Saturday, December 13, 2014

Cover Reveal

Good news! I think I finally have the cover down for A Little Magick, the upcoming children's fantasy which is also the sequel to Magick & Moonlight. I am excited about the Magick Series! Here is the cover:



Here is the first book, Magick & Moonlight, which is available now on Solstice Publishing and Amazon:

http://bookgoodies.com/a/B00IRKN5P2


And, lest ye mourn the fact that there isn't another romance in the series, don't fret. Magick Sunrise is a romantic fantasy work in progress that I have planned for the third book. Here are my muses for that one:

 
It's all very exciting, isn't it? Here is a little teaser from A Little Magick to whet your appetite:

_____




Soon, her eyes began to get heavy and then she felt like she was floating.  Her eyelashes lifted and she groaned to see that Uncle Adam had picked her up and was carrying her.  “I’m sorry.  We can finish the show now.”
            “It’s all right.  You’re too tired.  We can watch it another night.”
            “But, I don’t want to.  I swear I can stay awake.”  Her lids began to drift closed once more, however.
            “Hmm…why don’t you go to sleep now, Rosie?  All of this will still be here tomorrow.”
            Uncle Adam’s low voice had the strangest effect on her.  Soon she felt the cool sheets of her bed beneath her and when the covers were drawn over her body, she thought this was what a cloud must feel like.
            She drifted off, dreaming that she was a rocket, shooting straight through the stars and the wind blew through her hair, lifting it.
            Sometime later, Rosanna came awake once more.  The room was pitch black, but she was not afraid of it.  She had never been afraid of darkness.  She tossed, trying to find a comfortable spot, hoping she would just go back to sleep, but she couldn’t. 
            Rosie turned onto her back and looked up at the ceiling.  As her eyes adjusted, she couldn’t detect much other than the shape of it. She wanted to open the window so she could breathe in the night air, one of her favorite pastimes.  But, she didn’t know how hard it would be to open. She thought of the crisp air she enjoyed when her family went camping, how they would all roast marshmallows over the fire and tell scary stories.  Before they retreated into their tent as a family, Mama and Daddy would drag her across their laps and ask her what shapes she could see.  She thought of the array of stars blessing the night sky, high above the treetops.  It was a nice memory.


            She noticed vaguely that a light had come on, a soft one like the nightlight Mama and Daddy had in her room even though she told them she wasn’t scared.  Then suddenly, she realized it wasn’t a light causing her to see.
She looked down at her hands and they glowed a bright blue.  “Something is wrong,” she whispered.  Her breath caught in her throat and she scrambled out of bed.  When she landed on her feet, her blue pajamas were glowing too.  She looked down at her chest and realized it was in her skin.  She opened her mouth and screamed.  Then she saw that the dark room was covered in a multitude of stars like the night sky at home or like Uncle Adam’s theater.  It was beautiful, but strange.  Why was this happening?  Was this the magick Mama did?  Could she do it too?
            The glow was still under her skin though, and it frightened her.  Her breaths became labored. 
            “Rosie!”
            “Uncle Adam!” she cried as the door flew open and she saw him bare-chested and in a pair of dark pajama pants.
            “Are you okay?” he asked, then stopped short when he looked around. “What the…”  His mouth dropped open when he saw the stars dotting the room.
            “It’s in my skin!” she cried.
            His gaze swung back to her and his eyes widened when he took her in.  He wrapped her in his arms.  “Okay…ah, okay.  We’ll figure this out.”

_____

I have a couple more beta reads and then A Little Magick should be available to the public. Yay! :) 

Monday, December 8, 2014

Advanced reviews for SECOND NATURE!

My new paranormal romance/urban fantasy book, Second Nature, just came out!  I am so excited about book one of the Blood at First Sight Series, and I am anxious for you all to see it! 

http://bookgoodies.com/a/B00Q7FWIWA

In that vein, I just wanted to drop by and mention that two early reviews posted on December 2nd on Goodreads. Here they are:

3678510
's review
Dec 02, 14

Read on December 01, 2014

Second Nature
Marie Lavender
 
What did I like? It’s been a long time since I have a read a book that hit me like this one did. I have always liked paranormal books and if they included a romance so much the better. This book has that and more! I started this book and could not put it down, the story started and from page one took hold of me and wrapped me up. The action and emotions were flying off the pages with the author's signature writing of vivid descriptions and details that will start that mental video in your head. I loved the reaction between Desiree and Alec with the connection being so tantalizing that you could not help but be involved. I could feel the how the tension was building and you could just see how their lives were changing and knew that nothing would ever be the same. I was so involved that I cried and cried from the love that was pouring off the pages. There was nothing about this story that I disliked, I loved it from page one to the very end.

