August 29, 2014

Now Available: FOR EVERLY by Raine Thomas #NewAdult #Romance

I’ve been counting down the hours, and now it’s finally here! Today celebrates the launch of my New Adult Contemporary Romance, For Everly. For those of you who may have missed my earlier posts about the writing of this book, you’ll know that I was quite opposed to the idea of writing this genre. The characters, Everly and Cole, wouldn’t leave me alone, though. Such is a writer’s life!

To celebrate the For Everly release, I’m working with a group of authors and bloggers as well as A Tale of Many Reviews on two different launch tours. Each tour has its own giveaway, too! Please enter my giveaway by using the Rafflecopter code below. AToMR has over 50 blogs participating in their part of the launch tour, so you’ll find plenty of chances to win around the blogosphere over the next two weeks!

Thank you so much to the following bloggers and authors for helping me celebrate the launch of For Everly. I hope you’ll take the time to drop by each of these blogs and comment. Oh…and don’t forget to enter for your chance to win a signed book, custom jewelry based on the book, and an Amazon gift card!

May 27

Amanda’s Book Adventures

Dream Reads

Indie Writer’s Review

Rachel in the OC

The Bibliophile’s Corner

 May 28

Bethany Lopez

Bump on a Blog

Kathleen Valentine’s Blog

 May 29

Proserpine Craving Books

A Diary of a Book Addict

 May 30

Indielicious

Allison Cosgrove

 May 31

Aria Glazki Writes

 June 1

Booklicker Reviews

Every Free Chance Reviews

 June 3

I Read Indie

Writing, Stuff and Nonsense

 June 4

The Book Hookup

My Book Muse

 June 5

Always YA at Heart

Author Malia Mallory

 June 6

Kate’s Tales of Books and Bands

Writing on the Sunny Side of the Street

 June 7

Step Into Fiction

Sarah’s Books and Life

 June 8

Erica Lucke Dean

Laura Howard

 June 9

Jess’s Book Blog

Sandwich Making Book Bitches

Book Boyfriend Reviews

 June 10

Author Delancey Stewart

My Pathway to Books

As most people know, we authors couldn’t do what we do without the support of others. I’m so grateful to the bloggers, authors, readers, and fans who have supported my writing over the past two years. It’s been a remarkable journey! If you’re curious about For Everly, here’s a little more to whet your whistle before you enter the giveaway:

Book Blurb

**Mature Content Warning** Recommended for ages 17+ due to language, sexual content, and mature subject matter

Determined to overcome a dark and tragic past, college student Everly Wallace is only months away from earning her degree in physical therapy. She’s consumed with school, caring for her ailing grandfather, and figuring out how to pay the next bill. The last thing she wants is a relationship, but it just might be the one thing she needs.

Major League pitcher Cole Parker hasn’t fought for anything in his life. He went from a privileged upbringing to a multimillion dollar All-Star career. But when his pitching shoulder starts to give him trouble at only twenty-four years old, he faces the possibility of his injury becoming public knowledge and costing him everything.

In a desperate bid to save his career, Cole decides to hire someone to treat his injury, someone who will keep things off the record and out of the media. He finds the perfect solution in Everly. As mysterious as she is beautiful, she provides an enticing distraction from his pain. Soon, physical therapy is the last thing on his mind.

When an act of betrayal brings the truths they both fear to light, Cole will have to fight for the first time in his life…not just for his career, but for Everly’s love.

Purchase For Everly now on Amazon!

Purchase For Everly now on Barnes and Noble!

Add For Everly to your To-Read list on Goodreads!

Enter the Giveaway!

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It’s ELDER’s Launch Day!

Today is Elder‘s official book birthday! *tosses confetti* *pops the champagne cork*

First and foremost, I’ll let you know that the book is now available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble and will soon be available at Kobo. To purchase Elder on Amazon, click here. To purchase it on Barnes & Noble, click here. I can’t wait to hear what you think once you’ve had a chance to read it!

It’s hard to believe that the second Estilorian trilogy is coming to an end. After six books and a short story, I’ve grown so attached to these characters and their world. I won’t say this is the absolute end for the Estilorian series, but I will be moving on to other projects in 2013. So this is a bittersweet moment for me, I must admit!

With this being such a momentous book release, it deserves much fanfare and attention. Although I couldn’t get a host of swoon-worthy male models to pose for an Estilorian-inspired pic we could all drool over, I do have some amazing prizes to give away at the end of the Elder launch tour. Be sure to enter (Rafflecopter form below). I’d love for one of my fans to win!

