Friday, July 11, 2014

Writer's Report - Slow & Steady Wins the Race

It's been ages since I've posted! The good news is that I'm still alive and I'm writing, albeit the words aren't coming as quickly as I'd necessarily like. Writing has taken a back seat in the game of life, but I still manage to write several thousand words every week.

I'm 53K words into Sulan 2, which is tentatively entitled The Dome. This is my third draft and the first one that doesn't feel like a complete gut job. Yay! With any luck I'll have this draft wrapped up before the end of the year. I was hoping this novel would clock in somewhere between 55K - 60K words, although it appears it will probably be closer to 80K before I finish.

I've also had the privilege to critique several novels for friends of mine during the past few weeks. It's always fun to share the creative journey with my fellow writing buddies. Critiquing always brings a new awareness to my own writing and helps to keep me sharp. And what's more fun than talking about characters and story plots with friends? It's the stuff that keeps my soul warm.

Hope everyone out there in the blog world is well and enjoying journeys into books and writing.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Writer's View - Blown Circuit by Lars Guinard



BLOWNCIRCUT


Lethal Circuit (Circuit Series #2) by Lars Guignard and narrated by Russell Jonas
Genre: 16+ Spy/Techno Thriller
Audiobookblown circuit_RGB_2

Available Audio from Audible.com 
About the Book:
Michael Chase is back.WARNING: Blown Circuit, the eagerly anticipated sequel to the #1 spy thriller, Lethal Circuit, is here. If you don't like turbo-charged action adventure, then you'd better find some place to hide.
But now he has enemies. Deadly enemies.

Good thing Michael is in no mood to play nice.
Michael survived China. Barely. But now he's got bigger problems. A pair of coordinates broadcast on an obscure frequency have brought Michael to Istanbul, Turkey where credible chatter has emerged that a terrorist group plans to use a devastating device to hold the world hostage.
Designed by Nikola Tesla, arguably the greatest inventor of the Twentieth Century, the device is experimental, it is capable, and it has been missing for almost sixty years.
If Michael is to prevent a catastrophe, he'll need to get to the device before the Conspiracy or risk upsetting the global balance of power forever. Of course, finding the Tesla Device is one thing, knowing whom he can trust with it is another matter entirely.
To survive, he'll have to do both. If he doesn't, what started as a bad day is about to become a disaster.
Can Michael fight his way through the lies and deception to save the world?
If you can't get enough of the action of Lee Child and Vince Flynn, the intrigue of Robert Ludlum, and the adventure of Clive Cussler and James Rollins, you are going to LOVE Blown Circuit!

 Book can be found at:

 Audible |  iTunes | Amazon  | GoodReads


About the Author:
Lars Guignard is a former film and television writer and a graduate of both McGill University and the American Film Institute in Los Angeles. His debut thriller novel, Lethal Circuit, has been

an amazon top 100 Technothriller since its release.

Guignard has wanted to write Indian stories for kids ever since he attended a boarding school in the majestic Himalayas. The time he spent in the “school above the clouds” affected him

profoundly, and once he returned home to North America he was struck by the lack of children’s stories from India available in our culture. Since India is such an incredible country, he decided

to write a series of action adventure books for young adults about India to introduce young readers to this magical, mystical land. So if you’re looking for a great book adventure for kids, try Ghost Leopard today!

Author Sites:
Website | Twitter | Facebook 


About the Narrator:
Headshot_Russell Jonas_Legit_01.09.2011 (1)Russell Jonas is thrilled to make his audiobook narrator debut with “Blown Circuit.”  Russell has worked in commercial voice over and television since 1999 and has appeared in forty stage plays in New York City and in 46 states, including the Tony Award-winning Shakespeare Theatre Company. Russell teaches The Art of Acting at Southern Methodist University.


Giveaway:

2 audiobooks of Blown Circuit (INT- wherever audible.com is accessible)
a Rafflecopter giveaway

The Writer's View

Disclaimer: Due to some medical issues with a close family member, I was unfortunately unable to finish this novel before the blog tour. This review will be based on first 1/3 of the novel. My apologies to the author and narrator that I was unable to give a complete review at this time!

