Guest Post and Giveaway: Keep the Faith by Ana Tejano

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Before marketing your book

When I finally decided to publish my book independently, I was told that going indie means we also had to work on the marketing. I knew it was going to be hard work, but I figured, hey why not? It should be fun, right?

A year after I published my first book, I took up a digital marketing certification course, which gave me a better perspective with regards to marketing. I never really had proper marketing training, even if I worked in the field so the course was eye-opening for me, and it helped me think of how I could use these lessons as an author.

So now that I’ve made myself credible (haha) – yay, you published your book! Now you want people – who are not your friends – to know about it. But before you start creating Facebook posts or tweeting up a storm on Twitter or adding all the #hashtags to your Instagram posts, here are some things that an author has to be very clear on first before jumping into everything:

Remember your WHY. Why do you write? Why do you want people to read your book? Your why will anchor all your writing and marketing efforts, so make sure you keep this in mind when you’re about to go out to the world with your book. People will buy and read your book because they believe what you believe. Or, they’re curious about why you believe what you believe. Knowing your why will also ground you, and help you to focus again when things don’t go your way.

Set your objectives and goals. And by this, it has to be something specific and measurable, and again, anchored to your why. Putting numbers on them will make it less lofty and will help you figure out how to reach it. For example – when I decided to put together this blog tour, my objective was to gain more reviews and create buzz for my book, and my goal is to have at least 20 bloggers to join. With those numbers clear in my head, it was easier to figure out what to post and when to post.

Understand your reader. Knowing your reader helps you to know how to reach them. While it’s tempting to say that your target market is “all readers,” remember that not everyone will like your book. Knowing your readers will help you know how to talk to them, find out where they are and then position yourself so they will be most receptive to your message. Knowing your reader is just like building characters: find out what they like, where they work, what are their online habits, what other books do they like to read? Once you have a pretty good idea of who your readers are – or who you want them to be – then it’ll be easier to strategize with your marketing.

Just like in writing, marketing your books can be a bit frustrating – but being hands-on with is a great learning experience. And just like in writing, don’t forget to have fun with it, too! Good luck, and happy marketing your book!

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Book Title: Keep the Faith

Release Date: July 31, 2016

Author: Ana Tejano

About the Book:

As a community development worker, Faith was quite familiar with heartbreak and recovery after all the time she spent on disaster relief missions. So when her five-year relationship ends right before she left for a mission trip to a typhoon-stricken town in Iloilo, she tries not to make a big deal out of it. How can she be broken up about a breakup when she’s with people who literally lost everything?

But now that she’s back, all Faith wants is for her life to go back to normal and have people stop looking at her with pity. Never mind that she still has a lot of questions about the breakup, or that she feels a tiny ache every time her ex comes up in conversations. She’s okay now, and happily distracted by Nico Tamayo, the attractive new guy at work.

With new possibilities in the horizon, Faith thinks she is well on her way to moving on. But when her past comes calling back to her, will all the good things in her present be enough to keep her on the path? Or will she finally learn that there was more to heartbreak and recovery than what she knows?

Links to Purchase:

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About the Author:

Ana Tejano has been in love with words and writing ever since she met Elizabeth Wakefield when she was in Grade 3. She has contributed several non-fiction pieces in print and online publications, and has been blogging for years. When she’s not writing, she works as a communications manager for a payroll outsourcing firm, and serves in CFC Singles for Christ in every other time that she doesn’t spend reading or sleeping. She lives in Metro Manila and is also known by another name in her other circles (but it’s not a secret identity, really).

Contact Links:

ENTER RAFFLECOPTER GIVEAWAY HERE:

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Excerpt #1:

“Hi.”

I froze at the sound of that now all-too-familiar deep voice—now less sleepy—and my panic gave way to anger. I turned around slowly.

Nico’s expression was friendly, oblivious to my seething. “I just want to say sorry for sleeping on your desk. Alvin told me you were coming back but I thought it wasn’t until Monday so I didn’t transfer immediately.”

“Did you touch anything here?” I pointed to my cubicle’s walls, ignoring his apology.

“Huh?”

“You’ve been using my desk since you got here. Did you remove anything?”

He shook his head, his messy hair flopping on his forehead. He brushed it away with a hand. “No. Why would I remove anything? I only sleep at other people’s desks, but I don’t take anything.” He gave me a cheeky grin at the last part, an attempt to make a joke, but I was too worked up to play along.

“Then what happened to my pictures, huh?”

ktf-quote-02“What pictures?”

I felt a light tap on my shoulder. I turned, and there was April, holding out a small paper bag. “Hey. I almost forgot to give you this.”

“April, do you know—”

“I heard you. They’re in the bag,” she interrupted gently. “I took your pictures down, okay? It’s not Nico’s fault. He didn’t even see them.”

I took the bag from her and peeked inside, and found the smiling face of my ex-boyfriend looking at me, beside my own. I was unprepared for the stab of pain when I saw our matching grins, remembering exactly when that photo was taken (second year anniversary, right after he took me out to dinner).

“I thought it would help if I cleaned it up when you told me what happened. I’m sorry I didn’t tell you.” She squeezed my arm, and left to answer her phone that started ringing again.

Squashing the urge to sort through the photos and memories, I shoved the paper bag in my bottom drawer, shutting the drawer with a loud click. When I looked up, I saw that Nico was gazing at me intently, and my face burned with shame again. Twice now. I can’t seem to get off on the right foot with this guy.