I’d like to take a moment to thank these truly awesome authors and bloggers for participating in the tour. Please drop by their blogs and help support the Estilorians–you might win the giveaway in the process!

December 27th

Dream Reads

Jess’s Book Blog

Sarah’s Books & Life Blog

The Bibliophile’s Corner

December 28th

Finding Bliss

Step Into Fiction

Support Indie Authors

TeamNerd Reviews

December 29th

A Diary of a Book Addict

Every Free Chance Book Reviews

I Read Indie Blog

December 30th

Reading Fiction for Life

Suzy Turner

December 31st

Kissed by Ink

The Book Hookup

January 1st

Bethany Lopez

I Heart YA Books

 January 2nd

Kate’s Tales of Books & Bands

Writing Stuff & Nonsense

January 3rd

Book Briefs

Leisure Reads

Like a Bump on a Blog

 January 4th

Ed and Em’s Reviews

Writing on the Sunny Side of the Street

 January 5th

Lover of Paranormal

Mr. Book Wonder

Nori’s Closet

January 6th

Artsy Musings of a Bibliophile

Indie Writers’ Review

Today also happens to be my nephew and godson, Nathan’s, birthday. Since Elder is dedicated to him, he helped me decide on the launch date. Let’s all toast him and Sarah Evans from Sarah’s Books and Life Blog, who happen to share the same birthday!

I’ll leave you with the Elder trailer, created by the extremely talented Matt Landis of Flatline Films, and the giveaway entry form, along with my most heartfelt thanks for all of the support you’ve shown the Estilorians since their initial release. I have the best fans in the world!!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

SHIFT Cover Reveal and Launch Date Announced!

One of the most fun parts about being an indie author is working on a book’s cover. Unlike traditionally published texts, indie books allow the author to either design the cover themselves or hire a cover designer and then approve the final product.

As for me, my book cover designs would look like they’d been drawn by a two-year-old, so I work with the brilliant Devan Edwards of Nimbi Design. I absolutely <3 her! If you missed Devan’s great tips about cover design, please see my post here. All I know is that a good cover designer can take a tiny seed of an idea and make it blossom. Devan has definitely done that for me.

Her latest creation is the cover for Shift (Firstborn Trilogy #2). The book will be launched on Friday, August 24th. I’d like to take a moment to thank the following folks for participating in today’s cover reveal:

Bethany Lopez

DreamReads

I Read Indie Book Blog

IndieWritersReview

Jess’s Book Blog

Lisa M. Wood

Magnet4Books

Sarah’s Books and Life

TeamNerd Reviews

The Bibliophile’s Corner

Writing on the Sunny Side of the Street

Zoe’s Corner

Go and follow all of them if you aren’t already! They’re all amazing writers and bloggers. I’ll also mention that the wonderful team at YA Bound is working with me on a blog tour for Shift‘s release. Some of these blogs will also feature the cover reveal today, and will be participating in the tour between 8/27 and 9/1.

http://bookmarksbookshelves.blogspot.co.uk/ ~ http://Hardcoverlife.blogspot.com ~ http://bound2astound.blogspot.com ~ http://everyfreechancebookreviews.blogspot.com/ ~ http://kissedbyink.com ~ http://thebookhookup.com ~ www.fiction-freak.blogspot.com ~ http://www.lettersinsideout.net ~ http://www.angelafristoe.blogspot.com ~ http://bibliophilesthoughtsonbooks.blogspot.com/ ~ http://iheartyabooks.blogspot.com/ ~ http://www.crossroadreviews.com ~ http://adreamwithindream.blogspot.com
~ http://bookbriefs.blogspot.com ~ www.booksbesidemybed.com ~ http://edandemreviews.blogspot.com/ ~ http://adiaryofabookaddict.blogspot.com/ ~ http://stepintofiction.blogspot.com ~ http://readwriteandreadsomemore.blogspot.co.uk/ ~ http://paigebradish1996.blogspot.com/ ~ http://www.leisurereads.com ~ http://noriscloset.blogspot.com/ ~ http://read-a-holicz.blogspot.com
~ http://www.readergirlsblog.com ~ http://jessysbookends.blogspot.com ~ http://www.bengalreads.com

And now for the big reveal! First, the teaser…then, the cover:

Shift (Firstborn Trilogy #2)

Having the ability to shapeshift, Sophia is familiar with change. But even she feels the rising tension in her homeland.

