Posted in Books and Authors, Dragon Soul Press, Writing Endeavors

First Love reminder

Quick Reminder!

First Love: A Dragon Soul Press Anthology (Epic Romance Anthology Book 1)

Publisher: Dragon Soul Press

Release Date: February 28, 2019

Genre: Romance

ebook – $4.99 (available now for preorder)

paperback – ? (coming soon)

Where: Amazon

Contributing Authors: Meg Boepple, Sofi Laporte, Kathryn St. John, Zoey Xolton, Melinda Kucsera, A.R. Johnston, Simon Dillon, A.M. Cummins, Edeline Wrigh, D.S. Durden, A.D. Carter, Galina Trefil

335 pages full of romance. Keep your eyes open for more news as the time draws nearer. There’ll be a launch party on Facebook full of games, giveaways, and tidbits from all the authors. More info available soon.

(In an aside, life has dictated that the majority of my writing be put aside. I’ll continue trying to get short stories out into anthologies, but my Fathom’s Below has been put on the back burner for the time being. It’s unfortunate but the reasons behind my change of plans are all good, so I’m attempting to go with the flow and keep a positive attitude.)

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Posted in Books and Authors, Fairytales/Myths, Writing Endeavors

New Books…yes, plural!

I was hoping to make these announcements in December but life was too hectic. Just as well. I had good news already in December. It’s nice to start the new year off with more good news.

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My first announcement is that I finally settled on which project to work on.

Fathom’s Below

Fathom’s Below is going to be a retelling of The Little Mermaid from Hans Christian Anderson. Don’t expect Disney. This isn’t light and happy. There is no Sebastian, Flounder, or Scuttle. There will be no singing and dancing. That’s not to say the Disney version wasn’t awesome. I grew up with it and still love it. I’d dream about being a mermaid and wish and hope all the time that there was some kind of magic potion that could change my legs into a tail. Lacking that potion, I’d find pants that were way too big (not an easy task for an overweight kid who usually had to squeeze into her pants to begin with) so I could use one pant leg for both my legs and pretend I had a tail.

The only reason I haven’t bought one of those mermaid tail blankets from Walmart etc is that I chronically forget things so I’m always sitting down and standing up millions of times before I get situated…at which point I then have to go to the bathroom. It’s not practical for me to bind my legs up in a tail in that case.

In my world, mermaids drown sailors. They don’t avoid them and then fall in love with them, they kill them. Briny is my mermaid and she’s obviously the exception to the rule as she has to fall in love with the prince. Her story will not have a happy, lovey dovey ending. Why is this not a spoiler? Read the original Hans Christian Anderson story. His Little Mermaid dies! Because of her choices, instead of becoming foam after her death, she becomes an air spirit. I’m not saying my Briny will die…but I’m not saying she won’t. All I’ll say is that she’s not Ariel getting a Happily Ever After with her Prince Eric. This is not Disney…which is good because I would be treading on copyright infringements if it was.

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My second announcement is that I was accepted into another anthology! Yay!

First Love Anthology

First Love is a short romance story anthology from Dragon Soul Press. My story is called A Season’s Time. It was really difficult getting this story completed. It will have a dryad…hamadryad actually…and a young man. Leaf and Bastian. Although writing this story wasn’t “fun,” I did enjoy pushing myself to try something different. It was a struggle from start to finish. I’m glad it’s done, and I’m looking forward to doing more.

I enjoy writing short stories because they’re like writing exercises. They’re not long so they don’t take months and months like a book takes. I can try something entirely new and see how I do. For example, in A Season’s Time, I’m writing it from Bastian’s perspective. While I’ve written male characters plenty of times, I had never dived into one and written from his viewpoint. I think that’s what made this story so difficult for me. I didn’t want him sounding like a woman, not did I want him to fall victim to stereotypes. I believe I managed it.

First Love will be released February 28, 2019. As time draws near, I’ll have more info for everyone. I’m really excited about this. The last anthology of theirs that I was accepted into was All Dark Places. It was the debut of my horror pseudonym. This time, I’m back to my fantasy pseudonym – Kathryn St. John.

Posted in Night's Treasure, Psyche, Shadow's Strength

Winter Holiday Deals

I was hoping to have different news for my December post, but no. I’ve been attempting to write a short story to submit to an anthology, but it’s been slow-going. I don’t usually have this much difficulty getting a short story out. It’s like archaeology where you find part of a bowl but then can’t seem to find the rest of it.

Anyway, on to the real news!

