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New cover for The Love Machine!

New rockstar cover as of April 2022!

All a sixteen-year-old up-and-coming rockstar needs is a Love Machine—and Alva’s invented one.

Alva’s a genius sixteen-year-old inventor and a wannabe rockstar. He’s invented a Love Machine, but he’s about to learn the cost of using it might be higher than he ever imagined.

The Love Machine: So simple it could be included in a cringe infomercial. All someone has to do is hold a button on the device near someone’s left ear for sixty seconds. Easy peasy lemon squeezy. In return, the target falls in love with the user for one day.

But when Alva loans the Love Machine to his fellow band-mates, their dates go off the rails. One friend even winds up humiliated and beat up.

Can the boys in the band use their power for good? Or will the Love Machine ruin every relationship they try it on? And what happens if the guys have a falling out? Between being rockstars, unlucky in love, and making messes in their relationships, they might just discover a Love Machine causes more problems than it fixes. But can they fix what they break before ruining lives forever?

What I’m Reading: Book Marketing Is Dead

Book Marketing is Dead is a free downloadable book by indie author and guru Derek Murphy (available here). The thesis of his book is that the old way of book marketing–hiring publicists, sending out press releases, going to book signings or on book tours, and, except in very limited circumstances, advertising–is no longer the way to sell independently published books, if it ever was. The new way to sell books is by building relationships with readers, potential readers, and other authors in your genre, and he explains how to do this.

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Top Five Songs to Inspire Horror Writers

“Oh yeah, I always do my best work listening to Maiden.”

In earlier posts, I suggested Five Songs to Inspire Writers and Five Songs to Inspire Fantasy Writers, but sometimes, you’re trying to scare the pants off your readers. Or, to paraphrase Steven King, if you can’t scare your readers, you can always gross them out. In any case, sometimes you’re looking for songs that’ll pump you up to put the wickedest, scariest, most horrifying imagery on the page you can think of. When that’s what you need, try one of the following songs for inspiration.

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Top Five Songs to Inspire Fantasy Writers

So which prog rock group should I listen to today?

In an earlier post, I suggested Five Songs to Inspire Writers, but as a fantasy writer, you might need something a bit different. That’s why I’ve assembled here the top five songs to inspire scenes of mist-shrouded landscapes, noble quests, and mind-bending magic. Read below to see what I’ve picked out.

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Six Reasons Every Writer Should Join a Writers’ Group

Are you looking for that secret element to improve your writing? Do you wish you knew where you could get some personalized advice on writing, editing, or publishing from someone who knows your situation? Do you just need help getting motivated? There’s one answer to all these writerly problems, and I wrote for years before I found it: the writers’ group.

I’ve now been a member of a writers’ group for eleven years, and I’ve come to believe being in a writers group is the number one thing you can do to turbocharge your writing and career. It’s so essential, I would recommend it to any writer. I’m not sure there’s another way for most writers to get out the best writing we’re capable of. Here are the top six reasons to join a writers’ group:

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Top Five Songs to Inspire Writers

I’m not one of those writers who wants music on or a lot of background noise while I’m writing. In fact, I prefer writing early in the morning before anybody else is up, precisely because of the quiet. Nevertheless, there are some songs that I like to listen to before I start writing, to get me in the mood for punching out my word count for the day. Click below to see five of my favorites.

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Read My Latest Book!

What do you do when everyone around you is keeping dark secrets and only you know the truth?

Finding Big Joe dead is just the start of J.T.’s nightmare. Inside a pouch J.T. found in Big Joe’s house are photos of the town’s leading citizens caught in dirty deeds… perhaps they’re the reason Big Joe wound up dead? When the Sheriff responding to the call shoots Big Joe’s dogs, J.T. makes a snap decision that’ll change everything.

Now, J.T. and his cousin and best friend Rache—the smartest, fastest, and cussingest girl in fifth grade—make a break for it, fleeing the hometown they’ve always known on a canoe trip down the river. They hope to get the photos to someone who can help them expose the crooked sheriff and corrupt elite, searching for help among the people, friendly or sinister, living along the water’s edge. But the bad guys will do anything to cover their tracks and save themselves…even if it means hunting down and killing a couple kids who know too much for their own good.

What I’m Reading: Bodies Full of Burning

Hey, it’s a Writers of Chantilly book, sort of! Bodies Full of Burning is a horror anthology, and one of the stories is by WoC writer D. A. Jobe. And I really probably wouldn’t have picked this up if not for that, as the theme of the anthology is menopause.

Actually, menopause turns out to be a pretty good theme for horror, which may or may not surprise people, particularly women of a certain age. Hot flashes, weird lusts and desires, the desire for revenge against men who don’t understand, the end of monthly bleeding, and a general overall idea of transformation into something new…all ripe material for a horror writer. I’ve read quite a few horror and SF anthologies over the years, and this one is well above average.

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