A shadowy male and deadly beast reside in their midst. The births of the newest Kynzesti loom. Hostile Mercesti continue to hunt for the Elder Scroll, and a traumatized female is too afraid to use her abilities to stop them.

Topping off Sophia’s stress is Quincy, the male she’s convinced can’t stand her. She rues the loss of their friendship, but can’t figure out how to move past it. She’ll soon learn, however, that mending that rift bears more significance than she ever imagined.

The search for the Elder Scroll takes on unexpected urgency, and Sophia finds herself in a race across the mainland. To stop the Mercesti led by Eirik, she and her companions must get past their differences and unite against them. If they don’t, Eirik will acquire the immense power he seeks, and two of the beings Sophia loves most will die.

Isn’t it gorgeous? Devan has truly outdone herself. Please stay tuned over the next few weeks for more teasers from both Shift and the last book in the Firstborn Trilogy, Elder.

For now, please tell me what you think about the cover!

Defying the Odds: One #Indie Author’s Perspective

Today I’d like to share with you the dedication from my upcoming book, Defy. For those of you who don’t know, Defy was a book that just about made me give up writing.  It seems silly to say that now, but there you have it.

I’ve never revised a book as much as I did this one, and I spend a lot of time editing my books. At one point, I chopped 20,000 words and rewrote them. Then I chopped and rewrote some more. It felt like every time I was “done,” yet another change had to be made. My husband eventually took pity on me and shipped me off to a local hotel for a long weekend just so I could sit in peace and revise.

And still, I wasn’t done.

But whenever my frustration took hold and I wanted to throw the proverbial pen across the room, I’d receive some kind of positive feedback…a great review of one of my books, an unbelievably appreciated shoutout by a fellow author to an interested literary agent, or (most especially) contact from a new fan. It was messages like the one saying, “Thank you so much for your hard work and talent, and for putting forth such an intelligent story and beautiful imagery!” that got me through the rough spots.

Someone I don’t even know thanked me for all of my pain and suffering? How could I not go on?

What I’ve also learned in the process of finishing Defy is that I’m not alone. Many authors feel this way at some point. I’m contacted periodically by writers who express frustration, depression, feelings of inferiority, and/or the sentiment that they don’t feel like continuing on with their writing. And the advice I give them is the same advice I followed: never, ever give up.

Before I share the Defy dedication, I’ll offer a few tips for writers that I’ve recently picked up in hopes they’ll help someone out there. If you missed my first post featuring tips for writers, you can check it out here. As for my latest tips:

1. Don’t give up. Okay, I just said that…but it can’t be said enough!

2. Socialize like you’ve never socialized before. On a surprising number of occasions, I’ve observed other writers saying things like, “Pinterest is just a passing fad,” “I’m not going to waste time beefing up my Facebook presence,” or “I don’t get Twitter, so I just use it occasionally.” Um…seriously? I won’t even touch the Facebook and Twitter comments because, quite frankly, if you don’t see the value in those hundreds of millions of followers by now, I probably won’t be able to reason with you.

But, people–have we learned nothing from the past? There was a time when Facebook and Twitter were thought to be “passing fads.” There’s a quote by Steve Jobs (you might’ve heard of him) that says, “People don’t know what they want until you show it to them.” Pinterest is the most visual site there is. On top of that, it can link to your Facebook and Twitter feeds. Get on there and start pinning your books, your blogs, pictures that resemble your characters, images that inspire your settings, amazing wardrobe photos, and anything else that you think might draw interested readers into your world. This is the hottest social media site out there right now. Don’t miss out because you think it has no bearing on the writing world!

And, yes…I’ve made book sales via Pinterest.

3. Support other writers. I believe in the power of karma. There has been some negativity in different segments of the writing community, and a lot of it stems from whether or not an author is traditionally published. In my mind, we should look beyond that. We should acknowledge that we’re all working exceedingly hard at our craft. We should support each other. We should read each other’s books, tweet about them, like them, pin them, blog about them and refer them to all of our friends and relatives. This is a hard enough industry to succeed in without having unnecessary obstacles caused by narrow viewpoints.

If you work hard on your writing, keep your mind open to creative ways to sell and market your books, and never stop developing your social media platform, you can defy the odds and have a successful writing career. Believe it.

And with that, I leave you with the dedication to Defy, which releases on April 30th. I hope you all enjoy Tate and Zachariah’s story as much as I enjoyed completing it!