“I told you I didn’t know about anything,” he said, amused.

Well thanks a lot for rubbing it in. “If you hadn’t been sleeping on my desk then I wouldn’t have asked you.”

“Didn’t you learn much from what you saw on my profile?”

“I wasn’t stalking you!”

A small line formed between his eyebrows as if I was a Math problem that he was trying to solve. I tried to stare back at him but his brown eyes were too intense. Then to my surprise—and frustration—I saw the beginnings of a smirk tug at the corner of his lips.

“Aren’t you going to say something?” I crossed my arms.

Then his lips stretched into a full-fledged smile, a dimple popping on his right cheek. “I’m sorry. I promise I won’t sleep on your desk again.”

“Good,” I said with a firm nod. Then I started to feel a little silly for my outburst, especially after he seemed so gracious. “I’m sorry, too.”

“Peace?” he asked, extending his right hand to me. I uncrossed my arms and looked at his hand warily before glancing up at him again. He was still smiling.

“Okay,” I said, just a little begrudgingly, and reached out to shake his hand.

“My name is Nicolas, but everyone calls me Nico.”

“Hi, Nico,” I said, trying not to think of how warm his hand was. “I’m Faith. Faith Alvarez.” I let go of his hand. Too much hand-shaking was weird.

There was that dimple again. “I know.”

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Breaker: Blog Tour and Giveaway

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Welcome to the Breaker (Exile, Volume 1) Blog Tour and Giveaway! We’re both super excited about this new release and thrilled to be able to share it with you. Throughout this tour, we’re going to be introducing many of the characters within, and associated with, Exile’s bizarre shores, as well as introducing Exile itself. Then we’re going to top that off with a quick little teaser.

However, before we get into any of that we wanted to remind you that we’ve got a couple of awesome giveaways going along with the tour so be sure to read through to the end to find out how you could win either a Silver-plated Starfish Anklet (just by leaving a single comment!), or the grand prize of a signed, print copy of Breaker, a coordinates bracelet with the Believe. Seek. Prove. reminder so you can always find your way back to the island of Exile, and a $20 gift certificate to the Less Than Three Press book market.

The Character Discussion

Kelly Wyre: *checking list of characters* Okay. Who decided we were supposed to try to talk about “the mainland” like it was a *(#)&% character???

AF Henley: Um… you… did?

KW: Well. Then. Awesome. It’ll be the best post yet. Clearly. What is it you want to say about the mainland, Henley? The most incredible, edible, mainland?

AFH: Well, I wouldn’t say it’s exactly incredible. It’s barely credible.

KW: True. But then, that’s what apocalyptic-level disasters will do to you. Takes it out of you. Like soccer.

AFH: I played soccer. It kind of sucked — kind of like travelling across the country on a kinetic motor-scooter-cycle would, especially when the mainland IS such a miserable place. ‘Cuz war, disease, famine, and all that shite.

KW: Couldn’t have said it better, myself.

exile-breaker-coverThe Teaser

The cab slowed. It was one of many moving along the six grid lanes that would take them into the airport, and Eddie eyed the fading afternoon sky through the dirty windshield. The sun always seemed to set so fast in the metro centers, and Chicago was one of the worst when it came to heavily polluted metropolises. At home—in any of the rural developments, really—it was easy to forget that large stacks had once puffed unfathomable quantities of filth into the air, and had damn near poisoned the entire planet. Here, though, on what the books used to call Interstate 90 and what they now called Gridline Ninety, where the damage had lingered and everything from lungs to concrete finishes had suffered, it wasn’t hard to believe in the slightest. The entire city wore the scars of humanity’s abuse.

The airport loomed to the right of the grid lanes like a giant gray beast. Its old fashioned concrete exterior had a faded, dismal appearance. Not worth the trouble to tear down, a large tower still stood in the middle of the property, but it was no longer used for air traffic control. When he’d taken an interest in air travel a few years prior, the ‘Net had cheerfully told him all about the computer programs and grid-style management that the airlines had developed back in pre-Cure days.

Post-Cure advancements were vague. The ‘Net had advised him that most of his questions were of a classified nature. “Security management”—Security breach – search failed, please try again—and “Proprietary development”—Classified information, please try again with a different search—were not discussed.

Gillian had not been the only person on the planet with extra special talents, everyone knew that. And on more than one occasion Eddie had wondered if those “afflicted” people now ran the airlines. Someone with the right power to control heavy machinery. Someone who could save the airlines, which were all government controlled, some serious cash when it came to pilots and equipment maintenance. A human slave who carried the title of “Estranged” and worked under the scrutinizing eye of government officials.

Of course, his mother had told him the idea was ridiculous, that nobody used the Estranged for anything good. Ever. That was why they had to keep Eddie’s little “issue” a secret. No one could know. She’d make sure she kept him safe and out of the sights of the government if it killed her. If for no other than she couldn’t bear the thought of her friends finding out one of those belonged to her.

He heard her speak as though she sat next to him, “Do you want to end up like Gillian?”

Breaker (Exile Volume 1)

Copyright © 2017 by Kelly Wyre and A.F. Henley

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Blurb

Breaker

In the wake of several near-cataclysmic events, humanity created the Cure, a DNA-altering antidote to death by disease and old age. But all cures come with side effects: a small percentage of the population develops a wide range of powers, some of which are lethal to others, and some which are lethal to the wielder.