This novel falls outside of my usual genre, but when Candace recommended the first novel in the series, Lethal Circuit, I quickly found myself hooked by the high-octane action spy thriller.

The next novel in the series, Blown Circuit, continues in the same adrenaline-fueled pace.

Action Sequences

The strongest aspect of this book is the action scenes. They ROCK. As I was listening, I felt like I was in a movie theater watching a Jason Statham or Bruce Willis movie. I love action movies, and I love good action scenes in a novel. Each fight scene in this book is jam-packed with details that make you feel like you're in the scene, not just a spectator watching from the side lines. Hands down one of the best features of this book.

Exotic Locale

When I read, I love experiencing a new environment. The first novel in this series transported me to China. This novel took me to Turkey, a place I've always dreamed of going. I loved experiencing all the minute details of Turkey, which Guinard weaves expertly into every scene. After the action scenes, setting is the strongest feature of this novel. Readers should prepare to be transported!

Too Much Action

While I admire the amazing action scenes Guinard crafts, for me this novel was a bit too heavy on plot/action without the balance of character. I felt like I was being slingshot from one high-octane scene to another. Michael, the main character, is totally likeable, but other than his quest to find his father there isn't much going on in this book in the way of characterization. I like a novel with a bit more character study, but this is just personal taste.

Overall this is a well-crafted action book that I think will please fans of the genre.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Writer's Report - Sulan, Episode 2

I am happy to report that after scrapping the entire first draft of Sulan, Episode 2, I finally have a completely new and revised first draft! There is something amazing about completing a first draft. Like getting to the top of a really steep hill after miles and miles of running. I just printed it out last night and plan to spend the next few months frantically editing and re-writing, which are my favorite parts of writing. With any luck this book will be ready to go before the end of the year!

Monday, March 3, 2014

New Releases - Writer's Toolbox


My latest release in the Writer's Toolbox Series! It's up on Amazon for $1.49 and free on Amazon Prime!

Description: What makes readers stay up into the wee hours of the night, eyes glued to the pages of a novel? The answer can be summed up in one word: tension. Tension is vital to any successful story. So just how do you infuse your novel with tension?

This article contains specific techniques to help maximize the tension in your science fiction or fantasy story. Each technique is illustrated with examples. Learn how to keep readers glued to the pages of your novel!


Also just released this month -- the print version of World Integration! This article has  been selling so well that I decided to make it available in print. You can grab it on Amazon for $5.58 -- and if you buy the print version, you get the ebook for free! (Thank you Kindle Matchbook!)

Description: World Integration tackles the tricky task of incorporating worldbuilding details into a science fiction or fantasy novel. This can present an interesting dilemma for genre writers. How can information on a fictional world be delivered to readers in a way that is natural to the story line? How can important details be shared without bogging down readers in pages and pages of boring exposition? This is where World Integration will help. Writers will learn valuable techniques for weaving worldbuilding into a genre story, as well as the pros and cons of each technique. All methods are accompanied with examples from published works. This book is for all science-fiction and fantasy writers looking to improve and enhance worldbuilding in their novels.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

The Warrior & The Flower - Blog Tour Recap, Day 5

That's a wrap! Here ends The Warrior & The Flower blog tour. Thanks to the amazing Candace at CBB Book Promotions for a wonderful tour!




Mythical Books says: "Did you love the childhood tales? What about the ones from Far East? I cannot believe you didn’t, and I’m sure that the Asian ones have caught you at least due to the mystical and exotic that surrounded them. Camille Picott succeeds in her novel The Warrior & The Flower to make you dream again as you once did." Read the full review here.




J.A. Garland at Where Fantasy Becomes Reality says: "Yep, I was going to listen to this book on my morning trail runs. This was a safe plan because even if I didn’t like the book, I’d still get exercise, which for me, always equals a win.


The next morning I headed out, jacked up on coffee, ready to pound the trails and listen to a motivating book. Car parked, audio book rolling, I began my usual run.

“Hey, J.A., did you injure yourself?” asked another regular on the trail as he zoomed by me. 
What the heck was he talking about? Then I understood. So captivated by the story and all its intricacies, in order to really listen, I had started walking, and I hadn’t even realized it."

