- Apart from having some of the most controversial reviews I’ve ever received, Ever Bound has been one of my funnest releases. I loved sharing the origins if the curse, giving insight to some of Grace’s twisted background, and hopefully generating some more sympathy for Cole and Allie, who have to fight a curse through a century to be together.
- I touched on a lot of upsetting subjects Cole and Allie had to overcome to make it to present day in a very short book. I would have loved to give the 1879 era a full-length novel so that the events wouldn’t have seemed so rushed, but the novella Ever Bound was originally Cole’s journal written in entry form. Every entry was brash, rushed, upsetting to Cole and would also be for a reader. I am so very proud of this work. It gave insight to who Cole was before centuries of suffering overcame him and whittled him down to the tortured soul he’d become in Ever After (Cursed 1).
- This brings me to the overcoming joy I feel in announcing next month’s release of Ever Tempted Book 2 of the Cursed Series. This book picks up where Ever After left off. Allie waits for Cole to come home, and when he does, he’s changed and his love comes with a terrible price…
My life has been full lately, so the WordPress release for the actual release of Ever Bound Book 1.5 of my Cursed Series had to be put on a delay. I take care of two ailing parents, four children, teens I rescue, animals I rescue (c-sectioned a recently deceased cat and saved her babies–a story for another post), and work two jobs. So, needless to say, I’m a bit busy.
Ever Bound was originally a journal from Cole Kinsley’s p.o.v. that I never planned to publish, until my children read it and begged me to submit it for publication. They felt the world would love to learn in-depth details as to why my hero and heroine in Ever After had such a deadly struggle to survive. Not just in life, but in love.
So, I submitted it.
Kensington had tight deadlines, so I’ve been so overwhelmed with edits and reviews that I barely had time to breathe. The house was in shambles, my cars needed and still need a good wash, and my parents beg me to spend more time with them than just a quick stop-in to cook and clean then run. I’ve hired a cook/nanny/personal assistant who just happened to be a marketing genius. I really lucked up. Who gets all that in one person?
She is a blessing from above.
We’ve recently begun new strides to get the book in front of more faces, but it’s a feat in itself when the world of ebooks are so overran with a variety of different choices in publishing.
I’ve become a hybrid author, utilizing my publishing company and working on the side to release as many novels as possible. I hope all my hard work comes to fruition at some point. My real dream is to have my novels adapted to the big screen, but isn’t that all of us?
Enough catching up. It’s time to introduce Ever Bound:
A love as doomed as it is destined…
1879, Tennessee. A farmhand on the vast Rollins estate, handsome young Colby Kinsley makes the mistake of his life when he becomes briefly entangled with conniving Grace Rollins, the plantation owner’s beautiful but unstable daughter. Yet matters become even more complicated when he finds himself falling truly in love with Grace’s clever younger sister, Annabeth…
Intent on escaping her darkly troubled father and her melancholy home, Annabeth is also determined to avoid Colby. Yet she is still drawn to his quick wit and many talents. And when he performs an act of astounding courage, she can no longer deny her true feelings for him…just as her sister cannot hide her jealous rage. Grace will do anything to destroy the blossoming romance—even invoke dark, powerful supernatural forces. And as her dangerous machinations begin, the passions of all three are set on a tragic course—with a conclusion that will echo across lifetimes…
I hope you enjoy this dark, twisted novel as much as I enjoyed writing it. And not to be confused, you must read Ever After to understand the terrible events that unfold in Ever Bound. Allie and Cole’s fight to be together didn’t start in the here and now. They have been fighting a malicious spirit for over a century just to spend one lifetime of happiness together. To find their happily Ever After.
For years, Allie Knowles wondered why she dreamed of a guy with no face. In the dreams, he had the perfect masculine build but where expressions should have matched his low, sensual voice, his face was always a blur. This nameless, faceless guy would do nothing short of kill for her. Her affections were just as strong, but the bond made no sense. He didn’t exist. Or did he?
I can relate to Allie on so many levels. For years, I’ve written, rewritten, reworked scenes, killed off characters, renamed characters and through it all, it was so hard to imagine what Cole looked like. How did his hair look when it fell into his eyes? Did his eyes crinkle when he smiled or was their smoldering gaze so intoxicating that one wouldn’t notice the crinkles? I knew his eyes were green and haunted with years of loneliness. Chestnut streaks born from working in the sun highlighted his milk chocolate brown hair. He was strong but not muscled up like massive body builders. Veins didn’t bulge down his arms, but they were quite capable of putting a hurting on anyone or anything that threatened Allie.
But how would all those qualities come together for a reader?
Allie was revealed on the cover of Ever After which was just as striking beautiful as I’d always pictured her to be.
Today, I present you with Cole on the cover of Ever Tempted.
There are many things you could write about, but one thing I’ve learned is that there are areas in which I am not good at writing. I like to write about what I know and what would be fairly easy to research. Not to say that I recommend taking the easy road out, but when you write about what you know and have to do minor research, you take less chance of writing something an expert will pick through and find flaws. And there are experts everywhere.
When I take on writing a novel, I try to keep within my comfort zones, most times. Sometimes I venture out, but I make sure I research a few different accredited sites so that I don’t sound like a moron. Science fiction is where one could easily take a nose dive.
Modern technology advances like light speed, so make sure the site you research when taking on this genre of writing is up-to-date. If it was published in 1997, then, for the most part, the information you’ll find there is obsolete.