These people are called the Estranged, hunted and shunned, safe only on the Island of Exile. It is here that Kaeva and Eddie meet—and where they set a prophecy in motion, quite possibly sealing their own demise, and even the end of Exile.

Genre: Gay, Urban Fantasy

Notes: contains some explicit content and includes thoughts and discussions of past and potential suicide

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Purchasing Link

The Giveaway

On behalf of the tour, please join one, or both of our giveaways.exile-breaker-giveaway

Simply leave a comment below to be entered into a random giveaway for a silver-plated starfish anklet (and whatever else we can stuff into the envelope). Winner will be selected by random number at the close of the grand prize giveaway, one winner per blog post.

Also, enter the Rafflecopter below for your chance to win a signed, print copy of Breaker, a coordinates and message bracelet, and a $20 gift certificate to the Less Than Three Press book market.

For all the terms and conditions, please check out the t’s and c’s posted on the Rafflecopter.

** Please note the grand prize giveaway is being offered tour-wide and there will be one winner awarded for the entire event.

ENTER RAFFLECOPTER GIVEAWAY HERE:

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A great big thank you to Cinderella Stories for hosting us today, and another to you for joining in on the fun. Best of luck with the giveaway and we hope you enjoyed the post!

Until next time,

Kelly Wyre and AF Henley ❤

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About the Authors

Kelly Wyre enjoys reading and writing all manner of fiction, ranging from horror to romance. She used to work in advertising but is now happily chained to her writing desk and laptop. Kelly relishes the soft and cuddly and the sharp and bloody with equal amounts of enthusiasm. She’s a coffee addict, a workaholic, a chronic night owl, and loves a good thunderstorm. Currently Kelly resides in the southeastern United States.

Connect with Kelly!

❧ Website ❧ Blog  ❧ Twitter ❧ Facebook ❧ Fan Page ❧ Google Plus
❧ Tumblr – NSFW! ❧ Pinterest ❧ Amazon Author Page ❧ Goodreads

Henley was born with a full-blown passion for run-on sentences, a zealous indulgence in all words descriptive, and the endearing tendency to overuse punctuation. Since the early years Henley has been an enthusiastic writer, from the first few I-love-my-dog stories to the current leap into erotica. A self-professed Google genius, Henley lives for the hours spent digging through the Internet for ‘research purposes’ which, more often than not, lead seven thousand miles away from first intentions but bring Henley to new discoveries and ideas that, once seeded, tend to flourish. Henley has been proudly publishing with Less Than Three Press since 2012.

Connect with Henley

♥ Website  ♥ Twitter  ♥ Facebook  ♥ Amazon Author Page

♥ Google Plus  ♥ Tumblr – NSFW!  ♥ Instagram  ♥ Goodreads

Guest Post and Giveaway: We Go Together by Carla de Guzman

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We Go Together
by Carla de Guzman
Genre: Romantic Comedy
Release date: January 19, 2015

Links:
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amazon UK

Four Bad Writing Habits (And Why They’re Really Good) 

What kind of love would it be if it crumbled to pieces over one accusation_ If it doesn't endure, then what's the point_.png

Writing an outline then throwing it out the window

I always write outlines. I love them, I love plotting them and adding little notes to include my research and lines and ideas that I may get randomly. But then when I actually get to the business of writing the story, part or most of the outline goes out the window—sometimes because it no longer makes sense in the story or it feels redundant. That’s not a bad thing. I think when your writing deviates from your outline it’s more organic and logical to you. But I still refer to the outline to help me see where I wanted things to end. So if my deviation is too far from that, then I can change it in the manuscript.

Listening to music while writing

This is only a bad habit when you’re me, specifically. It’s really helpful until a good song comes on and, and I cannot. help. but. sing. I sing like Beyonce on tour when I’m alone, and it’s a great way to kill my groove and ground my writing to a halt. But listening to the right songs when you’re writing sets the mood sometimes. When I’m writing particularly sad scenes, the appropriate song can help me get into the right mindset.

Researching on the fly

I like a lot of descriptive specifics in my writing, and most of the time I only think of them when I’m actually writing the manuscript. So when I want to write a line like ‘the Sculpture Garden on the National Mall has opened up as an ice skating rink in the winter since it opened in 1999,’ I Google to back that up after I already wrote it. Then I fall into a research rabbit hole. It’s a great way to build worlds and find out more about the places and the things you’re writing about.

Using Facebook while writing

This is the ultimate death for my productivity. When I’m opening and closing different social media sites while writing, it means I’m stuck and I don’t know what to write next. When I notice that happening, I know it’s time for me to step back from my writing a little. I do the same when I paint, I walk away from it, clear my head a bit and come back.

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SYNOPSIS:

What happened to Beatrice and Benedick? They used to be in love. They used to be together. But something got in the way and its turned them into angry, bitter rivals that can’t get along, much less work together on a project that could change everything for Bea and Claudia’s little paper company.

Bea isn’t going to let Ben ruin her mood. Ben isn’t backing down from Bea’s barbs without a fight. But why is Claudia telling Hiro that Bea is head-over-heels in love with Ben? Why is Hiro convinced that Ben is in love with Bea?