This review particularly tickled me since I'm an avid trail runner myself, and I always train while listening to audio books! Read the full review here.


Mad Steam says: "My oh my. This was such an unexpectedly wonderful delight. My ears were so very much happy from the first moment the audio started, for the Mad Scientist loves audiobooks read by men. A males voice can just be soothing." Read the full review here.

Ryan at Book Marks the Spot says: "Well, this book simply blew me away. I was not expecting to love it as much as I did. I adore fantasy as a rule. My favorite books ever are from the fantasy genre, so I was definitely excited about the aspect of the book and I am excited to say it definitely delivered." Read the full review here.

Dalene's Book Reviews says: "First, I would like to thank the author Camille Picott for giving me this book for an honest review. I enjoyed reading this story, the characters are well developed, the main two characters are very believable, and I couldn't help but love them." Read the full review here.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

The Warrior & The Flower - Blog Tour Recap, Day 4

Wolfie at Writer Person says: "Can I just say this is awesome and leave it at that? No? You want reasons? You want to know why I loved this book? All right, you asked for it." Read the full review here.

Joana at Alwaysjoart posted an excerpt of The Warrior & The Flower, which you can read here.

WS Momma Readers Nook says: "I really enjoyed listening to this book and think the author did a fantastic job of portraying the characters and bringing the story to life for the reader :) And Al Kessel did an awesome job with his voice inflections for each character. It made me laugh, made me cry and had me on the edge of my seat many times! That is exactly what a good book should be :) Definitely recommend it!" Read the full review here.

Girl of 1000 Wonders hosts me for an interview -- you can read it here!

Angel at Spare Reads says: "The Warrior & The Flower is an Asian inspired adult high fantasy novel written by Camille Picott. Being a Chinese native myself, I jumped at the opportunity to review it. It is not often that I encounter books mixed with Asian elements. The few times when I do, the references are either incorrect or inaccurate. Thus, I was both thrilled and anxious (just a little) when I picked up this book. Fortunately to my surprise, The Warrior & The Flower proved to be quite a delightful read with realistic traces of Asian traditions and I owe many thanks to both Camille and Candace :)" Read the full review here.

Fidah at Met In Eleven says: "Something about audiobooks just brings so much more liveliness to a book. I was hesitant when I heard the sample but the narrator's voice grew on me really quickly. The way the story was narrated made me appreciate the world that Camille Picott has created and experience it to it's full potential. She has created a breathtaking fantasy world. From the scenery to the creatures to the magic to the characters. Everything was detailed without having to use difficult words to complicate and confuse the reader. Camille Picott has written a beautiful story with lovable characters." Read the full review here.

Friday, January 31, 2014

The Warrior & The Flower - Blog Tour Recap, Day 3

Marlene Harris at Reading Reality says: "There obviously isn’t enough Asian-inspired fantasy, because The Warrior & The Flower is not just a captivating epic fantasy, but everything feels fresh and new because of the setting. So if you enjoy epic fantasy but are starting to feel like everything is a bit too similar, try The Warrior & The Flower.

So what do we have? The story feels like a classic; the warrior with nothing left to live for finds new hope and purpose by adopting a child. But it’s so much more than that." Read the complete review here.

Deejay at DJ's Corner says: "Never expected to like this book as much as I did. I mean, wow! I was taken by complete surprise!

This is my first Asian-influenced high fantasy and will probably be the only one I ever read for fear that someone might ruin the feels for me. When I signed up to review this book, I was sure it was going to be a three star like so many tour books I receive. I was so so wrong! This book was wonderful from start to finish, and can I just say it now, hilarious!" Read the full review here.

Girl of 1000 Wonders says: "This book is filled with adventure, excitement, humor and heart. It is a phenomenal read, and I will definitely pick up Picott’s next installment in the 3 Kingdoms series to see where the rest of the adventure take Yi an Tulip." Read the full review here.

Curling Up With A Good Book posted an interview with me here.

And Candace at Candace's Book Blog (the amazing woman who organized this blog tour!) posted an interview here about my experiences of being an indie author.