Saturday, 1 August 2015

Cover Reveal: FIND ME IF YOU DARE


I'm so excited to share the cover for Vicki Leigh's upcoming YA dark urban fantasy, FIND ME IF YOU DARE! Published by Curiosity Quills, December 1, 2015.

And if the cover art is any indication at how creepy and chilling this second book of the Dreamcatcher series is, I recommend reading this one with the lights on and NEVER when you're in the house alone...at night.

Feeling brave? Add it on Goodreads here.

To celebrate the cover reveal Vicki Leigh is having an awesome 22 BOOK GIVEAWAY! Check out all the details on her tumbr page. (vickileighauthor.tumblr.com). 

But first, a little bit about FIND ME IF YOU DARE.

They may have won the first battle, but the Apocalypse has just begun.

Five weeks have passed since the battle that left Rome and Columbus in ruins. Sheltered in the hidden city of Caelum, Daniel and Kayla train alongside over one hundred Magus and Protectors, hoping that their unified ranks will be enough to take down their greatest threat yet: Richard, his followers, and his horde of Nightmares. Then a fallen comrade is returned to Caelum with a message carved into his chest and a note referencing the four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, and Daniel knows their time for training is over.

Finally understanding Richard’s plans for Kayla and the three other Magus born on Halloween, Daniel and the rest of Caelum’s volunteers scout the U.S. in a desperate attempt to stop their enemy before he can unleash his first Horseman. But when massive attacks claim thousands of lives, people all over the world begin to fall ill—including those Daniel and Kayla care about the most.

With the Horseman of Pestilence released, Daniel knows it’s time to step aside and let Kayla take the lead. Only she has the power to rival her father’s. But when Richard’s plot turns out to be darker than they imagined, their fight is met with more death and destruction—and an enemy who might be unbeatable, after all.


Phew! Awesome, right? Okay, scroll down for the spectacular cover.
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Adopted at three-days-old by a construction worker and a stay-at-home mom, Vicki Leigh grew up in a small suburb of Akron, Ohio where she learned to read by the age of four and considered being sent to her room for punishment as an opportunity to dive into another book. By the sixth grade, Vicki penned her first, full-length screenplay. If she couldn’t be a writer, Vicki would be a Hunter (think Dean and Sam Winchester) or a Jedi. Her favorite place on earth is Hogwarts (she refuses to believe it doesn’t exist), and her favorite dreams include solving cases alongside Sherlock Holmes.

You can also find Vicki on Twitter!



Tuesday, 14 July 2015

Cursed and Curated: The Asp of Ascension Blog Tour


 

My very first blog tour!


Whoo-hoo! I love road trips.

Grab a bag of donuts and a coffee and settle back with your elbow resting on the window because you're in for a delightful jaunt through some of the most beautiful blogs, hosted by gracious authors and book lovers alike. There's contests and tons of Q&A's, and maybe a shocking confession to two...maybe.

Enjoy the ride!


Asp of Ascension BR Myers

July 13: Calgary Kid Critic (review)

July 14: A Portia Adams Adventure (review)

July 15: Writing on Writing (guest post)

July 16: Membrane (Q&A)

July 17: Adventures in YA Romance (guest post)

July 18: Fab Book Reviews (review)

July 19: A Portia Adams Adventure (Q&A)

July 20: Calgary Kid Critic (Q&A)

July 21: Fab Book Reviews (Q&A)





Thanks to all the amazing bloggers and authors involved and be sure to spend a little time roaming around their sites.

Don’t forget to preorder your copy! Asp of Ascension is available on Amazon, Chapters, and of course, from your friendly neighbourhood indie bookstore.

 

Sunday, 5 July 2015

Hosting a Writing Workshop For Teens

Last month I had the pleasure of hosting a writing workshop for teens at the gorgeous Halifax Central Library.



halifaxcentrallibrary.ca


halifaxcentrallibrary.ca


Have you been to the Central Library? It's so frickin' spectacular that people (especially the bookish types with particular appreciation for libraries) cry their eyeballs out as they walk around its four levels.

