Justice (Deck of Lies, #1)

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The Tower (Deck of Lies, #2)

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Death (Deck of Lies, #3)

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Judgment (Deck of Lies, #4)

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Hope's Rebellion

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Saturday, August 29, 2015

Death and the Deep: Official Trailer

It's not live to the general public, but it is available to you! Get a look at the official trailer for "Death and the Deep," Book 2 of the Saltwater Secrets Trilogy.

Get a free sample of the Death and Deep now, even before it's available in stores!

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Writing 101 Redux: Accept and Except

They sound the same, but they have totally different meanings. Do you know the right way to use accept and except? 

Read today's TBT Writing 101 tip to learn how to use accept and except the right way, and you won't mix them up again.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Writing 101: The Diagram of a Story

I still remember the day I saw this diagram put up on the blackboard in English class. This is the formula of writing a story….or so they say. Is this what the diagram of a story looks like to you -- and every author in the world?

The Sum of Its Parts

This diagram is actually known as Freytag's pyramid, and it represents the five parts (or acts) of a dramatic arc. You can find this pyramid in a lot of storytelling, from books to movies.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Writing 101: Funny Business

It's a widely-accepted truth that people like to laugh. Even sad stories -- especially sad stories -- need to give readers a chuckle now and them. If you aren't naturally a funny person, it's really hard to write funny. That's why some writers need to master certain tricks to do it. Once you do, the business of being funny isn't so hard after all.

Funny Characters

One of the simplest ways to add humor to a book is to do it through a funny character. Have someone in the book deliver your one-liners, and you can drop a little comedy into any part of the book that feels too serious and heavy. Being funny gets a little easier if you craft a character that’s around just to be a clown. Now, all you need to know how to do is write a clown.

Monday, August 24, 2015

What You Have in Common with Chaucer...and Mark Twain

I always wanted to be an author, growing up, so I always answered with that when people asked me. They would then invariably try to give me advice about how to do it. Write what you know, they would always say. That’s confusing advice. You can’t always know what it’s like to swim in the ocean or climb a tree, but you can still write about these things. But authors like Geoffrey Chaucer and Mark Twain understood the idiom, and they used it in their books. You probably have something in common with these two greats, too. 

It’s Not What You Know…

I found out that “write what you know” can apply to just about anything. You can write about going to the Grand Canyon after visiting it. You can write about shopping because you’ve done it. But many of the greatest authors used it to create their characters. Two of the greatest character-creators ever were Chaucer and Twain...and they did it by writing not what they knew, but who they knew.

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Death and Deep: Coming Soon!

Death and the Deep

coming in September!

I came back to the land because I thought it would be safe. I didn’t know the waves would keep calling me, even weeks after I decided to leave them for ever. 

That’s the problem with the ocean. The things we leave behind in the waves have a way of washing back up to the shore. Everything I left in the water is still out there…and I can hear it calling for me, no matter how hard I try to block the sound of the waves. 

There is death waiting for me in the deep. Even when I try my best to stay on the land, the ocean won’t stop trying to claim me as one of its own. I’m afraid that soon, it’s going to succeed.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Writing 101 Redux: There, Their, They're

Some writing lessons deserve to be repeated -- a lot. 

One set of words that cause many authors to struggle is there, their and they're. Learn the difference with today's Throwback Thursday Writing 101 tip, and don't get your words wrong anymore.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Writing 101: Skipping Time

One of the first books I ever loved follows the first-person perspective of a single character for about three years, and it’s so rich in detail that you live practically every day with the heroine. Except for that weird chapter that begins with a shocking sentence. In that sentence, the author skips ahead an entire year. Skipping time is an often-used fiction device, and it’s often jarring and upsetting. That’s probably because authors rarely do it really well.

Flashing Forward

In the book I’m making an example of, the narrator carefully details a year while living inside a very strange environment. The reader sees every detail, thought and spoken word unfold. I don’t think a single day is left out. Then all of a sudden, a year flies by. It’s just one sentence, and the first year took many chapters. No matter how you want to read it, that’s a jarring change of pace. It takes a few paragraphs to get back into the flow of things, after that. If your book is strong enough, you can always get over a rough spot.

...But why would you want to have a rough spot?