Tag Archives: giveaway

September Book Giveaway!

Ladies and gentlemen, it’s time once again to win a free book!  This month, is J.S. Frankel’s Outcasts.  Just click here!

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August Book Giveaway!

Everyone likes to win free books, right?  I know I do!  Just click here.

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Giveaway Alert!

I’ve recently done an interview with Susie Murphy about her new book, A Class Apart, and she’s giving away a free ebook copy!  Be sure to enter by visiting the pinned post on my Facebook page or commenting on the interview on my blog.  A random winner will be drawn on Saturday!

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Author Interview (and Giveaway!): Susie Murphy

Susie Murphy’s new book, A Class Apart, is a brand-new release on Amazon.  Read to the end for your chance to win a copy!

Is there anything that has driven you to write historical fiction instead of something set in modern times?

I have always viewed books as a means of escaping from reality, so in general I’m not as interested in reading or writing about the times we live in. I want to be swept away to another world or another era and get caught up in the lives of people and places that are different from what’s outside my front door. That’s probably why I enjoy fantasy a lot, but I adore historical fiction most of all: the fashion, the big houses, how the people travelled, how they communicated. Even though it’s our own world, it’s poles apart from how we live our lives now. And I just love the idea of attending a ball in a flowing gown and being courted by a charming gentleman! That is, of course, an idealised view of the way things were; I can’t turn a blind eye to the social injustices and poor health conditions of the times, and I do highlight the contrast between the upper classes and lower classes in my book. But it’s all so fascinating – I can’t get enough of it.

Susie Murphy

How much research do you have to do in order to make these books happen?

Tons of research needs to go into writing historical fiction. You’d think I’d have realised this early on in the process but, no, I’d been writing my series for years before that obvious penny dropped. In the summer of 2016, it occurred to me that I should really double check some of the details in my book…and there followed twelve gruelling months of revisions. I had the noble titles totally wrong, my scullery maids were doing the wrong duties, the term grandfather clock didn’t even exist (not until 1876) – I could go on and on. And what I read up on inheritance law almost scuppered the premise of the whole series! I learned my lesson the hard way, and now I don’t include anything in my manuscripts that hasn’t been thoroughly fact-checked.

But there needs to be a balance as well – I don’t put every detail I’ve researched into my books. I read as extensively as I can on a subject to give myself a full understanding of it, and then only include what’s relevant to the story itself. The research provides the framework, but the story still needs to be the focus.

I see you don’t like tea or coffee (gasp!), so what do you like to drink?

I do get very scandalised reactions about this and have even been offered boiling water as an alternative. But I just don’t like hot drinks! I have discovered in the past year that I can be persuaded to have a hot chocolate – but it needs to have marshmallows, and I’ll want a glass of water to go with it. What do I actually like though? Give me two big glasses of milk with dinner and I’m happy. J

Where and when do you do your best writing?

We have a large armchair in the sitting room that has become my nest over the years. More often than not, it is scattered with notebooks, my laptop and a cosy blanket. (However, I have recently had to relinquish it to my husband for the World Cup, as it has the best view for the TV.)

When I’m on a roll, I can write at any time of the day. I like to accomplish something early before breakfast and can happily work on into the wee hours too. The mid-afternoon slump is usually my least productive time.

a class apart

What book are you reading right now?

I’m actually reading a contemporary book at the moment (the irony!). It’s After You by Jojo Moyes, and it was a gift for my birthday. I’m also listening to the third volume of Stephen King’s The Dark Tower series on audiobook in the car. While I do read loads of historical fiction (my last book was The Cottingley Secret by Hazel Gaynor), I find it’s nice to mix things up now and then.

What’s life like when you aren’t writing?

I’ve been a piano teacher for the past nine years. This generally includes many conversations that go along the lines of, ‘Yes, I know you recognise that as a hashtag, but in music we call it a sharp.’ One of the funniest things about being a teacher is when you bump into a student outside of school and they look at you like you’re an alien – and that’s when you realise that up to that point they believed you existed only in your classroom. There are plenty of challenges in teaching but in the end it’s worth it when you see a student progress and, more importantly, when they see it too.

When can we expect the next installment in the series?

I do have a completed manuscript for the second book in the series, A Class Entwined, but it will need another draft based on the final edits in A Class Apart. After that, I’ll schedule it in with both my editor and cover designer. All things going according to plan, I hope to publish it in early 2019!

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Want to win an ebook copy of A Class Apart?  Leave a comment below, or visit Ashley O’Melia’s Facebook page and find the pinned post.  A random winner will be drawn on July 14th!

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Susie Murphy is an Irish historical fiction author.

In her working life, she has been a library cataloguer, a shop assistant, a market research interviewer, an office manager and a piano teacher, but all she has ever wanted is to add ‘author’ to that list.

She doesn’t drink tea or coffee (but swears she really is Irish).

She has lived for a substantial time in six different counties – she now resides in Kildare but she’s from Tipperary.

She can recite all the colours of Joseph’s amazing technicolour dreamcoat at top speed in one breath.

When she was young, Susie and her mammy won a sandcastle competition on a summer holiday in England – there were some pretty spectacular sand sculptures on display but the judges gave them the prize because they were the only ones who built an actual castle. Susie’s advice since then: always stick to the brief, people.

She wrote her first ‘novel’ when she was eleven. Entitled The Rabbits’ Journey, it was eleven pages long and an unashamed plagiarism of Watership Down.

You can find Susie on Facebook and Twitter.

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Release Event for The Wanderer’s Guide to Dragon Keeping

Hello everyone! I’m sure you know by now that The Wanderer’s Guide to Dragon Keeping, a book that’s been in the making for over 15 years, will be released on Amazon at the end of the month! I’m inviting you to come join my release event on Facebook.
What will you get out of it?

-You’ll be among the first to purchase this awesome book (which is enough in itself, right?)

-Purchasing The Wanderer’s Guide as soon as it comes out means you get it for the special release price.

-Joining this event automatically enters you in the upcoming giveaways! (FREE STUFF!)

Why am I having this event?

-What better way to get the word out there than having a party?  (Okay, there won’t be a disco ball or any spiked punch, but you can bring your own and come hang out with me anyway.)

-The more people that purchase this book within a short time frame the better its ranking will be on Amazon, which leads to more sales, which leads to me bringing you more delightful reads!

Thanks in advance for all of your support.  Feel free to share this event with your friends and invite them to join the party as well.

Every girl needs a dragon.

Every girl needs a dragon.

 

 

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A Special Reward for my Followers

I want to thank my wonderful fabulous followers with a very special present:  you are the very first to know about my new release at the end of August!  The Wanderer’s Guide to Dragon Keeping is set to come out August 31st.  I can’t tell you how excited I am about it…well, actually, I’ll be doing just that in an upcoming post, because this book really means a lot to me.

Here’s what you need to know with this exclusive insider information:

-Throughout August, I’ll have oodles of dragon and fantasy posts on my Facebook page, as well as a giveaway!

-Also on Facebook, I will have the ultimate pre-sale!  You can order AUTOGRAPHED paperback copies of The Wanderer’s Guide directly from the Product tab on my page, before they are available on Amazon!  (And because I love you, the autographs are free!)  Stay tuned for more details!

Coming up next:  cover reveal!

Old open book with magic light and falling stars on wooden table

Enjoy this post?  Be sure to check out more of my work on Amazon.

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