Seriously. It's that bee-u-tee-ful.

The workshop session was small. I had six potential best sellers staring at me, waiting for my wisdom. Luckily there were cupcakes and drinks to provide a distraction.

I introduced myself and gave a speedy recap on how I became published, emphasizing my success on Wattpad and how it gave me the confidence to send my manuscript to a local publisher.

Then I did a couple of polls to get everyone talking. Warning, these kids were total smarty pants and I was blown away by their brain power.

#1. How many of you have written a book?

Everyone raised their hands.

#2. What's the last book you read?

Saint Anything
The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
House of Blue Leaves (play)
World of War Craft (the complete series)
Julie of the Wolves
Pretty Little Liars


#3. Which book have you reread the most?

Twilight
The Book Thief
The Fault In Our Stars
Frankenstein
The Hunchback of Notre-Dame
Warcraft

#4. What's your favourite social media?

Three said Instagram
The other half said Twitter

#5. Is there a book you wished had never been made into a movie?

Percy Jackson
Divergent
The Hobbit

This was a great way to get the teens talking about books and reading. As you can see by their answers this was an eclectic group of thinkers. I loved how they bounced ideas off each other. We talked for at least half an hour.

Next we did a few writing activities.

I asked them to write a six word story and gave them three minutes. Here are a few of the examples.

I'm warning you, don't come any closer.

Butterflies hate dragonflies for one reason.

He wasn't asleep, he was dead.

She smiled then pulled the trigger.

Holy brainiacs! These kids blew me away. What a wicked bunch!  

Then I spoke about the most common pitfalls for a beginning writer; excessive description, lack of a distinct voice, and too much backstory in the first few chapters.

The kids had the most questions about the first issue, so I focused on that and did a quick activity to emphasize the importance of description.

I asked them to think of one of their favourite fictional characters, then I had them list five traits that best described them and the rest of the group would try and guess who they were talking about.

This was a blast! Not only were the characters incredibly varied (Percy Jackson to Elizabeth Bennet) but in every list, none of the kids wrote down a PHYSICAL characteristic.

I used this exercise to point out that the most memorable traits aren't appearances. So never EVER have your character stand in front of a mirror and describe themselves. It's a waste of space and as one teen pointed out, when you're reading along you have an image in your mind so when the author throws in a pair of green eyes or blonde hair it takes you out of the story for a moment.

See? Smarty pants ;)  

As the session drew to a close, I answered any questions they had about publishing. The kids had lots of great insight and were eager to talk about their own projects. We even brain stormed a title for a girl's short story.

I ended the session by giving away a prize and drew a name at random for an autographed copy of Butterflies Don't Lie. Yay!

I hope this helps you plan your own workshop.

Do you have any ideas to share for workshops? What activities worked best for you?




Top Five Things You Should Know About Nefertari Hughes


A young girl goes missing without a trace.

A lost queen's cherished treasure is stolen.

And a thousands years old curse comes to light.

...And in the middle of the mystery is sixteen-year-old Nefertari Hughes. But who is this sixteen year old with a penchant for finding trouble?




Asp of Ascension is now available for pre-order as paperback and ebook!

Special Collectors Edition Paperback from Fierce Ink Press

Amazon (Canada)

Amazon (US)

Chapters


Saturday, 27 June 2015

Top Ten Ridiculous Moments in Jurassic World


Ok, I'll admit it, it's my own fault. I bought the movie ticket. 

There were a lot of things that bothered me about this movie. I mean, did the British assistant have to die in such a long and brutal fashion? And if you're going to recycle a script, make sure to keep the good parts of that original script—you know like characters with depth and a plot that makes sense.

The one change that would have made this movie one million times more interesting would have been to switch Dallas Howard's and Chris Pratt's characters so that she'd be the dino trainer and he'd be the uptight corporate manager.

Anyway, let's get started....

Here are the top ten ridiculous moments in Jurassic World:

#1. The opening scene shows a kid looking at dinosaurs through a view finder. A view finder? He's on his way to a park with live dinosaurs and magic bubble cars and he's captivated by a toy from the 1950's.