What will you like? I have read other books by this author so I knew that I would fall in love with the story but if you have not read any of her work before be prepared for a well-developed story line that shows the work and effort that she puts in her writing. She has a remarkable way of describing the places and characters that pull you into the story from the beginning. You don’t have to read half the book to figure out that you’re going to like it, it starts from page one on! Her characters are always remarkable and loveable with details that leave no doubt that you either love them or hate them. I really like that when I read! When you finish the book you will be craving for the next book to be released soon. I would recommend all the books that Ms Lavender has written, the ones that I have read have all been great. Class writing and a five star story, don’t miss it! 

------
28595923
's review
Dec 02, 14

Read in October, 2014

I was lucky enough to receive an ARC of “Second Nature” by Marie Lavender. Having enjoyed her novel “Magick & Moonlight” a lot, and being a huge fan of vampires, I dove in eagerly – and I loved the book!

It was great to see things through both protagonists’ eyes and really understand what motivates them and what characterizes them. The heroine and the hero were both very well fleshed out, acted credibly and had me hooked from the start. I loved it that the author didn’t just make Desiree a weakling who blindly falls for an oh so drool-worthy vampire, but that she gave her strength, will power, an intriguing family background and life – and a little something I don’t want to mention for fear of spoilers. I also found it awesome that Alec was a troubled soul hiding behind all that brain and brawn and vampire appeal. The two of them made a perfect match, and I was rooting for their happy end throughout the book. Their names are perfect, by the way.

The plot was tight, keeping me on edge with all the action, emotions and steamy scenes. As happens with good books, I wanted to know the end of the story, but at the same time didn’t want it to be over.

If you enjoy vampire fiction that is on the one hand typical for the genre but on the other hand bears the author’s smooth style and flowing language, then you’ll enjoy “Second Nature” as much as I did.
 
---
 
Here is the book trailer for your viewing pleasure:
 
 

Friday, December 5, 2014

Two great reviews!

I love getting those Authorgraph emails that inform me of new reviews! Case in point, I found the email today and had to check out these awesome five star reviews, one for Magick & Moonlight and one for Upon Your Honor.  Thank you, Romance Gal! What a treat to find. You can see the reviews below:


5.0 out of 5 stars Went straight to my heart!, December 2, 2014
By 
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Magick & Moonlight (Kindle Edition)
Okay, I admit I'm a big fan of Marie Lavender's romances. Her novella, Magick & Moonlight, proved no exception: It went straight to my heart! That said, I couldn't help wishing that the story were longer. I wanted to explore the hero and heroine in more detail. Ethan is a complex individual with an open mind; a wounded spirit who needs time to heal. Jessie is just coming into her own as a practicing Wiccan. She's sweet, shy, and a bit unsure of herself. Marie combined all the right ingredients to tell an enjoyable story about learning to trust and finding true love. This is a good one to cuddle up with for an hour or two.
 
http://bookgoodies.com/a/B00IRKN5P2
 

5.0 out of 5 stars A shipboard romance with lots of adventure..., December 2, 2014
By 
This review is from: Upon Your Honor (Kindle Edition)
Having read Upon Your Return, I couldn't wait to read the sequel...and lucky for me, I didn't have to! The author gifted me the book in exchange for an honest review. Well, I enjoyed Upon Your Honor every bit as much as the first novel in the series. Grant and Fara Hill's son, Gabriel, has grown into a handsome, decent young man--not unlike his charming father. It was fun to reconnect with the "mature Grant" and to travel the seas with Gabriel and Chloe, the hero and heroine in this story. If you're looking for a shipboard romance with lots of adventure, you'll fall in love with Upon Your Honor!
 
http://smarturl.it/uponyourhonor
 
 

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Awesome new book review for Upon Your Honor!

I just found this 5 star review for Upon Your Honor on Goodreads! Yay!

http://smarturl.it/uponyourhonor


3927336
's review
Dec 02, 14


Upon Your Honor is a book I bought, read, and think is an outstanding story with a great author. I was impressed and happy to know that this author had more books to buy and read. Marie keeps her reader entertained and feeling all the characters actions. She has a way with allowing the reader to visualize exactly what the character looks like and feels.
Great job Marie.

