Fire Born Trilogy, TIED, TIED by Laney McMann, young adult novels, young adult paranormal romance, young adult urban fantasy | 5 Comments »
Here’s how the THE NEXT BIG THING blog hop works. I get tagged to answer a bunch of question about my current book, (while simulataneously getting more word out), thanks to J.A. Belfield for the tip, and then I tag YOU, and you get to share in the love on your own blog to get the word out about YOUR WIP.
I questioned being involved in the hop considering my current WIP is kind of under wraps, while my current finished book is on its way to publication–but, I thought this would be fun.
SO …. I’m going to pretend that my current finished novel is actually a WIP–even though it’s not. K? K!
What is the working title of your book?
The title of my book is TIED, and it’s the first book in The Fire Born Novels series.
Where did the idea come from for the book?
This is one of those questions that’s hard to answer. Ideas sort of pop into my head and I run with them. Some work, some don’t–The Fire Born worked.
What is the genre of your book?
I write young adult dark/urban fantasy, paranormal romance, with bit of mythology mixed in.
Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
No clue. If I had to choose, it would probably be from people who aren’t even actors. I think it’s really hard to peg the right face/personality to a character you’ve dreamed up in your head.
What in one sentence is the synopsis of your book?
Yikes! Honestly, I don’t even think I’m allowed to tell you guys that yet—-under contract and all that. BUT–soon, so very soon.;) So, I’ll leave you with the hook that’s flying around on all my social media pages:
How far would you go … to protect the one you love?
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency/publisher?
All of The Fire Born Novels will be published by J. Taylor Publishing.
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
Hm … first draft took three months. All subsequent drafts took — forever. Seriously. A longgg time.
What other books would you compare this story to in your genre?
I wouldn’t. Funny–I was just thinking about this. My play off fantasy and paranormal feels a bit different than what I read–and I read a lot. I guess the readers will have to decide ultimately. But, my intention is always to speak from my own voice and let it roll. Whatever comes, comes. I’m not aiming to compare my books to anyone else’s.
Who or what inspired you to write this book?
Another loaded question that’s difficult to answer. I’m not sure that any one particular thing inspired me, necessarily. A ton of factors led me to continue to write this book and see it through to the end. Not all my novels have made it to completion. TIED spoke to me in a way nothing else has. So I guess you could say, the story itself inspired me.
What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
The blurb will be out very soon, and I can’t spoil that, so I’ll just say that if the hook I mentioned before intrigues you–just wait
*** That’s it for me. Anyone want to jump in and let us know what all your blood, sweat and tears are pouring into? Leave me a link so I can check your book out!! ***
January 23, 2013 | Categories: Author, BLOG HOPS, Blog Tours, Blogging, Books, J Taylor Publishing, Publishing, WIP, Writing | Tags: Arts, Blog, Book, Fiction, laney mcmann, Literature, new authors, new book releases, novel writing, Publishing, Romance, The Fire Born Novels, The Next Big Thing Blog Hop, TIED A Fire Born Novel, TIED by Laney McMann, WIP, Working title, ya fantasy author, YA Fiction, YA paranormal romance author | 2 Comments »
We make so many promises as writers with a hope we can fulfill them all.
**As I sit finishing my final blurb for TIED, I’m reminded of this fact. Thought I’d share it.
January 13, 2013 | Categories: Author, Inspiration, J Taylor Publishing, Novel Writing, Quotes, Thoughts | Tags: blurbs, Book, excerpts, J. Taylor Publishing, laney mcmann, teens, The Fire Born Novels, TIED A Fire Born Novel, TIED by Laney McMann, YA Fiction | Leave A Comment »
Like many writers, I have spent the last few years trying to ‘do it all.’ Whether I’m drafting another blog post, tinkering with Twitter, shouting out to writers on Triberr, checking my Facebook profile, posting on my Facebook author page, pinning on Pinterest, reading the dozens of emails I receive daily, or finishing my novel revisions, everyday is filled to the rim. In my mind, the most important of these is my novel. It’s the reason for everything else. Yet everything else seems to overwhelm it most of the time.
I read all day long, in one form or another. In order to write well, you must read. A lot. Preferably in your genre, although reading in general is the point. I try to stay current with the latest books, all the advice on book marketing, social media reach, blog hits, and on and on. It’s endless.
Yesterday I read an article that stated people aren’t reading less in the digital age, instead people are actually reading more. Wanting more. More to download. More, more, more. Readers want books NOW. How are they reading them all? Who knows.
What it means for writers is what concerns me. Many authors are now attempting to hammer out three….four, five books a year to stay in the game.
The industry standard has forever been…one book per year.
But with the introduction, and popularity, of ereaders the standard is changing. Rapidly.
For me, and many others, that’s an issue. Besides the fact that I write at turtle speed, and revise at snail, I’ve worked myself to near exhaustion trying to do everything, and be everywhere. How are we supposed to do it all? We can’t. And we shouldn’t try to either.
Balance is the key.
I’ve talked about balance a lot in prior posts, but I didn’t know how to attain it. I’ve had to force myself to step back, and breathe. Step back and realize that NO ONE can do it all, and do it well. Not going to happen. Not for long anyway. I still believe that through all the chatter and advice, all the constant information flying everywhere, that our main goal as writers should be creating good content.
We can market until we are blue in the face and crawling. Put our names out everywhere and brand until everyone knows it. But none of that will matter if our books suck. Writing is hard enough without trying to master social media.
I know we as writers are a helpful and supportive group. We want to help each other succeed. We want to feel like someone else gets it, and we aren’t wandering around alone searching for answers in the dark. So we read everything, follow a hundred blogs, and basically overwhelm ourselves with information. Not the best mindset to have when we are trying to write an 80,000 word novel.