Set in Washington DC, this book is a modern adaptation of WIlliam Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing

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GIVEAWAY: 

Join the giveaway for a chance to win by clicking the image below. Good luck! ❤

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Author, occasional illustrator, full-time traveler.

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Blog Tour ~ Interview and Giveaway: Underneath It All by Ysa Arcangel

Hello, Ysa! I’m so happy to have you here at Cinderella Stories. Welcome to my blog and thank you so much for granting me this interview. First of all, congratulations on your new book, “Underneath It All.”

1. Would you please tell us about your book Underneath It All. How long did you write this?

Underneath It All is a story forgiveness, love and the courage to follow your heart’s desires. It’s a story about a graduating college student Agata Ferrero and the newly appointed young dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, Reeve Gates.

This story not only focuses on two people fighting for their taboo love, but about love fighting the dark eyes of hatred and crashing a heart of stone. A kind of love that endures pain and forgives sins that brings the family back together.

2. When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?

As cliche as it may sound, when I haven’t read what I really wanted to read.

I’m an avid reader and an active member of the read/write site called Wattpad. You  think you have read it all but there’s more! I aspired to be one of those writers I look up to. My aspirations became a dream and that dream is now a reality.

3. Ms. Ysa, you’ve got a ‘day job’, what is your work schedule like when you’re writing? How does that work? Do you have a daily word count goal?

I don’t just have a ‘day job’ but also a perpetual job.I’m a mother of three and a wife of very grumpy hubby who hates to see me up until the wee hours writing like crazy.

At work during down time, I write.  On the train, on my way to work, I write on my phone. I writer wherever I can. I don’t have a daily word count goal but I see to it to write at least 1k whenever I can.

4. What is your writing process, do you work on an outline first or just go write without one?

I consider myself a half-blood pantser. I need a plan, a general idea. I write a rough outline of  the beginning, middle and end then pants all the way through.

5. What is one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books?

Along the way, I have learned a few hard and soft lessons in creating my books one of which is not to expect every reader will love your book.  As the old adage goes, you cannot please everybody. I just continue creating quality stories and branch out to different genres to broaden my audience and sharpen my writing skills.

6. What do you think makes a good story?

I think for me, when I think about a ‘good story’ I think about the actual construction of sentences, how the author put words together, creates well-developed and multi-dimensional characters, draws the readers in and the overall organization of the story. That’s the technical part of it.

But I think that the best indicator of a ‘good story’ is if it touches your readers in some way. That your readers might be able to completely put themselves in the shoes of your heroine.

Funny thing, one person’s trash-read is another person’s great-read. I do believe that just because you have a great story doesn’t mean you write well and the same is true in reverse.

7. Do you have other works in progress?

I have two paranormal/urban fantasy WIPs.

8. Your tips for aspiring authors?

My advice to aspiring writers, just write it! You’ll never know how long it’ll take you to write a story unless you begin writing. Go ahead, make that first step. Do not be afraid to share your work to the world. Criticism may break you but it will always sharpen your skill. Your work may not see the light of the day in an actual published book but at least you enjoy the journey regardless.

Build your author platform and fanbase before you take advantage of all the publishing path and tools available for you. Write as much as you can and when you get published, publish more books. Especially, do not give up on what makes you happy.

UNDERNEATH IT ALL

 

A senior at Gates University, Agata Ferrero knows without a doubt that Reeve Gates is off limits…

Students can’t date faculty, and Reeve has been appointed by his father as the new Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. But when a near accident with the front end of Reeve’s sleek sports car brings her in close contact with him, Agata can’t deny the flash of desire that consumes her.

Reeve Gates is a man hell-bent on revenge…

Abandoned in the care of his step-mother as a child, Reeve accepts the position at Gates University for the sole purpose of ruining his father’s career. What he didn’t expect was to be sidetracked by the sultry eyes of a student.

Resisting temptation is even harder than it looks…

When a sorority pledging incident leaves Agata stranded on campus in the middle of a treacherous storm, her better judgment falters and she accepts help from the young Dean she can’t get out of her head. Certain there is a beating heart underneath his stone-cold exterior, she escapes with Reeve on a romantic retreat away from prying eyes.

 

Blinded by retaliation…

Reeve manipulates his dying father into handing over control of the university—and immediately threatens to shut down the school as a form of cruel payback. His scheme sparks a campus-wide protest that leaves one of Agata’s professors dead and her future hanging in the balance.

Agata must fight to convince Reeve he is capable of forgiveness, and their taboo love is worth more than revenge.

But is there really a bright future awaiting…

Underneath It All

 

 

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Forever Night Stand: https://amzn.com/B019NK762C

Snippets of Memories: A Forever Night Stand Bonus Book (99 CENTS) https://amzn.com/B01ASFS4Q8

 

Ysa Arcangel is a Filipino author based in Manila. She works as a Spanish-English GDS Helpdesk by day and a writer by night. She is a loving partner to a chef and a mom to three amazing kids.
She enjoys creative writing and uses her obsessive nature by writing contemporary paranormal and romance fiction with lots of laughs, tears and sighs showcasing sweet, funny and badass female leads with raunchy and hot male love interests whether human or supernatural.
She’s a lover of coffee, tattoos, and giant dogs. She is also an extreme sports enthusiast. When she’s not writing, you can see her spending time with her family, reading, or having TV series marathons.

