Almost 200 Followers – and a Lucent Sylph Award!

5star-shiny-hr Lucent Sylph!It is with the greatest pleasure that I get to announce…

This week, Lucent Sylph won a Readers’ Favorite Five Star medal!!  Such high praise from the group of editorial reviewers over at Readers’ Favorite!  The new Lucent Sylph covers will be going up soon with new medals on the front.  Woot woot!

To read Lucent Sylph for free, go here!

On top of that, this blog has almost hit 200 followers!  I’d like to give a gift to the 200th follower – an ebook copy of all of my books!  That’s a $16 value!  The entire RJ Conte collection!  Share this post with friends, and maybe some of them will win the whole shebang.

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I’d also like to announce that my new novella, a Christian romantic comedy about a quirky young woman and the guy she hits while driving drunk…

is in editing stages!!  Thanks to a coaching session with Janeen Ippolito, and thorough edits from Desiree Williams, I hope to have this story out to you in a few weeks!  SQUEAL.

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Winner of the Mad Libs Contest!

We have a winner of the Mad Libs contest! Thank you for sending in entries!
 
Judging had to pick Jenna Skye Aquino for her succinct, creative, and clever paragraph using all 5 crazy words:
 
“Steven was trying the new meatloaf recipe his girlfriend had found online. The last time she tried something new it was disastrous. He had never felt his stomach crinkle like that before nor did Advil alleviate the pain. Hopefully this time around the recipe won’t make his body bloat like a globe. He was a nincompoop for trying the recipe but he loved her, this he would do to support her.”
 
Congratulations, Jenna. You win a paperback copy of Heartsick!
 

Do You Like Mad Libs? Here’s a Game For You…

GIVEAWAY!!

 
Anyone ever get the feeling that Dr. Who episodes are created by the directors playing Mad Libs and then the writers just going with whatever comes up? 😛
 
While I’m waiting to get my voice and lungs back (had a rough bout of walking pneumonia) to continue my video series, I thought it might be fun to do an original sort of giveaway.
 
You guys are ALL writers, and you just don’t know it. 😉
 

I’m going to give you a series of 5 crazy words, and you need to write a 2-4 paragraph micro-story.

Results need to be in before November 1st! Winner will receive a paperback copy of my last novel published (and biggest novel!, Heartsick!
 
Send me your micro-stories over pm or email (dashwoodavenue@gmail.com)
 
Now HERE are your words:

meatloaf, crinkle, Advil, globe, and nincompoop!

All 5 words MUST be used.
 
May the best Mad Libbers win!! 😀
 
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30+10 – 1950s Lingo

There is a giveaway going on!  Check out my Facebook page to participate.  If you don’t have a Facebook account, you can leave a comment here to play.  🙂

#30and10 Day 10
I heavily researched the clothing, language, and hip words of 1950s South Carolina. At first I was worried the authenticity of it would turn away the kids it was written for, but then someone gave it to their grandmother, who was a teen in the 50s, and she wrote me back saying, “You got the speech down perfectly! it was all the words I said!”
Write your funniest “cool” word you used growing up in the comments below (or on Facebook) to win a paperback copy of Dashwood Avenue. 🙂 Giveaway ends midnight tomorrow night (12:00 AM July 4th)

To buy Dashwood Avenue for Kindle, or any of my other books, go here: http://www.amazon.com/RJ-Conte/e/B00MDY4T0S/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1

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Learn a New Martial Art with Bensin!

Hello to all!  (Read all the way to the bottom for a giveaway.  I entered!)

I have been making a ton of new author friends these days.  Networking has been a joy and a mind-broadening thing for me as I learn from “the greats” in both my publishing house, Cleanreads.com, and well as with other independently published “Indie” (self-published) authors.  Now that I am both traditionally published as well as have Indie books, I am considered “hybrid.”  Yeah, I’ve been learning all new lingo too.  😉

One of the amazing women I’ve met and befriended this year, is an American working at a Annie Douglass Limaschool in Taiwan, and has lived multiple places around the world.  She tirelessly promoted Lucent Sylph for me this past year, even inspiring some of her students to read the book!  Her name is Annie Douglass Lima. Doesn’t she just look cool?  🙂

She is a sweet, very polite woman (Haha, Annie! ;-)) who is gracious, well-spoken, and, of course, an excellent author.

Her first book, The Collar and the Cavvarach, re-imagines our modern world with slavery still in place.  It’s a fascinating and sobering look at what it would be like if we were enslaved in today’s society.  The main character, Bensin, is a martial arts expert (in the Annie-inspired fighting style called Cavvara shil.