Pattimari Sheets Cacciolfi, Therapist, Author, and VP of PnPAuthors

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Interview on BooksOnline Directory!

Recently, I had an interview post on BooksOnline Directory. This is an awesome site where authors can feature their books for readers, and they recently started offering interviews. Here is the link to the Q&A, but I will go ahead and put the full interview below for you as well.

Tell us a little about yourself and your background? - See more at: http://booksonline.directory/interviewfulldetails.php?ID=22#sthash.JAOc1GA8.dpuf

Hi Marie Lavender, thank you for agreeing to this interview.
Booksonline : Tell us a little about yourself and your background?
Marie Lavender : I am a romance author of 19 books. I am from the Midwest, and I live with my family and three cats. I have always wanted to write for a living.
Booksonline : What are your ambitions for your writing career?
Marie Lavender : I just hope to publish more books and maybe get my books in bookstores in the future.
Booksonline : When did you decide to become a writer?
Marie Lavender : At age 9.
Booksonline : Why do you write?
Marie Lavender : I write because I cannot imagine doing anything else for the rest of my life. I feel the most unbelievable sense of freedom when I'm writing a scene, when I am immersed in the story.
Booksonline : What made you decide to sit down and actually start something?
Marie Lavender : It just seemed to naturally occur. I had tons of stories in my had as a child, and it just made sense to start writing them all down.
Booksonline : Where do your ideas come from?
Marie Lavender : At times, they seem to virtually come out of nowhere. At other times, I am inspired by something I read or saw when I was out. I am an observer so that can really feed into my work.
Booksonline : What is the hardest thing about writing?
Marie Lavender : There are a lot of steps to writing. First, you write everything you can. Then, you have go back and look at it objectively to see how it can be improved, how you can delve further into the character or better show the scene. It can also be somewhat challenging to find the correct information when doing research. Editing can be a real chore. The hardest thing for me was realizing that writing was nothing compared to the rest. Writing isn't exactly easy, but it is usually the fun part. Editing, publishing and marketing are a lot harder.
Booksonline : What is the easiest thing about writing?
Marie Lavender : I think the best thing, the easiest thing, is when the ideas are really flowing, when the scene is coming out smoothly that you sit back in amazement when it's on the page.
Booksonline : If this book is part of a series, tell us a little about it?
Marie Lavender : My latest book is called Upon your Honor, and it is part of the Heiresses in Love Series. The book is a Victorian romance with quite a bit of suspense. It is about a young woman, Chloe, who stows away on a clipper ship to escape the nightmare at home. She believes she will be safe, but that is really far from the truth.
Booksonline : What are your thoughts on writing a book series?
Marie Lavender : I think sometimes it is necessary. A writer can be surprised when characters pop up, wanting their stories to be told. Sometimes they are connected to previous works, sometimes they aren't. I think most readers like reading a series; I know I do. The trouble is deciding when it has to end. I see some serial novels spanning between eight to fifteen books, and to me, though the books are good, it can seem a bit overwhelming as a whole. Personally, I like the idea of a trilogy (I read a lot of Nora Roberts and she does it all of the time). A trilogy isn't too short, but isn't too long. Of course, if it goes over that, about four to six books, that isn't bad either. It is a manageable number for both the author and reader. I am currently writing the last book of the Heiresses in Love trilogy, and there is a lot going on, not only about the two main characters, but also we get to take a look at some of the previous characters. I am determined to wrap everything up in this book. Not only do I not want to separate the individual stories out into other books, the theme of the book really works with what is going on for everyone. So, I think a trilogy is just perfect in this case. I am also working on the Blood at First Sight trilogy, a paranormal romance/urban fantasy/futuristic/dystopian series. The first book, Second Nature, is releasing very soon.
Booksonline : What is your favourite positive saying?
Marie Lavender : This one isn't specifically related to writing, but romance since I love romance (and that's what I write). Here it is: “A true man does not need to romance a different girl every night, a true man romances the same girl for the rest of her life.” -Ana Alas
Booksonline : Where can you see yourself in 5 years’ time?
Marie Lavender : I see myself married with maybe a kid, and, of course, I'd like to be well into the Witches of Moonhaven Series, a future series of six books that I have planned.
Booksonline : What advice would you give to your younger self?
Marie Lavender : Be patient. Everything happens when it's supposed to. Also, enjoy the journey!
- See more at: http://booksonline.directory/interviewfulldetails.php?ID=22#sthash.JAOc1GA8.dpuf
Hi Marie Lavender, thank you for agreeing to this interview.