 

–– FOLLOW YSA ––

Blog Tour ~ Excerpt and Giveaway: Underneath It All by Ysa Arcangel

UNDERNEATH IT ALL
A senior at Gates University, Agata Ferrero knows without a doubt that Reeve Gates is off limits…
 

Students can’t date faculty, and Reeve has been appointed by his father as the new Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. But when a near accident with the front end of Reeve’s sleek sports car brings her in close contact with him, Agata can’t deny the flash of desire that consumes her. 

Reeve Gates is a man hell-bent on revenge…

Abandoned in the care of his step-mother as a child, Reeve accepts the position at Gates University for the sole purpose of ruining his father’s career. What he didn’t expect was to be sidetracked by the sultry eyes of a student.

Resisting temptation is even harder than it looks… 

When a sorority pledging incident leaves Agata stranded on campus in the middle of a treacherous storm, her better judgment falters and she accepts help from the young Dean she can’t get out of her head. Certain there is a beating heart underneath his stone-cold exterior, she escapes with Reeve on a romantic retreat away from prying eyes.
 

 Blinded by retaliation… 

 Reeve manipulates his dying father into handing over control of the university—and immediately threatens to shut down the school as a form of cruel payback. His scheme sparks a campus-wide protest that leaves one of Agata’s professors dead and her future hanging in the balance. 

 Agata must fight to convince Reeve he is capable of forgiveness, and their taboo love is worth more than revenge. 

 But is there really a bright future awaiting… 

 Underneath It All

 

 

 

EXCERPT #2:
EXCERPT 2:
He walked up to the counter and prepared a glass of orange juice. He grabbed a bowl and poured butternut squash soup into it. He prepared a cup of coffee and reheated a box of pizza and a bowl of spaghetti.
“Let’s eat.” He ordered and sat across from me. He stirred his coffee without taking his eyes off me.
“Thank you. It smells really good.” I gave him a grateful smile. Knowing he cooked for me, intentionally, on a day that meant nothing to the rest of the world, meant everything to me.
“Are you feeling better now?” he asked and shoved a spoonful of spaghetti in his mouth.
“Yeah, thank you.”
“If you were wondering if I was the one who changed your clothes, no. It wasn’t me, Tatiana did that; she was here earlier.”
“Oh, I see.” I nodded and began to sip my soup. I felt the liquid pour down my throat. The warmth of the soup enveloped my lungs and felt so good. “You shouldn’t have gone through all the trouble of bringing me here. You could have dropped me off at my dorm and left me there.”
“If I want to fucking spend time with you, I will, okay? I wanted to make sure you’re fine.”
There he went again changing moods. I swear there had to be something mentally wrong with this guy. No other person in my life frustrated me as much as he.
“Well, aren’t you sweet?” I smirked.
“So you want to tell me what happened this afternoon? What were you doing out in the storm, Agata? Are you trying to kill yourself?”
One quick bite then he got down to business.
My breath caught in my throat. I really didn’t want to
tell him.
“I was…” I paused and bit my lip. I wasn’t sure how to phrase it, “…finishing a task.”
Reeve paused with a fork halfway to his mouth. “Task?” he asked with a raised eyebrow. I didn’t answer.
“Sorority task?”
I mentally face palmed and nodded in confirmation.
“How long did I stay out there? You think I lasted thirty minutes out there?”
“I knew it,” he stated, shaking his head. “Agata, I don’t give a damn if you finished that fucking task or not. You scared the shit out of me; don’t you know that? You’re not joining the sorority.”
“I have the right reasons for joining.” I bit my lip.
“Reasons?” He gave me a confused look.
“The sisterhood is important to me.” I thought of giving him some lame excuse.
The room grew still. He stared at me, his face blank, and I couldn’t move.
“Are you kidding me?” His gaze was unyielding. “You think the sorority will save you from dying out there? They don’t give a damn, Agata!”
“It’s part of the process,” I reasoned out.
“That’s ridiculous.”
“You should have known it. You’re part of the organization.”
 “That’s why I don’t want you in!” He threw his napkin on his plate and shot up to his feet. I
remained silent and gazed at my food. “Agata, what’s gotten into you?” His words almost forced me to look at him.
“I’m leaving.” I stood from my chair but he grabbed my hand and pinned me to the wall. “For once, I wanted to do something for myself without thinking of whatever people might say,” I spat.
He released a heavy sigh and ran his fingers through his hair. “Agata, after three and a half years you thought of joining a sorority? For what?”
My chest rose and fell erratically as I met his eyes. “Once I finish my task and pass the initiation, I’ll be one of them. By that time, I can tell if this guy who keeps giving me mixed signals really feels
something for me. They say he
only dates sorority girls. If he will not date me, then it’s confirmed—he’s only messing around with me.”
I didn’t move a muscle as his eyes burned back into mine. A shaky gasp escaped from my lips and I flinched as he reached for my face. After pausing momentarily to observe my reaction, he went on to gingerly brush my tangled hair from my face.
“Agata, you’re not the type I want to date.”
I couldn’t speak. I couldn’t move. I couldn’t breathe. His words grated against my ears and it hurt like a bitch.
“You’re not someone I want to take out for dinner, walk home, kiss goodnight, nor say goodbye.”
He didn’t stop tearing with the knife, and pierced through the walls of my heart.
“Because you know what, Agata? I don’t want to just date you and walk you home. You’re someone I want to come home to, someone I want to cook dinner with, to sleep with, to kiss hard, and fuck harder.”
The words snapped out of his mouth quick enough to petrify me. I looked up at him; his plump lips were pursed into a stern frown. His eyes were darkened, no time for bullshit. I bit my lip, and with every
second that I didn’t reply his face grew more and more serious.
A small smile crept upon my lips and I looked away to hide my flushed cheeks. I couldn’t contain my happiness. I wondered how my mood had changed so drastically in this conversation.
He smiled, bringing his thumb up to graze my cheek. “You’re blushing.”
I reached up and quickly wiped my cheeks.
“Now, are you still joining the sorority?”
He came closer. Our noses were almost touching, his eyes never leaving mine. I held my breath.
I closed my eyes. He was going to kiss me. I could almost feel the touch of his lips on mine, his breath in my lungs. He leaned down, then I heard my stomach growl in hunger, which caused Reeve to chuckle.
“Hungry? Come on, let’s continue to eat.”
 