This book is dedicated with sincerest gratitude to all indie authors and everyone who supports us.

It never ceases to amaze me what an inspiring and supportive community this is. Here’s to defying the odds, pursuing our dreams and reaching for the stars!

The Prophecy (An Estilorian Short Story)

The Prophecy, an Estilorian short story for young adults

When I started writing the Daughters of Saraqael trilogy, I had a clear-cut plan. I wanted to write three YA books following three sisters. The books had to be different from anything else available…not conforming to any particular paranormal or fantasy trends, but falling enough within the fantasy genre for readers to enjoy and connect with them.

And, of course, they would include romance and happy endings. (You know me by now, right?).

That was as far as my plans went at the time. Write the books, make sure they could each stand alone, then publish them. By the end of July of this year, those goals were achieved.

Since then, the response to the Daughters of Saraqael trilogy has been overwhelming. I’m both thrilled and deeply humbled when readers reach out to me via Twitter, Facebook or e-mail to tell me how much they enjoyed the books. And it was the resounding response to the first trilogy that cemented the idea of continuing the stories of the Estilorians.

By the time the first review came in for Becoming, I had begun the outline for book one of the upcoming Firstborn trilogy. I had so enjoyed writing about the Estilorians that I definitely wanted to continue the series. Once the positive reviews came in, I knew it was the right path to take.

Books take time to write, however. I was now not only working full-time as a wedding planner and trying to balance that with my family time, but I was promoting my books during every possible free moment. Writing the next trilogy would take some doing.

How would I keep my readers engaged?

It was my husband who suggested writing an Estilorian short story. In truth, I have no idea where the thought came from, as he hasn’t read a short story since it was required of him in high school. Nevertheless, it struck me as brilliant, and (more importantly) very doable.

So I got to work. Fortunately, I had the foresight to ask fans of the Estilorian novels what characters they liked and what story lines they would enjoy seeing expanded upon in future books. The most common response was that readers wanted to know the story of Saraqael and Kate, the couple who really started it all.

I couldn’t think of a better topic for a short story. Thus, as soon as I finished the first draft of book one of the Firstborn trilogy, I went to work on a short story that features part of the tale of Saraqael and Kate. Titled The Prophecy, the short story serves as a narrative bridge between the Daughters of Saraqael and Firstborn trilogies.

If you missed the teaser last week, please check it out! The Prophecy is now available for the Kindle at Amazon.com.

For more insights on The Prophecy, please visit these wonderful blogs featuring interviews about the short story launch: The Book Hookup and Sarah’s Books & Life Blog (which, ahem, also features a giveaway for a signed copy of Becoming!).

Thanks again to all of you for your support, and I hope you enjoy the first Estilorian short story!

Becoming (Daughters of Saraqael Trilogy Book One)

Becoming - Daughters of Saraqael Trilogy Book One- a young adult fantasy romance novel by Raine Thomas

The interest in my debut novel, Becoming, has completely blown me away. I feel I owe much of that to the amazing cover designed by Devan Edwards at Nimbi Design, who truly brought my written words to life. Any writer out there knows what an emotional moment it is to see that first finished cover.

Just…wow.

But that cover design has done more than simply make my world a whole lot brighter. It’s made my Facebook and Twitter friends deeply curious.

“Who’s that girl on the cover?” I’ve heard. “Why does she have those designs around her eyes?” another friend wanted to know. “What a compelling image! Makes me want to read the book,” many others have said.

These questions and comments tell me that Devan really knocked it out of the park. So, thank you, Devan, and thanks to everyone for your interest! Now, for the book description you’ve all been waiting for…I hope it does the cover justice!

 

Becoming
Daughters of Saraqael Trilogy Book One

 

Every three years, Amber Hopkins explodes. Okay, not a blown-to-smithereens explosion, but whatever it is always hurts like hell and leaves her life a shambles. She’s already worked her way through five foster placements, and she’s doing whatever she can to avoid getting blasted into a sixth.

As her eighteenth birthday approaches and she feels the strange and powerful energy building, disaster looms. When the inevitable explosion occurs, her life gets its biggest shakeup yet. She’ll not only learn how her fellow foster and best friend, Gabriel, really feels about her, but she’ll discover that she isn’t really without family.

To top it all off, she’ll finally find out why she’s having the power surges: she isn’t entirely human.

Amber must Become, transitioning to another plane of existence and risking the loss of the most important relationship she’s ever had. Her choice will impact the future of an entire race of beings, and will pit her against an enemy that will prey upon her doubt to try and take her very life.