Slow down. Really.
I don’t have this thing figured out either, but it occurs to me that a few things are obvious.
**Write your books and write them well. No good book—no reason for social media.
**Write your blog posts, tweet your shout outs, engage. But put a time limit on it.
**Back to writing.
Remember the reason why you are doing all of this. Is it to write stories? To get lost in those worlds? Yeah? Go get lost then, and create the best worlds you can.
The other stuff at the end of the day is secondary. Important, yes, but still secondary.
So tell me, what part of this industry have you found the most difficult?
**first posted in May 2012 before I landed the book contract, so let’s add that once thrown into the mix, things got busier. The difference? Now, I feel like everything else finally matters.
November 26, 2012 | Categories: Author, Blogging, Editing, Inspiration, Publishing, Social Media, Writer, Writing | Tags: Arts, Blog, bloggers, Book, book marketing, E-book, editing, exhaustion, Facebook, goal accomplishment, laney mcmann, Pinterest, Reading, Revisions, Social media, Triberr, Twitter, Writer, Writers Resources, Writing, Writing process, Writing Tips | 12 Comments »
I was about half in love with her by the time we sat down. That’s the thing about girls. Every time they do something pretty… you fall half in love with them, and then you never know where the hell you are.
A friend reminded me of Salinger today — I had to share one of my favorite excerpts.
September 7, 2012 | Categories: Author, Writing | Tags: Adolescence, art, Author, Book, Catcher, Catcher in the Rye, Holden Caulfield, J D Salinger, laney mcmann, Rye, Shopping, Writer, Writer Resources | Leave A Comment »
You wrote your first book. Now you’re marketing it on every social media site you can think of. Or maybe you’re on submission and you’ve chewed your fingernails to bits with nervous energy at the thought of rejection. Either way, you’ve started your second book right? Right?
The tale goes that most writers need to have between three and five books in the marketplace before they will take off and be seen. If they do at all. There are exceptions, of course. So are you writing those three to five books and beyond, or are you putting all your efforts toward promoting your first, and only, book?
I won’t lie and say that I didn’t go into a state of panic when I went on submission, or that I didn’t freeze into a no writing phase for about a week afterwards. I did panic. I did freeze. Then I realized I was wasting both time and energy, and I continued on with TORN, the sequel to my first book, TIED, now on submission. I realized that regardless of what happens with TIED, I needed to move forward with writing. It was the only thing I could control. And if everything did work out with book one, I would need to have book two in the wings, finished, ready and waiting to go live.
The turnover with e-book technology is simply too quick. What I learned when I continued on with book two was that my anxiety decreased, my reason for writing in the first place resumed, and I fell back in love with my story. For me, that in itself is all I can ever ask for. To love what I’m doing regardless of where it leads.
Now, I won’t lie and say that marketing doesn’t scare me to death, or make me uncomfortable. It does. And I am only doing a fraction of marketing now compared to what I know will be required of me when I do publish. But even then, a balance will need to be struck. Because in order to sell books, you have to continue writing them. There needs to be something to buy within a reasonable amount of time after you’ve created a buzz with your first masterpiece. So market away, submit away, but remember, this is a writing game we’re in. We need not forget that.
So, what about you? Are you in a terrified state on submission? Marketing your Indie book? How’s it going?
August 21, 2012 | Categories: Author, Publishing, Writing, Writing Tips | Tags: Amazon Kindle, Arts, Author, Book, E-book, Fiction, goal accomplishment, laney mcmann, Marketing, Publish, Publishing, Self-publishing, Shopping, Social media, WIP, Writers Resources, Writing, Writing Tips, ya fantasy author, YA paranormal romance author | 1 Comment »
I invest a ludicrous amount of time reading. Whether I read novels, blogs, craft books or research material, I always try to find useful or inspiring bits of information each week. And then I save them. The talk is swinging back around to the topic of Publishing. Here are this weeks links:
Author Nathan Bransford talks about The Biggest Challenges in the New Era of Publishing
Author Anne R. Allen once again has a fantastic post Indie or Traditional Publishing? Don’t Take Sides Take Your Time
Author Kristen Lamb Big Six Publishing is Dead — Welcome the Massive Three
WRITE ON, WRITERS!
May 14, 2012 | Categories: Author, Blogging, Publishing, Self Publishing, Writer, Writing | Tags: Anne R. Allen, Arts, Author, Bob Mayer, Book, book stores, Brick and mortar, e-readers, Facebook, Kristen Lamb, laney mcmann, Literary agent, Nathan Bransford, Self-publishing, Social media, Traditional Publishing, Writer, Writing, Writing Tips | Leave A Comment »
I invest a ludicrous amount of time reading. Whether I read novels, blogs, craft books or research material, I always try to find useful or inspiring bits of information each week. And then I save them. Here are this weeks links:
Joanna Penn has a great post on her blog this week, The Creative Penn, Traditional Publishing And Self-Publishing Are Not Mutually Exclusive
David Gaughran from Let’s Get Digital talks about Publishing this week in his post, Was Self-Publishing The Right Decision?
And lastly, Indie Author Lindsay Buroker has an interesting interview with Author Liana Brooks up on her blog. Check it out here: Why One Author Chose A Small Press over Self-Publishing
WRITE ON, WRITERS.
April 27, 2012 | Categories: Author, Publishing, Self Publishing, Writer, Writing | Tags: Amazon Kindle, Author, Blog, Book, Business, Creative Penn, David Gaughran, E-book, Joanna Penn, laney mcmann, Liana Brooks, Lindsay Buroker, Publishing, Self-publishing, Small Press, Social media, Twitter, Writing Advice, Writing Tips, YA paranormal romance author | 1 Comment »