 

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Ysa Arcangel is a Filipino author based in Manila. She works as a Spanish-English GDS Helpdesk by day and a writer by night. She is a loving partner to a chef and a mom to three amazing kids. 
 She enjoys creative writing and uses her obsessive nature by writing contemporary paranormal and romance fiction with lots of laughs, tears and sighs showcasing sweet, funny and badass female leads with raunchy and hot male love interests whether human or supernatural.
 She’s a lover of coffee, tattoos, and giant dogs. She is also an extreme sports enthusiast. When she’s not writing, you can see her spending time with her family, reading, or having TV series marathons.
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Guest Post by AF Henley: Wolf, en Garde ~ Blog Tour and Giveaway

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In my limited experience with during blog tours, one thing stands out more than the rest: it gets harder and harder to think of something even mildly amusing or semi-entertaining to put at the beginning of them. My life, no word of a lie, is just not that interesting and I shudder to think of that moment when someone ends up leaving the comment, “you’ve said that before.” Or, as my mind will hear it, “Yes, yes; you’ve already told us that story five hundred times.”

So while I may have mentioned this already in my Road Trip blog tour (honestly, I can’t remember if I did), it is applicable so I will use it and I ask you to pretend you haven’t read it if you have…

I haven’t done a lot of travelling, but of the few places that I’ve driven through there were two that gave me the creeps: Baltimore, Maryland and Washington, D.C. I like to tell people that I’m sensitive to certain things (mostly I just watch too many movies), and I can say without doubt that those two cities pinged all kinds of “stay the f*ck away” bells. With Baltimore I guess I can understand. They’ve got one of the highest ranking violent crime rates in the country, and I have to imagine that if there is a cloud of presence that amasses above certain places, it must be a particularly nasty one over that stretch of land. As for Washington, though, I don’t quite get my oogie-boogieness over that one. It’s a beautiful city, with a lot of history, character, and monuments. Regardless, I always get all kinds of creepy-crawlies from the city and I avoid it completely whenever I can.

So, it made sense for me to make it the setting for Wolf, en Garde, and not just because that’s where Randy’s family lived. In my next post I’ll tell you about one of the creepier locations in the novel, but for this teaser I wanted to show you Washington as Lyle experiences it, alongside one of the locals.

Just a reminder, be sure to read through to the end of the post to find out how you could win your very own signed, print copy of Wolf en Garde, a sterling silver (nickel and lead-free) Howling Wolf Bangle, and a $20 gift certificate to the Less Than Three Press book market!

Tiny Teaser: Introducing – Washington, D.C.

They ran until Lyle’s legs were exhausted and trembling—down alleys and up staircases, over rooftops and across yards. They watched the fog crawl over the city and sat in silence as wanderers made cautious quick steps along sidewalks and walkways. Lyle was introduced to views that transported him back to time before industry and then in the next instant, at a turn of a corner or a shift in direction, had him staring in awe at just how far man had come and all that could be done with tools and equipment and engineering. It was a remarkable city; that Lyle had already known from his earlier trip out with the family. To see it at night, though—while streetlights cast halos through the fog, and headlights bore all but useless slivers of luminance into the darkness—was magical. Ethereal, even.

For a time, real life ceased to exist and Lyle became part of the fairytale. They were the villains of the brother Grimms’ pens, the dark shadows that children whispered breathlessly about, and no one was huffing for Lyle to stay away or hulk back, or admonishing him for his vile existence. With Arius, he belonged on the streets. They were the masters of the dark and the princes of nightmares, complete with Arius’s windblown hair, his own ruffled fur, and their shared grins over the tension in the shoulders and mumbles of the few that unknowingly passed them by. For though he and Arius weren’t seen, they were felt—Lyle could sense it in everything from scent to expression.

They ended their journey by the small plaza where they’d met, but it wasn’t the surface of the park that Arius led Lyle to. Instead, they began to descend into the underpass that had caught Lyle’s attention that first night he’d been out. The light inside the underpass was a sickly, jaundiced yellow. The smell of gasoline and diesel emanated from the open mouth of the entrance and lingered on all the surfaces—roadway, walkway, walls and ceiling. Rainbow remnants of oil slithered and pooled between the white lines of the asphalt. Though the city kept the structure sound and (Lyle had to assume) safe, there was an atmosphere to the underpass that made Lyle’s skin shiver under his fur. Without realizing he was doing it, Lyle tucked his head and pricked his ears up and forward.