Historical romance has been the most interesting and easy to research that I’ve found yet. There are so many articles that will tell you what one would find in a barn, or inside a house, or outhouse that you can easily find what you need and base a really neat story around it.
I once read a romance novel set inside the Biltmore House in Asheville, NC, Maid to Match by Deanne Gist. Deeanne Gist’s knowledge of the house was such that I thought she either had lived there for years or had to have visited the Biltmore at least 30 times. Her execution and description was flawless. I read the book in a day and never felt so close to a character as I did her heroine. This was the result of awesome researching.
So if you decide to write outside of your knowledge base, be sure you’ve done the homework. There’s nothing like a poorly-researched novel to make a reader put the book down and never touch it again.
As my family and I sit around the dinner table with a myriad of different electronics impatiently awaitng our download of Ever After (Cursed Series) http://www.amazon.com/After-Cursed-Odessa-Gillespie-Black-ebook/dp/B00QP3CZUO/ref=sr_1_fkmr0_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1427223322&sr=8-1-fkmr0&keywords=Beautiful+Soul+Odessa+Gillespie+Black, the previous year comes to mind. This has been a rewarding road.
When #KensingtonBooks sent me the contract, I cried.
When I saw all the work involved, I almost cried. 🙂 But I knew it would be the means to an amazing end. Or beginning.
And it has.
When Cora Graphics Cover Art released the cover, I couldn’t believe my eyes. It was as if Cora had crawled in my head and tapped into the very soul of the novel. It was the most amazing thing I’d ever seen.
When the editing rounds started, I was a little overwhelmed, but one of Lyrical’s best freelance editors Penny-Jo Barber-Schwartz baby-stepped me through the process. We ended up with a professional grade novel.
I was suddenly so glad I hadn’t tried to self-publish it. I could have never done a better job than Kensington Books, Lyrical Press and Cora Graphics. It’s the best decision I’ve ever made.
It’s been awhile since I’ve updated everyone, but I’ve been busy editing and writing new books. I’ll make myself less of a stranger now that I have more time. Since we’ve last talked I have some exciting news. Ever After (Cursed Series Book One) will release September 1, 2015.
After working with the cover designers for a week, they finally revealed one of the most beautiful covers I could have ever hoped for. The picture depicts so much of the novel, I wondered if the designer at Cora Graphics hadn’t gotten in my head and picked my brain. The colors are gorgeous. So eye-catching. The backdrop of the house behind the girl is exactly as I depicted it in the novel. I could go on and on about how great it is, but I’ll let you see. I’m tickled pink.
My daughter often jokes and says, “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, Mama. Don’t get mad, get pumped.” But I remember to days back in 2004 and I wonder how we made it through. To date, you all don’t know much about me. That’s my fault. I haven’t shared.
In 2004, my husband became ill and eventually went into a coma. The doctors told us many people hold the misconception that we can come to them and they can “fix it.” That wasn’t true for my husband. No one knew how he’d gotten ill or what to do to “fix him.” That puts a wife in a very helpless situation.
In July of 2004, Brant went into the hospital with respiratory symptoms that acted much like the flu. He was put on life support and within ten days came home. He had lost around 30 pounds and this made him look even more sickly. Christmas of that same year rolled around and our family was devastated. My boss thought I was off eating bon bons and watching soap operas while my whole family became ill. The children went through 3 bottles of cough meds a day and diarrhea and throwing up were an every hour occurrence. I got fired the day after Brant was released from his job. Within months, Brant was sick again.
Brant entered into Cleveland Regional Hospital in Shelby, NC with an illness with no known etiology (which means the doctors were literally baffled). Within days he had decreased kidney function, swelling of the liver and his vitals signs were all over the place. The coma came next. No kidney function, no liver function, pancreatitis, congestive heart failure and basically a whole system shut down, while the kids and I suffered less severe, but similar illnesses.
The doctor had me bring in samples of the wall of my house. They found no types of mold that matched the thin orange rods they’d never seen before in his lungs. IT was a type of mold that had mutated from two separate types and he would probably be in the history books before it was all over, the doctors told me.
So we lost everything we owned because the doctor said we needed to leave the house behind and all our belongings with it.
I lived at the hospital on the concrete floor in the waiting area beside my husband’s ICU room waiting for the final moment, for the doctors had told us to make final preparations. He had less than a 1% chance to live.
One morning about a months in, I woke to a phone call from a woman who told me God had kept her up all night praying for a blonde haired man, a brown haired woman (his wife) and their four children. She said she went to pick up her diabetic meds at a local pharmacy, heard the pharm. tech. talking about her son in a coma and she stepped forward. She got our number and called me to tell me what God had told her to tell me.
I asked, “What did he say?”
“That your husband will get up out of that hospital bed and walk out of that hospital a healed man.”
“Wait. Who are you and who are you with?” I asked used to weird scams in this day and age.
“I’m with Jesus and that’s all you need to know for right now.”
“Well, his next visitation is in ten minutes and I have to go.”
“Please take my number. He told me I have to find you a home, refurnish your house, buy new clothes for your whole family and take care of Christmas this next year, so we still have some talking to do.”
I took her number, sure she was a looney person and went in to see my husband where I found CHAOS!
I walked up behind the doctor and asked him what was wrong.
“Actually, nothing. We’re pulling him off the ventilator, his kidney function is back and all his labs are back to normal. I don’t know what happened.”
“I do,” I answered in tears.
I’d just witnessed a Lazarus. The only thing really living anymore had been the machines and Jesus had brought Brant back to life.