Before Dawn Breaks: Escape the Winter! An IR Book Giveaway

Thanks to all who entered January's Goodreads giveaway. We're doing it again to celebrate the print release of Before Dawn Breaks, my romantic suspense novel!

First the run down:
Alexandra Lyons is a cold, seductive assassin, skilled in the art of killing. Camilla Angelson is a bubbly writer enjoying the quiet life as a recent graduate from college. Both women are the same person. Unfortunately, her former employer, the secret government bureau that hired her, knows this all too well.

Josh Mayer is a former secret service agent looking to pick up the pieces of his life after a messy divorce from a cheating wife and a job of putting his life on the line. Doubling as a restaurateur and an "unofficial" undercover agent, the beautiful female target he is protecting may be the same one he is willing to risk his life and, most of all, his heart to save.

Soon, Josh must put his life on the line to evade an unknown killer that ties them all the way to a money-laundering scheme involving the newest presidential candidate to the White House. Meanwhile, Alexandra's heart is warmed with Josh at her side as she slowly remembers the dark past she left behind.

I'm tossing in some other books into the fray for your reading pleasure. One of which is a favorite of mine by Latrivia Nelson called Dmitry's Closet. This was my first book from Ms. Nelson and I got simply hooked from her awesome storytelling and compelling characters (including Dmitry himself, le sigh). This book is the introduction of her ongoing series including her newest release Anatoly Medlov: Complete Reign which can be read as a standalone story. This book comes from my personal reader shelf. If a book hooks me I buy two just in case I want to loan it out or read one copy and have one in new condition. This was kept nice and new while I read the ebook edition so you'll be getting a brand spanking new version. :-D

Since my book collected is pushing me out of house and home, I have to let some books go to make some space (*sniffles*) so give these books a nice new home. :-)

Before Dawn Breaks and Dmitry's Closet are romantic suspenses while Frost on My Window and The Politics of Love are more contemporary romances ('Frost' is a little more dramatic women's fiction). All of these books come in one bundle so enter now for a chance to have these books on your very own shelf.

All you have to do is leave a comment to be entered.

Folks who follow me here at AWD, on Twitter , or on Facebook will get an extra entry and folks who repost this contest will get an extra, extra entry. ;-)

Normally I host my giveaways via my mailing list members so if you want to sign up for those and for current news about me and my works (including recommended reads off my shelf) mosey on over to this link and join:

Contest closes February 28th, so enter soon! 

Happy reading!

AWD Spotlight: Jon F. Merz - Writer, Producer, Ninja, Renaissance Man

This month at A Writer's Dream we have an extra special guest spotlight.

Jon F. Merz is not only an author but he is also a jack of all trades: writing, producing and even honing his own skills in the ninja martial arts which he uses in many of his own books. As readers here will remember, my first taste of Jon's books was when I read his standalone sci-fi/thriller/suspense novel Parallax (after enjoying his short story Rip) which has become a keeper on my shelf of favorites. Since then I have become hooked on Jon's Lawson Vampire books (a.k.a. The Fixer Files series) and on a day's worth of book glomming, grabbed up half his books available at Smashwords. Jon has since become one of my favorite authors and I am honored to have him stop by here at A Writer's Dream for his January blog tour to celebrate his current release, The Kensei: A Vampire Lawson Novel, available now from St. Martin's Press.

Check out the Q&A after the jump!

Excuse Me, Miss by Phillip Thomas Duck

2011 IR Reading Challenge
2011 POC Reading Challenge

4.5 - This is a 5 star story for me and my only real complaint is that I wish it was longer and preferably a series!

Mr. Duck wrote from a female perspective pretty impressively while showcasing 'fidelity anthropologist'/sexy decoy Victoria "Vicki" Frost as our narrator and main character. Vicki works to test the fidelity of married men and give their wives some comfort but at the same time, she is hiding secrets of her own which start to unravel when she happens to fall for one of the husbands she's testing.

This was an awesome story. I really liked the way Mr. Duck wrote Vicki as a whip smart yet vulnerable character. Even the guy she falls for is complex yet a good guy who tries to do right that I found myself rooting for them despite the context of their relationship.

There were instances where the transition confused me a little but overall it didn't affect my thoughts on the story. I really enjoyed it and would've loved to have seen more adventures with Vicki and how her situation turned out in the end considering where it left off. I hope Mr. Duck considers giving us another story!

Excuse Me, Miss is currently available in the Kindle Bookstore at

2011 - A Look Ahead

Greetings programs! (Yep, still on my Tron kick ;-))

This year has been rocky for me so far. My computer went ka-boom right smack on the 1st of the month so I've been navigating work in some interesting ways. Besides borrowing a comp from a family member, I'm making heavy use of my Blackberry. For instance, I started writing a novella on it. And not just any novella, a cyberpunk romance. Wild! Bring on the Philip K. Dick inspirations! Technology has come a long way and as I'm rewriting/editing some of my works (too be listed below) right here on the phone. Thank you for Microsoft Office on the go. It's also a great backup device for files I want to bring around with me. I can't help but think how much communications technology is speeding ahead.

This past Christmas, the e-reader market exploded, Amazon went Hollywood, the CES conference that took place just the other week was bursting with upcoming tablet devices and writers are becoming the storytellers of yore once again via online sales. Dragonpage has a wonderful podcast entry on this and the changing face of the publishing industry. I'm looking forward to see how it goes because it looks to be a very wild but interesting ride.

Looking ahead, I have a few projects in the works coming up early this year.

Longer works 
Inheritance of Ashes (Ashen Twilight Series #3 - Final book) 
Cimmerian City (Cimmerian Series #1)
A Feast of Shadows (Cimmerian Series #2)

Short Fiction 
Uthiel's Embrace (Re-release)
A Day in the Life of Simplicity (Re-release, new ending)

Now, most of my works will be released indie style with all trimmings (editing, professional layouts, etc.) in both ebook and print. I've received a few emails from my readers (Thank you, guys!) asking about when Cimmerian City will be making a comeback.

Cimmerian City was my first novel and probably the one I'm most proud of because it premiered with such gusto for me that it will always hold a place in my heart. Looking back, I think it needed some tightening in the story and a lil bit of expansion. A lot of time has changed in between the premiere and when it went out of print. Much of the climate I describe in the book dealing with corporations and government have come to a head and I'm adding a little bit more tweaks to tie in. Also, I've grown a bit stronger as a writer (at least I like to think so!) since the first release and I think I can bring a better polish with what I've learned  from my writing mentors and from what I've been teaching my students at the novel writing classes. I also like to take my time in making sure that the end product is the best it can be story content wise and editing, which means a few eyes have comb through the text! The last thing I want to do is have a reader disconnect from the story because of some errors! So that's why it's taking me a little time to polish but be sure that both stories in the Cimmerian Series universe will premiere very soon as well the conclusion to the Ashen Twilight series - Inheritance of Ashes.

'Inheritance' is going to be a heavy one. I'm already fussing over a lot of details and backstory because some revelations will be revealed in the first chapter and I want to make sure everything connects up. So expect to see the timeline updated along with some other extra special goodies to come. I'm thinking about adding the timeline and character info in the last book, that way it won't be spoiled for anyone who's still on the first two books. :-)

I'll pop in with an updated post in the middle of the year to see what's ahead for late 2011. Who knows what new developments we'll have by then. Maybe flying cars manned by e-readers and tablets? ;-)