Wolf, en Garde Excerpt
© AF Henley, 2016

Blurb

Wolf, en Garde

Three years ago Lyle made a mistake that cost him his freedom, and almost his life. Now, sick to death of watching his father love the man that Lyle wanted, Lyle accepts an offer to leave Wolf, WY behind and see what life in Washington, D.C. can do for him instead.

When Lyle comes across a seductive, attractive stranger with a fascinating yet terrifying view of humanity, he’s more than intrigued. It doesn’t take Lyle long to realize that Arius isn’t just playing games, though, and when Lyle runs across a secret in Arius’ lair he has no choice but to flee, even knowing his actions will enrage Arius.

On the run, with only a psychic’s second sight and his own instinct to help him, Lyle has nowhere to go but home. The only question is, will they have him when he shows up.

Genre: Gay, Paranormal, Urban Fantasy
Notes: Wolf, WY contains some explicit and violent content
Book 2 in the Wolf series

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Purchasing Link – save 15% by preordering your copy today! Discount available until May 17th

The Giveaway

Wolf en Garde Giveaway

On behalf of the tour, please join the giveaway by taking part in the Rafflecopter below. The prize consists of a sterling silver (nickel and lead-free) Howling Wolf charm bangle, a $20 Gift Certificate to the Less Than Three Press book market (free books!), and a signed, print copy of Wolf, WY.

For all the terms and conditions, please check out the t’s and c’s posted on the Rafflecopter.

** Please note that this giveaway is being offered tour-wide and there will be one winner awarded for the entire event.

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A great big thank you, as always, to Cinderella Stories for having me back as a guest. It’s an honour and a pleasure to be here, and I can’t thank you enough for all that you do, as I wouldn’t be able to do what I do without you. 🙂

And another huge thank you to you, my friends, for reading and joining me. Best of luck with the giveaway and I hope you enjoyed the post!

Until next time,

AF Henley ❤

About the Author

AF Henley_Avatar croppedHenley was born with a full-blown passion for run-on sentences, a zealous indulgence in all words descriptive, and the endearing tendency to overuse punctuation. Since the early years Henley has been an enthusiastic writer, from the first few I-love-my-dog stories to the current leap into erotica.

A self-professed Google genius, Henley lives for the hours spent digging through the Internet for ‘research purposes’ which, more often than not, lead seven thousand miles away from first intentions but bring Henley to new discoveries and ideas that, once seeded, tend to flourish.

Henley has been proudly publishing with Less Than Three Press since 2012.

For more information, please stop by for a visit at afhenley.com.

Guest Post and Giveaway – Earthquakes: A New Amsterdam Story by Kelly Wyre

Earthquakes Blog Tour Banner

Hi there! I’m so excited to be here today on Cinderella Stories to talk about my new novel, Earthquakes: A New Amsterdam Story. It’s the next installment in the New Amsterdam series, and it involves guns and ballet, two of my favorite things.

To celebrate the release, I’m doing a blog tour, and no tour is complete without prizes, amirite? I’m giving away a $25 Amazon gift card, a lovely necklace with a quote from Sinatra’s, Strangers in the Night – “Love was just a glance away, a warm embracing dance away” – and a free ebook copy of the book!

Earthquakes Prize Pack

How to enter? That’s easy… See the Rafflecopter Info below for all the ways to win!

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Winner will be selected at random after the contest closes on the 18th of March.

Meanwhile, I think I’d like to chat a bit about the characters in this world. It’s quite the web they weave. See?

New Amsterdam Character Web

CHECK OUT THE MASSIVE VERSION OF THE CHARACTER WEB RIGHT ‘CHERE.

I know that thing makes MY eyes cross, so let’s break it down.

Today? We’re going to talk about Tim Akkard

Dear Tim might be the only straight man left in New Amsterdam. He certainly feels that way sometimes.

Tim is rather non-descript; brown hair and eyes with a nice smile. He’s about Clark’s height – 6’1” or so – and a tad older than Clark (which puts Tim around Daniel’s age; early 40s). He’s naturally slim and stays that way because he often forgets to eat.

About a year and a half ago, or so, Tim lost his wife, Dana, to cancer. He still grieves her, and he is quite convinced there is no one else for him, now. They were perfect for one another. They were kink-compatible, for one thing. Tim’s a Dom-Daddy sort who builds S&M furniture as a side job to his career, which is in architecture.

Or he used to, until Dana got sick.

Tim’s a partner in an architectural firm, and it was that firm which built Bliss & Break. He’s also a 1/4 owner of those clubs. He handles the security, now, and rarely goes to the clubs at all. He rarely goes out, period, really, other than to work and occasionally to Lucian’s house.

Tim met everybody when Clark joined a support group for vets with PTSD after he was discharged from the services (and before he opened Glow or found his various other callings in life). Tim helped Clark organize a group for gay vets that works in conjunction with the various Rainbow Centers around New Amsterdam.

Tim does know about and occasionally support/participate in the activities of the Merry Band of Vigilantes (the nickname Clark gave to himself, Lucian, Chance, and all the rest of the men trying to take down crime in the City). He has no moral qualms about it, that’s for sure; anything to help out the common people he supports.

So that’s Tim. Even though he gets very little “screen time,” he’s one of the characters I get asked about the most regarding when we get his story. Believe me, I’d love to see this guy happy, so as soon as he lets me know what’s up? I’ll let you know. 🙂

As always, if you happen to have questions for this character, please feel free to ask ‘em in the comments! Follow the BLOG TOUR to learn more about the characters of New Amsterdam.

