Friday, September 28, 2018

Stonebearer's Betrayal Cover Reveal and Guest Post!

I met Jodi one night on Twitter while I was working on the manuscript that got me into Pitch Wars. I'm excited to help reveal the cover for her debut, Stonebearer's Betrayal, which sounds really good! It will be out November 13, 2018 through Immortal Works Press.

Before we get to Jodi's beautiful cover, here's her guest post...

Moved by Magic and Music

There’s an assumption that writers sit in a coffee shop and channel their muse. If the right mix of chemicals hit their brain at the right time, wonderful words pour out onto the page. For those creative people where that set up actually works, kudos to you.

It’s often said, “there is no wrong way to write.” For every writer there is a special set of magic needed to make the words happen. For me, I love finding magic in the world around me. Sometimes it’s in the details of a flower or a dragonfly’s wing. Sometimes magic finds me when I read stories and the words on the page fly into my mind and create pictures. Sometimes I feel magic in the deep emotional throb of an impressive musical piece.

And sometimes I have to beat down my muse with a flyswatter and shake the words out of her.
While writing Stonebearer’s Betrayal, I explored ideas from compelling TV shows I grew up watching and put them together into one gripping story. There’s the attractive intrigue of immortals that stems from watching The Highlander – with Adrian Paul. There’s the drama of an intense life and death situation from old school ER with George Clooney. There’s an ample splash of magic from unnumbered 80’s cartoons. And finally, there’s my personal belief that girls can do hard things.

Here’s to finding your own special magic, dear reader. You too can do hard things.

Thank you for the inspiration, Jodi! Now to show you Jodi's cover!

To get you ready, here's a bit about the story:

A secret society of immortals tasked to protect the world.
A demon bent on revenge.
And a girl brave enough to fight for her family when the two collide.
When Archdemoness Wrothe stirs the ashes from a long dead war, it rekindles a fire that threatens to burn the world. The immortal Stonebearers have the power to bring her down, if they learn of her awakening in time.
Katira didn’t believe the legends. It wasn’t possible for a person to bend the very fabric of reality or live forever. She didn’t believe in the dark mirror realm either or that forces were at work to destroy the waking world.
That was before the first demon shadow hound came for her.

You can pre-order it on Amazon.

Growing up, Jodi L. Milner wanted to be a superhero and a doctor. When she discovered she couldn’t fly, she did what any reasonable introvert would do and escaped into the wonderful hero-filled world of fiction and the occasional medical journal. She’s lived there ever since.

These days, when she’s not folding the children or feeding the laundry, she creates her own noble heroes on the page. Her speculative short stories explore the fabric of dreams and have appeared in numerous anthologies and SQ Magazine, while her novels weave magic into what it means to be human.

She still dreams of flying.

You can find Jodi at her website, and the usual places, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Goodreads.

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Next Girl To Die Cover Reveal and Guest Post by Dea Poirier

I'm thrilled to share this cover as it belongs to my best friend and critique partner, Dea Poirier. I've been with her through every step of this book and read it a couple times at various stages. Dea worked hard and I'm so proud of her.

Before I show you her beautiful cover for Next Girl to Die, Dea shares her thoughts on how the story came together.

Birth of a Crime Novel

by Dea Poirier

Once upon a time, I never dreamed I’d write anything like NEXT GIRL TO DIE. Several years ago, I wrote thrillers, but they were of the YA supernatural variety. I never thought about writing suspense or mysteries until my agent suggested it. She’d mentioned that she had many editors clamoring for dark, female protagonists that were a bit morally gray, and she suggested that I might be able to write characters like that. Within my YA projects, I already had a penchant for morally gray, so I decided to give it a shot. Though I’ve watched plenty of crime shows, listened to true crime podcasts, and know way more about serial killers than any human should know – I wasn’t confident about writing a book so entrenched in crime and mystery – especially from a detective’s point of view. It came in layers, so, so many layers.

After watching way too much SVU, bingeing on other crime novels – I started NEXT GIRL TO DIE. I’d never tried writing something like it, didn’t even know if I could. But I started researching small islands that could make a creepy home for this story. I wanted something remote, but not too remote. And finally, Vinalhaven Maine stood out to me as the winner.

I wrote the first draft furiously – and shortly after I got the bones of the story down, my grandmother died. Though it did not come as a shock, she’d been in failing health for a while, it was still a blow. My grandmother helped raise me, I lived with her most of my life, so losing her was akin to losing part of myself. In NEXT GIRL TO DIE, my main character Claire is grieving the loss of her sister, a death she’s been grieving for 15 years. Writing this book helped me pour my own pain, my own struggles with grief into something. And I found that it helped. I was able to write out my pain, to etch some of that into Claire’s soul.

After writing that first draft, I edited it, added layers to the story, and poured my heart out into a small town with many secrets – and a heroine that has just as many, if not more.

Now that you know how the book came together, here's the beautiful cover!

Solving the case will avenge her sister—unless the killer finds her first.

It’s been fifteen years since Claire Calderwood’s sister, Rachel, was brutally murdered in their small hometown in Maine. Claire has finally carved out a life for herself as a homicide detective in Detroit, but the past comes calling when the local police back home ask for her help with a murder eerily similar to Rachel’s.

Still haunted by Rachel’s cold case, Claire returns home, hoping to solve the crime and finally put her grief to rest. As she starts investigating, the last thing she needs is tenacious journalist Noah Washington asking questions she’s not ready to answer. But like her, Noah won’t give up until he finds the truth—and Claire reluctantly finds herself relying on him more and more when disturbing new details about Rachel’s death come to light.

When the killer strikes once again, Claire knows he’s not done. Now he’s set his sights on Claire, who will have to find the courage she needs to survive a deadly confrontation years in the making.
NEXT GIRL TO DIE set for release May 1 2019, is now available for pre-order on

Dea Poirier was raised in Edmond, Oklahoma, where she found her passion during a creative writing course. She studied computer science and political science at the University of Central Oklahoma. She later spent time living on both coasts and traveling the United States before finally putting down roots in central Florida. She now resides somewhere between Disney and the swamp with her husband, son, two dogs, and two cats.

Find her on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, or Bookbub.