Booksonline : Tell us a little about yourself and your background?
Marie Lavender : I am a romance author of 19 books. I am from the Midwest, and I live with my family and three cats. I have always wanted to write for a living.
Booksonline : What are your ambitions for your writing career?
Marie Lavender : I just hope to publish more books and maybe get my books in bookstores in the future.
Booksonline : When did you decide to become a writer?
Marie Lavender : At age 9.
Booksonline : Why do you write?
Marie Lavender : I write because I cannot imagine doing anything else for the rest of my life. I feel the most unbelievable sense of freedom when I'm writing a scene, when I am immersed in the story.
Booksonline : What made you decide to sit down and actually start something?
Marie Lavender : It just seemed to naturally occur. I had tons of stories in my had as a child, and it just made sense to start writing them all down.
Booksonline : Where do your ideas come from?
Marie Lavender : At times, they seem to virtually come out of nowhere. At other times, I am inspired by something I read or saw when I was out. I am an observer so that can really feed into my work.
Booksonline : What is the hardest thing about writing?
Marie Lavender : There are a lot of steps to writing. First, you write everything you can. Then, you have go back and look at it objectively to see how it can be improved, how you can delve further into the character or better show the scene. It can also be somewhat challenging to find the correct information when doing research. Editing can be a real chore. The hardest thing for me was realizing that writing was nothing compared to the rest. Writing isn't exactly easy, but it is usually the fun part. Editing, publishing and marketing are a lot harder.
Booksonline : What is the easiest thing about writing?
Marie Lavender : I think the best thing, the easiest thing, is when the ideas are really flowing, when the scene is coming out smoothly that you sit back in amazement when it's on the page.
Booksonline : If this book is part of a series, tell us a little about it?
Marie Lavender : My latest book is called Upon your Honor, and it is part of the Heiresses in Love Series. The book is a Victorian romance with quite a bit of suspense. It is about a young woman, Chloe, who stows away on a clipper ship to escape the nightmare at home. She believes she will be safe, but that is really far from the truth.
Booksonline : What are your thoughts on writing a book series?
Marie Lavender : I think sometimes it is necessary. A writer can be surprised when characters pop up, wanting their stories to be told. Sometimes they are connected to previous works, sometimes they aren't. I think most readers like reading a series; I know I do. The trouble is deciding when it has to end. I see some serial novels spanning between eight to fifteen books, and to me, though the books are good, it can seem a bit overwhelming as a whole. Personally, I like the idea of a trilogy (I read a lot of Nora Roberts and she does it all of the time). A trilogy isn't too short, but isn't too long. Of course, if it goes over that, about four to six books, that isn't bad either. It is a manageable number for both the author and reader. I am currently writing the last book of the Heiresses in Love trilogy, and there is a lot going on, not only about the two main characters, but also we get to take a look at some of the previous characters. I am determined to wrap everything up in this book. Not only do I not want to separate the individual stories out into other books, the theme of the book really works with what is going on for everyone. So, I think a trilogy is just perfect in this case. I am also working on the Blood at First Sight trilogy, a paranormal romance/urban fantasy/futuristic/dystopian series. The first book, Second Nature, is releasing very soon.
Booksonline : What is your favourite positive saying?
Marie Lavender : This one isn't specifically related to writing, but romance since I love romance (and that's what I write). Here it is: “A true man does not need to romance a different girl every night, a true man romances the same girl for the rest of her life.” -Ana Alas
Booksonline : Where can you see yourself in 5 years’ time?
Marie Lavender : I see myself married with maybe a kid, and, of course, I'd like to be well into the Witches of Moonhaven Series, a future series of six books that I have planned.
Booksonline : What advice would you give to your younger self?
Marie Lavender : Be patient. Everything happens when it's supposed to. Also, enjoy the journey!
- See more at: http://booksonline.directory/interviewfulldetails.php?ID=22#sthash.JAOc1GA8.dpuf
Marie Lavender,

Friday, November 14, 2014

Writing and Motivation: An Author’s Blog Tour



It’s National Novel Writing Month and even though I am not officially trying to write a novel in one month, my readers know I am always working on something, even multiple projects at the same time (as evidenced from the ‘Projects and Writing’ section of my website).  In celebration of NaNoWriMo, Webucator is asking authors to answer a few questions about their writing careers. 

http://d1lj9l30x2igqs.cloudfront.net/nano-2013/files/2013/09/Shield-Nano-Side-Blue-Brown-RGB-HiRes.png

Here are my responses:

What were your goals when you started writing? 