Kind of makes the explosions now seem like a cakewalk.

Join the Daughters of Saraqael as they discover their other halves…their Estilorian halves. The journey begins with Becoming, now available via Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Smashwords, coming soon to all other digital platforms.

Central (Daughters of Saraqael Trilogy Book Two)

Central - Daughters of Saraqael Trilogy Book Two- a young adult fantasy romance novel by Raine Thomas

Writers and readers alike grow attached to characters in books. Rarely do I read the last word of a great story without feeling like I’m saying goodbye to a dear friend. Indeed, many FAQ’s on authors’ websites relate to favorite characters and when they might make another appearance.

So when I finished Becoming and started Central, I had a hard time shifting my focus from Amber. I had just finished a novel that accomplished all I had aspired to do. I was several chapters into Central when I realized that Amber appeared more often than Olivia.

Uh. Wait a minute here…

Though it was difficult, I scrapped those early efforts. Amber’s story had been written, I reminded myself. Now it was time for her middle sister to take the stage.

I’m so glad I made the revisions. Olivia’s tale took on a life of its own, morphing from a sweet, fun love story (with a fantastical edge, of course) to a tale with some darker undertones that bumped it into the page-turner I envisioned. What more could a reader want, right?

And now, for more of the exciting details about Olivia’s story:

 

Central
Daughters of Saraqael Trilogy Book Two

 

For avid student Olivia Murdoch, life on the Estilorian plane is filled with wondrous adventure. Every lesson about her new existence is both exciting and challenging. Along with her sisters, she embraces this non-human half of herself.

Helping with her lessons is her Gloresti, James. Teacher, scholar and distractingly attractive, James takes on his roles of Olivia’s guide and protector with equal dedication. As he learns the human emotions that Estilorians no longer experience, he starts to see Olivia as much more than just an assigned pairing.

The physically weakest of her sisters, Olivia trains hard to learn things that no typical human classroom can impart. When they travel to “Central,” the Estilorian base, she comes to understand why she must become strong enough to defend herself. She and her sisters are targets.

Not all Estilorians welcome them. In fact, more than one would see them dead.

Follow the Daughters of Saraqael as they learn more about life on the Estilorian plane…including the dangers it holds. The journey continues with Central, now available via Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Smashwords, coming soon to all other digital platforms.

Foretold (Daughters of Saraqael Trilogy Book Three)

Foretold Daughters of Saraqael Book Three a young adult fantasy romance novel by Raine Thomas

Any writer who says that all character types are easy to write is either remarkably gifted or sadly clueless. We all have our strengths. I think it’s only logical that the closer a character is to a writer’s true personality, the easier and more realistically the character develops.

Which brings me to Skye. She’s effervescent, charismatic, graceful, blissfully naïve and a social extrovert. In short, many things I most definitely am not.

Writing her story was, at turns, surprisingly freeing and rather painful. Hers is the book that brings her sisters’ stories to a head. The intense conflict that began in Becoming and heightened in Central culminates in Foretold, the last book of the trilogy.

No pressure though.

I learned a lot about myself in writing from Skye’s perspective, and I hope that you’ll enjoy her story as much as I enjoyed writing it. And here it is…the long-awaited description of Foretold:

 

Foretold
Daughters of Saraqael Trilogy Book Three

 

Centuries before she was born, Skye Tomaganuk was a subject of the most important prophecy in Estilorian history. As one of three half-human daughters born of the Corgloresti, Saraqael, she is part of the fulfillment of Knorbis’ Great Foretelling. What she doesn’t know is just what the Foretelling entails for her and her sisters.

As Skye and her sisters continue their training and visit each of the Estilorian class homelands, they soon learn how much impact their human emotions have on their father’s kind. Skye is particularly interested in the effect of emotions on her Gloresti, Caleb. Although she wants their relationship to progress beyond just that of protector and assignment, he proves particularly resistant to the idea.

She’ll soon have much more to worry about than a lack of romance, however. With the help of a traitor, Grolkinei infiltrates the Estilorian stronghold, imprisoning Skye’s mind and putting all Estilorians at risk. It leads them all toward the greatest battle of their kind, and puts Skye’s faith to the ultimate test.

Be there as the Daughters of Saraqael face off against Grolkinei and his Mercesti in an epic battle to preserve the future for all Estilorians. The journey concludes with Foretold, now available via Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Smashwords, coming soon to all other digital platforms.