And to win prizes.

‘Cause PRIZES, y’all. They rock.

Thanks for reading!
Xxoo
Kelly

Want to Know More?

Check out the World of New Amsterdam

Peruse the Free Reads

See the Fan Art & Cool Stuff

And definitely catch up with Ellis and Bryn in Earthquakes, the latest installment of the New Amsterdam series. Need a taste? How ‘bout an excerpt?

PS – It’s better to read it with the SOUNDTRACK.

EARTHQUAKES: A New Amsterdam Story

Ellis had been close to martial artists when they were training. He’d sparred with Clark. He’d seen Kris and Daniel and all his friends shoot at the range. There was an economy of motion that the athletically and lethally inclined all shared. Ellis admired it, strived for it, and knew he’d never get there. He was a workhorse, not a prince of motion.

And as he watched Bryn begin to move – not merely stretch or contort but move – Ellis thought of churches and gods and houses of worship.

Bryn’s feet bent in ways Ellis had never seen. Bryn could balance perfectly on one foot or even a single toe. When Bryn shed his pants after a moment or two and took the first few steps in only a pair of snug briefs, Ellis wasn’t hit with a wave of arousal. He was struck dumb with awe. Every line of Bryn was defined. Even the lift of one arm and the point of his fingers were deliberate and beautiful. Ellis stood completely still and held his breath. He was in the presence of some sort of everyday magic and calling attention to himself might break the spell.

The concentration on Bryn’s face was unlike anything Ellis had ever witnessed. He didn’t exist for Bryn. Nothing did except the music, the motion, and whatever spirit had come alive in Bryn to make Bryn…shine. There was no other word for it. The light played through the windows and infused Bryn with incandescence.

And when Bryn started to dance, really dance, he outshone the sun. A turn here, a pointed foot there, a twist and a glide and… God, Ellis didn’t know what Bryn was doing. But he felt it. The music was hopeful and yet haunting, and Bryn’s dance tugged at every ache both old and new in Ellis’s body. Bryn’s face portrayed almost no emotion, but with every dart of his hand, every slice of his leg through the air, with every crumble, fall, and rise, Ellis was struck over and over.

I will try, said Bryn’s reach toward God and Heaven and all things on high.

Though I know I will fail, said the drop of Bryn’s arm.

I will carry on, said the sweep of his leg.

But I’ll lose, said an arch of his back.

I will fight, said a twisting leap.

I will fall, said the thuds of Bryn’s feet on the floor.

I want to love, said the open reach of Bryn’s fingers.

Please, said Bryn’s clutched fist.

Bryn’s expanse of chest, his shut eyes, and his rise onto his curled toes snapped something in Ellis, and as the music faded, Ellis couldn’t take it anymore. He shut off the music, strode to Bryn, and caught Bryn up in his arms. Bryn was sweaty and warm and breathing hard. Ellis couldn’t stop kissing him. Bryn melted against Ellis, resting heavily against him. Ellis ran a hand through Bryn’s hair.

“I see you,” Ellis whispered. “I see you.”

 ~*~

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Earthquakes: A New Amsterdam Story
Ellis Parker is a lucky man: he escaped his persecuting family, survived his tour of duty, and met Maxwell Clark in the city of New Amsterdam. Clark showed Ellis more than the ropes: Clark helped Ellis figure out who he is – a gay submissive with a massive fixation on a beautiful, mysterious ballet dancer named Bryn Rothe. Ellis knows a Good Man when he sees one, and he wants nothing more than to score a first date with Bryn.

Little does Ellis know that Bryn has a violent past that is crawling out of shallow graves to haunt him. Even his hectic schedule and beloved stage aren’t enough to distract him. It’s impossible for Bryn to figure out how he feels about Ellis with his demons between them, but when Ellis saves Bryn not once but twice, Bryn is forced to admit that there’s something about Ellis that Bryn might not merely want but need.

Together, they journey to the scene of Bryn’s original crime – Charles Towne, South Carolina. There they will dig up secrets that might explain Bryn’s tortured life but might also be his – and Ellis’s – undoing.

Own a Piece of the City – Get your copy of Earthquakes: A New Amsterdam Story, Today!

Connect with Kelly!

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Contest Fine Print:
This giveaway will run throughout the blog tour, and finish at midnight on March 18. Winner must be of legal age, and legally able to accept the prizes as awarded. By entering this giveaway, you are confirming your eligibility. Void where prohibited by law. Entries will be collected by Rafflecopter on each tour stop and via my blog post. No purchase necessary to win. Odds of winning are determined solely by the number of eligible entries.

Winner must respond within seventy-two hours of the congratulatory email and post. Posts will be made on my social media platforms. Winner may or may not be announced on the blog sites, in accordance with that site’s preference. It is the responsibility of the winner to watch for the announcement. A new winner will be redrawn otherwise. Shipping costs will be to the expense of Kelly Wyre, and can be shipped worldwide, where legally permitted. This contest is not sponsored by Blogger, Amazon, Facebook, Goodreads, Twitter, Tumblr, or any of the sites wherewith the giveaway has been posted. By entering this giveaway you agree to hold Kelly Wyre and designates harmless should something go awry with either contest or the prizes awarded.