That one’s easy!  When I was a child, I knew I wanted to be an author/writer/novelist (I used the terms interchangeably).  My main goal was to see my name in print on a book, and preferably in a bookstore.  Of course, I did achieve that, though times have changed and now ebooks are a thing.  It really wasn’t about fame at all.  My goal was to make a difference through my writing, and I hope I have done that. 

What are your goals now?

My goals can range from finishing a certain book or series to finding the time to write.  A more complicated goal of mine is to help people; I hope I have made an impact somehow.  As I write mainly romance, I hope I have caused people to believe in true love or at least believe that lasting love is attainable.


What pays the bills now?

I will be as frank as I have in other interviews.  I do have side jobs.  I have since I was about 19 years old, ten years after I began on this writing adventure.  Presently, I book appointments for an entertainment company, and recently I started supervising on the weekends.  Additionally, I am working with my fiancĂ© on a medical device start-up.  Yes, I do all of this outside of writing.

Assuming writing doesn’t pay the bills, what motivates you to keep writing?

I have stopped thinking along the lines of finances when it comes to writing.  So many things are constantly changing in this industry.  For myself, I am happiest when I am deep into the writing of a scene, when the story is flowing and the characters are coming alive on the page.  So, I pour my heart and soul into the whole thing.  When the manuscript is finished, then I think about the technical aspects – like editing, finding critique partners or beta readers, and then publishing.  Publishing is always last.  When it is ready for a publisher, then you can work to get the attention of one.  But, there are all kinds of hoops to jump through during the publishing process as well.  

I think the three most satisfying things that motivate me are:  1) Writing the story.  2) Seeing the final work published – either in e-book or print format (That’s your baby out there, and it’s a proud moment!). 3) Hearing from a reader about how well they liked the book and why.  That’s validation that you have done your job to the best of your ability.  All of these things keep me writing, keep me focused on my next project.  Sure, as humans we need a break now and then from everything.  But, I always come back, ready to get to work on a new book.  First, I write for myself because I can’t imagine doing anything else for the rest of my life.  And second, I keep myself accountable to readers by putting out the best quality of work I can.

What advice would you give young authors hoping to make a career out of writing?

I think that when we all start out, we have stars in our eyes.  Believe me, I am a big fan of dreaming; I am also a dreamer.  But, new writers tend to think that once they make it big, they basically have it all.  I hate to be the utterly realistic parent here…but, look at the competition.  Count how many bestselling authors you’ve heard of against the ones you haven’t, the ones that are working their butts off every day to try to get to that level.  It can be disheartening sometimes. Hundreds of thousands of new books come out every year.  That’s what you’re up against.  

The point is to stop thinking about monetary goals.  Adjust them a bit.  Is your main goal to be published traditionally?  That’s great!  That is actually a manageable goal.  So, get out there and work on achieving it.  Pick up side jobs if you have to.  Hell, I know many authors who also have full-time professional jobs (unrelated to writing or publishing) alongside being writers.  All of us want to write full-time, but we may not be able to.  Don’t let that get you down.  Keep writing!

 
Put everything into small, manageable goals such as…“Today, I will work on my novel” or “Today, I will research my character’s job.”  Once you’re finished writing your manuscript, maybe your next goal is to find a good editor.  Always give yourself these smaller goals to work on, steps that will lead to your larger goals.  If you look too long at the bigger picture, you may become jaded and you will forget why you started this journey in the first place.  Reward yourself in small ways if you achieve your milestones.  If you finished your manuscript, go out and celebrate it with your friends and family.  Linger over it for a brief time, then get back to work.  You want to enjoy those successes as well.  

Constantly remind yourself of why you are writing at all.  If you are in love with writing, so to speak, you will realize it as you are immersed in your manuscript.  But, never, ever forget what you brought you to each level in your journey.  Where you started is just as important as where you end up.

Well, I definitely found these questions thought-provoking.  I’d like to invite my fellow authors to participate, even if they do it after NaNoWriMo.  I think a lot of aspiring writers could use this kind of information to pursue their dreams.  So, let’s make this an awesome blog tour!  :)