So to celebrate the winter holidays, I’ve decided to give my books away for FREE! Not All Dark Places because I have no control over that one. I’ll be sticking with my Kathryn St. John fantasy books. All three cover Greek mythology, none are suitable for children. Here’s the schedule:

December 17-21 (Monday through Friday)

December 24-28 (Monday through Friday)

December 31 – January 4 (Monday through Friday)

These books are normally $2.99, $3.99, and $4.99, respectively. During the times listed, however, the ebooks will be completely FREE on Amazon!

Sale starts tomorrow for most people! Unless you’re in a time zone where it’s already the 17th. If you are and you see that Psyche is already available, go for it! But for the rest of us, we’ll have to wait till Monday. I’d also be eternally grateful if you’d also leave a review or just stars on Amazon or Goodreads. Even if it’s a negative review, authors desperately need them. I get so giddy when I see someone’s done a review, or on Goodreads, left stars. ❤ Thanks!!! Happy Reading!

Posted in All Dark Places, Books and Authors, Night's Treasure, Psyche, Shadow's Strength, Writing Endeavors

New Book Updates!

Holy! Moly! It’s been a loooooong time since I last posted. I’d say it’s because I had nothing to say, but that’s only half true. I had something to say a couple weeks ago, but I forgot. Well…now I have three things to say! I’ll go in chronological order.

All Dark Places

All Dark Places is a horror anthology released by Dragon Soul Press. Within this book is the debut of my horror pseudonym – Anna Sinjin. I won’t go into how I chose that name except to say that it is, in fact, part of my real name. There are five short horror stories, mine is the second – The Cursed Mirror by Anna Sinjin.

I was pretty excited to participate in this anthology. One, because it was my first anthology. Two, because it was with an actual publishing house. And three, because it was horror, and horror is my true love. They were pretty nice to work with, and I’m currently working on another short story for another anthology of theirs. It’s romance this time. Hopefully, it’ll be accepted as well, but who knows. If nothing else, I got my horror name out there and have met some amazing people.

Ruxandra Tudorica made the front cover, while the back cover for the paperback was created by someone else whose name I don’t know. In any case, it’s a wonderful cover with just the right amount of fun mixed in with the horror. The formatting is awesome, the stories are awesome. Everything is AWESOME! If you don’t know by now, “awesome” is one of my favorite words (and I also love the Everything Is Awesome song from the Lego Movie, so…yeah). I’ll talk more about Rux later in this post because I didn’t work with her on this (the publishers did), but I did work with her on my third piece of news.

E-book – $3.99

Paperback – $14.99

Psyche (Myths of Olympus series)

I made a MAJOR update to Psyche from the Myths of Olympus series. Between the time it was published and this year, I’ve made some serious advancements in my editing and formatting knowledge. It was brought to my attention that I hate commas…or had just gotten supremely lazy with them because I tend to ignore a lot of grammar rules in my off-time. I also learned that the formatting I was using was ONLY for submitting manuscripts to agents. Cue The Scream. So I stopped everything I was doing and went through the book, editing and formatting like a fiend till it was as close to perfect as I could get it.

Another thing that pushed me to fix all the errors was that I had a new cover!! Isn’t it lovely? Lily Dormishev created it for me. I am SO in love with it!! I gave her a general idea of the book, along with another cover she had done that had started this obsession in the first place, to let her know the style I really liked. She went from there to create a work of art! I’m constantly drooling over her work and forcibly holding myself back from buying her covers. I should stand up as I say this and go on with, “Hello, I’m Katie, and I’m a cover addict.” Cue the sobbing into my hands as I sit back down. There are perhaps a handful of covers I’m itching to buy, but I can’t because I already have too many projects lined up that I’ll probably be busy writing for the next decade (yay!). Honestly though, I’m really not sure how long I’ll be able to hold out. Maybe another year at the most? I need to write faster. I’m going to horde my Christmas money for future covers.

Anyway, go to Lily’s site if you want to check out more of her work or order a commission yourself – Lily Dormishev. Even if you aren’t a writer and have no need of book covers, you should still check it out just for some serious eye candy.

Soooo, after I finished fixing Psyche and saw this awesome cover Lily made for me, I went a little crazy. Her prices are so reasonable…I couldn’t help it! I had a gorgeous new cover, fresh editing, fresh formatting…I needed a paperback as well.