The first book was sweet and like slice-of-a-different-kind-of-life that made me think of warm bread straight out of the oven (I always imagine books that I read and write as foods, usually desserts.  :-P)  Bensin’s Coach is a male ESFJ, as well, so that was a major plus for me!  The end gets especially exciting when Bensin is focused on freeing his little sister from a life of slavery, indentured to take care of a baby in a house that treats her with 12321454_10209189877929813_5691195618476333666_nneglect.  My youngest daughter cosplayed as Bensin’s sister Ellie for a contest this month.  😀  She wrote the sign, and really got into her role.  😀

The Collar and the Cavvarach was a great PG family-friendly book, for like ages 12+, and I enjoyed it a ton.

In the YA sequel, The Gladiator and the Guard, however, Annie takes the story and the stakes up a notch.  Because of an injustice, our poor Bensin is sentenced to be a gladiator.  I haven’t finished the book yet, because I have the immense pleasure of beta-reading for the author, and just going through the book and writing my thoughts to her as I go – like a conversation between friends (Squeal!  I’m so blessed!)  But I can tell you this book is a PG-13 with more intense action and excitement!  What I love most is seeing all of the characters grow.  Poor Ellie (now I picture my own daughter!), Coach and his Conscience (Yes, the Conscience is practically another character  😉 ), and Bensin go through temptations, attitudes, failures, and moral dilemmas.  I am dying to see what happens at the end!

If you like arena-game stories of survival and courage and character growth, please check out the entire Krillonian Chronicles series by Annie Douglass Lima!  

The Gladiator and the Guard

To whet your appetite, here’s an excerpt:

Ian was overseeing the glads in his ten while they sparred on Monday, and Bensin

had just successfully disarmed Fifty-Five, when they were interrupted.

“Riddior wants to see Fifty and Fifty-Eight,” a guard announced to Ian.

Their trainer nodded, apparently not surprised. “Go,” he told Bensin and Fifty.

Bensin started to unbuckle the shil he was wearing, but the guard stopped him

with a shake of the head. “You’ll need that. Bring the cavvarach too.”

They crossed the large room, skirting the other tens’ training zones. Bensin and

Fifty glanced over their shoulders every now and then to see where the guard wanted

them to go. Guards never led the way in the arena; they always made glads walk ahead.

They don’t trust us not to attack them from behind.

At the other end of the room, a group of about twenty glads had gathered in

front of the training manager. The tall Skeyvian was laughing and joking with them like

no one else in the arena ever did. Riddior was easy to get along with.

“So,” he said, when Bensin and Fifty had joined them. “You’re all here because

you’re the best of our best at cavvara shil, and you’re going to get to prove it to the world

next Sunday.”

Instantly, a knot formed in Bensin’s stomach. I’m not ready to fight again. Sure, he

had been taking some sort of herbal concoction every day — down from twice a day at

the beginning — that was supposed to hasten the healing process, and it did seem to be

working. True, when he had been summoned to the clinic last week, Doc had taken

another X-ray and announced that his rib was back to normal. It didn’t hurt anymore

when he stretched or breathed deeply. His concussion symptoms were long gone, his

nose was better, and the wound on his face only really hurt if he tried to smile too wide.

But he hadn’t found many things to smile about, so that wasn’t a problem.

Still, Bensin didn’t feel ready to pick up a cavvarach again and face possible death

and dismemberment out on the sand.

Annie Douglass Lima spent most of her childhood in Kenya and
later graduated from Biola University in Southern California. She and her
husband Floyd currently live in Taiwan, where she teaches fifth grade at
Morrison Academy. She has been writing poetry, short stories, and novels since
her childhood, and to date has published twelve books (two YA action and
adventure novels, four fantasies, a puppet script, and five anthologies of her
students’ poetry). Besides writing, her hobbies include reading (especially
fantasy and science fiction), scrapbooking, and international travel.

Connect with the Author Online:

Email: AnnieDouglassLima@gmail.com

The Solid Rock

This Thursday, I was asked to promote Heartsick at a release party for a fellow homeschooled author who writes clean romantic westerns: Faith Blum.  I’m so excited to join with her on this!  Please come to the party!  Click here.

The Facebook party is on March 31st from 2-4 Central time. You can join her the 3 other authors (including me!) here. There will be fun, games, giveaways, excerpts, and more. Some of the giveaways will stay open through Friday evening, April 1st. Fun fact: the other three authors are all homeschool moms.  😀

Today I have the privilege of sharing an excerpt of Faith’s upcoming release: The Solid Solid RockRock.  (And make sure you don’t miss the giveaway at the bottom!)

Blurb: A talented detective with a mission to find his kidnapped colleague finds himself working undercover with a heinous outlaw who has more plans than first meet the eye.

Excerpt:

Four days later, Joshua and Poseidon left the train to ride the rest of the way to Cheyenne. He took a deep breath and marveled at how different it was from Chicago. He could hardly believe his brother-in-law, Micah, had lived that city for so long. It was so hard to breathe.

He mounted his horse and started off in a gentle canter.

“Heavenly Father.” Joshua paused and sighed. “You know how heavy my heart is right now. Protect Mr. Harris and give Elizabeth peace. I can’t imagine what it’s like for either of them right now.