#2. Chris Pratt's character is like the velociraptor whisperer or something. Where did he learn this skill to train dinosaurs? He used to be in the navy. No, really, that's the explanation in the movie.




#3. Vincent D'Onofrio from Law & Order: Criminal Minds, shows up and his character makes even more outrageous conclusions based on connections between random facts than detective Goren ever did. Remember the episode when detective Goren looked at the murder victim's teeth, determined her gums were flossed more vigorously on the left and therefore she was right handed and couldn't have grabbed the gun during the struggle? Sorry, my mind wondered there. That happened a lot during the movie too.

#4. The main reason the lab has created this monster dinosaur is to keep people interested in the park with new and scaring animals. They claim kids are getting tired of the T-Rex. Um...no. Sorry, I don't buy that. People are still waiting up to a half hour in line to go on the Flying Dumbo ride at Disney.

#5. The only one guarding the cage where the super secret and deadly huge dinosaur is kept is an overweight guard eating a donut. Spoiler: when he and Chris Pratt are running from the dinosaur, he's the one who gets eaten.

#6. After the brothers survive being almost eaten alive and a jump into a ravine, they collapse on the shore and laugh and punch each other in the arms as soft piano music plays. Whhhaat? Shouldn't they be crying and covered in their own sh*t?



#7. While I enjoy Jimmy Fallon, his guest spot was so weird since it took place right before the kids are about to be eaten. It's like the movie couldn't decide if it was scary or funny. The characters seemed to only have two emotions: scared and running or scared and being frozen to the spot, depending on the type of background music.



#8. There is only one helicopter to escape the island.

#9. I think three hundred Starbucks close up shots were enough, don't you?

#10. Dallas Howard's white dress didn't get dirty until the last ten minutes of the movie. The woman is running through the jungle!




BONUS: With all the technology on the island, cell phones and walkie talkies never work when it's crucial to relay information.

What did you think of Jurassic World?  



Sunday, 14 June 2015

How Comic Books Shaped My Latest YA Novel

With Asp of Ascension about to release on July 21, I share some of my thoughts on writing a mystery and why comic books are so fascinating. Plus, my dog Cody is sleeping in the corner and totally adorable.






What's your writing inspiration for today?

Wednesday, 27 May 2015

Cover Reveal: Asp of Ascension

I'm thrilled to pull back the curtains and finally show off the cover for my YA mystery, Asp of Ascension. Available July 21, from Fierce Ink Press.

But first...a little bit about the story.

About Asp of Ascension


Nefertari “Terry” Hughes has three rules for surviving high school:
 
#1 Don’t attract attention.
 
#2 Don’t get involved.
 
#3 Don’t make trouble.
 
A year after the accident that left her disabled and took her mother’s life, sixteen-year-old Terry just wants to keep her head down and survive her new high school. When she catches the eye of cute basketball star Zach, all hopes of flying under the radar are gone.
 
She is thrust even further into the spotlight when Fraser, the editor of the school newspaper, learns her father Mr. Hughes is the renowned archaeologist overseeing the new Egyptian display at the museum, which is rumored to include Cleopatra’s sarcophagus. When Fraser stumbles upon the fifty-year-old mystery of a girl who vanished in the museum and Terry’s father falls into a mysterious coma, Terry’s caught up in a whirlwind of events that leads all the way back to ancient times.
 
Before long, the stakes become too high for Terry to ignore. Tossing aside her rules for survival, she teams up with Fraser and her candy-loving new friend Maude to solve the mystery and save her father — before she loses everything.
 
Okay, now you can take a peek. Scroll down for the awesome! 
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I'm over the moon thrilled with Emma Dolan's design. I love how it reminds me of the Lois Duncan thrillers I grew up reading.
 
Now available for pre-order Chapters and Amazon.

Check out the inspiration board on Pinterest.
Add it on Goodreads.
 
Today is also the launch of the Asp of Ascension T-shirt campaign. There are lots of options–men’s, women’s, tank tops, and youth sizes. Help spread the word, because the book can’t print until we meet our minimum!
 
 
 
 
 
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