Did you know a paperback another set of completely different formatting? Yep. And there’s a lot more to do for it too. I posted about my formatting woes till it got to the point where someone suggested I make “format” my new F word. I actually liked that idea quite a bit, so if you hear me say something like, “What the format!” you’ll know I’m cursing in my own unique way…and I’m probably extremely ticked off because I don’t usually drop the F bomb.

I’m going to skip all those details, but I will say, after much hassle, the e-book and paperback are available to buy on Amazon.

E-book – $2.99

Paperback – $10.99

Shadow’s Strength (Daughter of Nyx Book 2)

This has been two years in the making! I cannot believe it’s finally happening. Book 2 of the Daughter of Nyx series is finally being released! It’s currently available for pre-order as an e-book on Amazon. Paperbacks won’t be available until the third and final book of the series is out. Only then will I start to bring them out as paperbacks. I already have the appointment made with the designer, so there’s no way I can be tempted to bring them out sooner.

Who’s the designer? The lovely Ruxandra Tudorica who also did the cover for the first book, Night’s Treasure! While the first book was a premade that was tweaked to better match my preferences, this cover was a pure custom job. I seriously like how the covers are coming along and can’t wait for the third one and then the paperbacks as well. It’s so exciting! Rux is awesome to work with. Friendly yet professional and awesomely talented. Her works speaks for itself. If you’re interested in more of her work (or to commission her yourself), you can head on over to her website – MethyssART.

By the way, quick note on Night’s Treasure since I mentioned it earlier. It needs some major editing and formatting (just like Psyche did). It’s on my To Do list, and I’ll be working on it slowly as a side project, but don’t expect it to be finished within a week or anything. I mention this in case you take a look at the book and decide it’s worthless because the formatting is wrong and my commas are disastrous. Please don’t hate me for past comma crimes!

E-book – $4.99

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That was a long post, I know. Kudos to you if you made it this far. I promise not to wait till I have a mountain of news before posting again. In fact, I should have some news in December so expect something that month. There’s the short romance story I’m working on for another Dragon Soul Press anthology and then there’s my next novel project. Preferably, I’ll be able to give updates one at a time instead of both at once.

Posted in Books and Authors, Night's Treasure

Book Cover Artists + Cover Reveal

Early in January I was finally able to update my cover art for Night’s Treasure. I was so excited! I meant to announce it here but looking back I see that I forgot. But that’s okay because it’s not like it was a new book or anything.

Here’s the new cover made by the oh so talented Ruxandra Tudorica (MethyssART)…

Click on the art to buy Night’s Treasure by Kathryn St. John, available on Amazon for $3.99

I love it! It’s soooo much better than what I did myself. If I had had better graphic artist skills (mine are next to none), I would’ve bee happier with how mine turned out but I could not get past the grey blur around the silhouette. It ruined the whole thing for me!

My friend and fellow author, EarthGirly, won a premade from Ruxandra and gave it to me (having only entered because she had thought it would be perfect for Night’s Treasure). I was ecstatic!! Truly ecstatic. Three days later it was personalized for me and gracing Amazon as the new cover of Night’s Treasure!

In the delirium of my euphoria, I joined Ruxandra’s Facebook group (Methyss Art Premade Covers – the group is closed so you need to be given permission to get in) and have one future commission appointment set for August and then fingers crossed for other covers. If you’re interested, take a look at her page. Her work is beautiful and she’s so nice, patient, and friendly!

Through her I also found Ryse’s Cult. The artist there is Jennifer Munswami (J.M. Rising Horse Creations).

Holy. Freaking. Cow!

That’s all I have to say about her work. When I found out I had won a giveaway from her (amazingly gorgeous artwork that another author won in an auction plus a bunch of other stuff), I was so excited I started tiptoeing around and squealing (tiptoeing because that’s my version of jumping around, and squealing because it was 6:30am and I didn’t want to wake anyone up by screaming). Every time I thought about it for the rest of the day I’d get all giggly and start tiptoeing around. People around me would just laugh.

That day was absolutely exhausting.

Here’s some recent cover art of hers that’s been released…

Click on the art to preorder the book Soul Bound by A.J. Flowers

The auction for this cover got intense toward the end. They usually do. This one was won by A.J. Flowers. Soul Bound by A.J. Flowers is available for preorder on Amazon for $4.99.

Jennifer is pretty much booked till the end of time (only half kidding), but there are always last-minute cancellations and premades you can try your luck with so pop on over there too if you’re an author who loves quality covers. Or maybe you just want to oogle her work or buy extra swag or create brand artwork for yourself (not sure if she’s available for that right now or not), etc.