“You are awesome in power, unchangeable, immutable, always present, all-knowing, all-powerful, You are the only True God. Despite my heavy heart and how my mind is racing ahead of me to figure this mystery out, I can’t help but praise You.”

Poseidon snorted and Joshua patted him. “Sorry, Boy. I’m talking too much again, aren’t I? Now, where was I? Oh, yes, praising my Savior.”

Poseidon shook his head and fought the bit. “You wanna run?” Joshua laughed and looked around. There was nothing for miles, not even a hill. “All right, let’s go.”

He dug his heels into Poseidon’s sides as he urged the horse into a gallop. “Yeehaw!” Joshua yelled as he grabbed his hat before the wind stole it. He closed his eyes and relished the whip of the wind brushing his face and blowing through his almost too long hair.

The smile on his face couldn’t have been wiped off even if he had wanted it gone. The exhilaration and intense joy he felt was something that could only be found when galloping on a horse in the summer winds.

Joshua watched the flat farmland whiz past him, the only things marring the wheat and corn fields being the scarecrows sticking their ugly heads over the waving crops. Joshua laughed as Poseidon splashed through a stream, soaking them both.

“Thank you, Poseidon, I needed to be cooled down.”

Joshua slowed his horse down. “Nice run, Boy. I think we both needed that. I’m glad the trains didn’t connect so we could ride.”

He rode on a few more hours in silence, listening to nature, meditating on God’s Word and mulling verses around in his head, praising God, praying, and making his way one step at a time closer to Cheyenne.

Faith Blum Books

Faith is giving away a full set of paperback books! Fill out this form to earn entries to the giveaway. Each entry gives you one point, plus there are opportunities for bonus entries.

author-picture-2015-2016-cropped

Faith Blum started writing at an early age. She started even before she could read! She even thought she could write better than Dr. Seuss. Now that she’s grown up a little more, she knows she will probably never reach the success of Dr. Seuss, but that doesn’t stop her from trying.

 

When she isn’t writing, Faith enjoys doing many right-brained activities such as reading, crafting, writing, playing piano, and playing games with her family. One of her dreams is to visit Castle City, Montana someday to see the ghost town she chose for her characters to live in. She currently lives on a hobby farm with her family in Wisconsin.

 

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Faith-Blum/e/B00GSPBHW6

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HymnsoftheWest

Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/Faith_Blum

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/FaithBlumAuthor

Website: http://www.FaithBlum.com

Blog: http://www.FaithBlum.wordpress.com

 

 

 

 

 

Giving Away Free Copies of The Hotline Girl

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Tomorrow, Monday the 14th, I’m going to be on my publishing house’s page – Clean Reads – doing fun pictures and info about The Hotline Girl, as well as giving away a few copies of the book. Some of you will have seen my material from before, but I’d love for you to join us anyway, especially if you want to win a free copy of the new and improved novella! 🙂 You can check in during the day, or like the page and set it to notifications so you get notified of all of the posts I have. 🙂

Click herehttps://www.facebook.com/cleanreadspublishing/?fref=ts

 

Lucent Sylph Figurine WINNER!

Thank you, all of you, for playing!  You retweeted (a ton!), share on Facebook and Instagram, interviewed me, made me banners, left reviews, and were all round supportive.

In just a half of a week, I have “sold” 299 free copies of Lucent Sylph, and the numbers rise every hour!  I am so privileged to be able to share this story with you, and the encouragement is tremendous.  🙂

With 107 entries into the contest, it’s time to announce the winner of the glass Lucent Sylph figurine.  And she is, believe it or not, author Heidi L. Burke!

*clap clap*  Heidi “Hepburn” Burke, you have retweeted me every time I post in Clean Indie Reads – and I’m so grateful.  That earned you a couple entries into this contest, and the random.org generator fell on your name.  PM me with your address, and I’ll get your new little “pet” friend to you.  😉

Lucent Sylph is still available for free!  Enjoy!  😀

IT’S HERE! – A Day Early!

Thank you for your prayers!  Amazon came through, and Lucent Sylph is up – a day early – for FREE!

The long-awaited short story is here, peeps!  Go grab it!  And remember, tell me when you share the link, so I can give you more entries into the figurine contest.  😀

Praise the Lord!  Best way to wake up – to see that Amazon had listened.  🙂  ENJOY!

2D - Copyhttp://www.amazon.com/Lucent-Sylph-Short-RJ-Conte-ebook/dp/B012LWE1AY/ref=la_B00MDY4T0S_1_5?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1437973033&sr=1-5

Lucas Thissel has something he fears: an alien species of palm-sized glass fairies called Lucent Sylphs. They came through a portal from a metaphysical dimension, and they indenture themselves as slaves to human beings. Too much neglect or unkindness, and they will cloud over and disintegrate. Too much love and their hearts are overcome and burst.

And one has attached herself to him.