There are more but those are the main two I’m crushing on right now. Totally stalking and not ashamed.

Posted in Personal

New Year’s Resolutions – 2018

Wow! It’s been a long time since I last posted on this blog. Minus today’s post on my fitness blog – Fitness Freak – concerning my fitness-related resolutions/goals, it’s been a long time since I’ve blogged at all.

My fitness life has been super busy so that all I’ve been doing for my writing life is reading books – audiobooks and books with my son during his reading time at bedtime. I had a Goodreads goal to read 150 books in 2017. I failed. I got really close – over 140 in fact – but 150 was out of my reach.

For 2018, I’ve gone back down to 100 books. If I was only reading, I’d try for 125, but my resolutions are going to take up too much of my time. There are my fitness goals, yes, but a huge amount of my free time during the day will be spent writing now. Yep! I’ve resolved to get my butt in gear to write Shadow’s Strength, the sequel to Night’s Treasure.

2018 Goal:

  • Write 1st draft of Shadow’s Strength

There’s just the one goal. SS has spent so long on the back burner due to my fitness life commitments, it’s ridiculous. So this year I’m finishing that 1st draft! I’m not demanding that it be in publishable condition – just the first draft. Editing can take forever but so can a single draft, especially when you’re severely out of practice, so one step at a time.

So! That my writing resolution for 2018! What are your goals or resolutions?

Posted in Personal, Writing Endeavors

Why I Can’t Commit to Reading One Book at a Time

Today on FB I listed the 6 books I’m currently reading and then asked why I can’t commit to reading one book at a time. It was supposed to a quick answer but as I typed I realized I needed more room than I was willing to give on a FB post. I know I sometimes write long FB posts but, believe it or not, I don’t like doing that.

Here’s my current list of books:

  • “Shadow House You Can’t Hide” by Dan Poblocki
  • “Refuge” by A.I. Nasser
  • “We’re Alive: A Story of Survival, The Second Season” by K.C. Wayland
  • “Cranford” by Elizabeth Gaskell
  • “Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets” by J.K. Rowling
  • “Heaven and Earth” by Nora Roberts

The same list is on Goodreads. I didn’t list the last 2 books on my Goodreads list because I’m not actively reading those 2. I should take them off because I don’t intend to finish them in the near future, but I’m lazy when it comes to deleting books from the list.

So why can’t I commit to reading one book at a time? There a various reasons and they all sound reasonable to me…of course or I’d stick with the one book.

  • Filler

I’ll end a book and then start one I’ve already read (Heaven and Earth) in order to pass the time before a new book comes my way. I’ll eventually finish this book but not for awhile.

  • Inspiration

Sometimes I’ll be watching a show or movie that inspires me to read the book. That was exactly what happened in the case of Cranford.

  • Freebies/Suggestions

I might come across an interesting freebie book that snags my attention or someone may suggest an interesting book so I’ll put everything on hold to read it. In the case of Refuge, I had gotten an e-mail from Team Scarestreet asking if I was interested in reviewing a free audiobook series by A.I. Nasser. I submitted my application to be a reviewer, was accepted, and received my promo codes for the books on Audible.com. Refuge is the 2nd book of the series. The first one, Kurtain Motel, I couldn’t stop listening to and powered through it so when it ended I immediately went on to the 2nd book.

  • Traveling

I’ll keep a family friendly audiobook for car trips. Unfortunately, since car trips don’t commonly last more than 30 minutes and we don’t always listen to the audiobook on those trips, it takes a horrendously long amount of time to get through one of those books. Such is the case with Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.

As for Shadow House and We’re Alive, both of these fall under the Freebies/Suggestions category. In the case of We’re Alive, someone had suggested it as a good podcast for people who like the app Zombies, Run! so I subscribed to the podcast and was wowed, not by the sometimes painful voice acting but by the story.

I was ordering some books for my son from Scholastic.com. Order forms are sent home each month for each class. We don’t usually get anything, but my son’s favorite books were there this time so I gave in. I tried it online this time and saw a notice on their site for Shadow House. I love horror and the cover looked interesting so I read a sample. I found it as an audiobook on Hoopla so I borrowed it last night and finished it by this afternoon. It was fun. Simple, obviously meant for younger teens, but still enjoyable for an adult assuming you don’t mind that it’s not complex and long etc. I’ve moved on to the second book or I will very soon so I’ve already added it to my list.

Believe it or not, my list does wittle down to 0 books every now and then but it doesn’t happen often and when it does it doesn’t stay that way for long.