Tuesday, 12 September 2017

HORROR AUTHORS BLOG HOP SIGN UP.

THE ANUAL OCTOBER FRIGHTS BLOG HOP SIGN UP IS HERE



For those who have followed this blog over the years, you'll know that every year at this time of the year, I sign up to the October Frights Blog Hop. It is something I have done for many many years and every time it comes around again, it fills me with a genuine joy.

I have known this horror crowd for years and I love the hop as it's a chance for me to catch up with the work they have done over the year, any releases I may have missed, and to generally hang out with folks I have an affection for.

This year October Frights starts on the 10th of October and ends on the 15th. In that time, there are a whole host of posts from short stories, to extracts, to poems, to articles, to giveaways, fun games and competitions. It's an old school hop and that's what I really love about it.

FELLOW AUTHORS OF HORROR - if you would like to join in the October Frights Blog Hop then please head over to the sign up page here

Inlinkz
Signup Has Begun!
I believe participants will have to join the site to use the signup, but they don’t bite.
You can find the Inlinkz site here: http://www.inlinkz.com/new/
Where to find the signup form:
Or: http://www.inlinkz.com/new/view.php?id=735017

YOU CAN ALSO JOIN UP by adding yourself to this LINKZ list

Tuesday, 5 September 2017

The Crow Man Chapter One. Exclusive Pre-Release viewing.

The Crow Man, my adult horror novel, comes out on October 3rd 2017. 5 Years in the writing, it has been a labour of love and torment. It is currently available for pre-order on Amazon.

It can be pre-ordered on Amazon
UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B0758JMKZ1
US: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0758JMKZ1

In the meantime, if you're curious about this project, here is the blurb and the first part of Chapter One.

BLURB


When your worst fear is your own mind.
Grace Waters lost a baby and now stands amidst the ruins of her marriage. Trapped within the loneliness of grief, her perfect and beautiful life as a GP’s wife begins to quickly unravel around her. With her husband increasingly concerned about her state of mind, she begins to doubt her own sanity – especially when she begins to see the terrifying figure of The Crow Man.

Referred to psychiatrist, Doctor Daniel Rose, Grace dares to hope for healing and recovery, but what she finds is an unending nightmare in which those pretending to be the voice of reason are the most dangerously insane of them all. 

Doctor Rose believes he has found the cure for insanity, for fixing the broken. And in his noble and ambitious mind, it doesn't matter that the methods are barbaric because the result is something perfect. 

A terrifying Frankenstein of the psychological age. An exploration into the dark recesses of the human mind and the terrifying psychological experimentations of the 1950s.

Readers' Note:
This is a horror novel with strong themes of female disempowerment and empowerment. It contains scenes that are violent and sinister. Some readers may find these distressing and triggering. It is recommended 18+ reading. 



1.

It was the kind of hour, in the kind of day, where the sky bled grey into the ground. The mist circled the base of the tree trunks. The grasses of the fields beyond the garden, looked like shards of cruel glass spiking the earth. From behind her, Grace heard the ticking of the kitchen clock. It was a heavy sound for a heavy time of year. Aside from this, the house appeared silent, although she knew it was only a trick of distance. Two stories up, the twins were playing in the attic playroom. It would be far from quiet there.

She paid little attention to the dishes she was washing in the sink. She was too busy staring out onto the grey swirling light. It reminded her of her marriage. The bare trees like the skeletal bones of affection she now held for her husband. She sighed heavily and broke her stare away from the distant fields to take the tumbler of gin and tonic from the worktop. She allowed herself ‘just the one’ at lunch time, although the measures had been getting more generous of late.

By the time her eyes travelled back to the space beyond the garden, the figure was there, standing ominously under the ancient oak tree. The glass slipped from her hand, either from shock, or from the soap suds on her hand. Her chest heaved. She blinked, hoping the sight of the freakish figure was nothing more than a figment of her imagination.

He still stood there.

Instinctively, she glanced towards the back door, praying it was locked. She wasn't sure she'd make it in time if it wasn't. There was a supernatural quality to the figure that made her think all efforts to out-run him would be futile.

The figure was a tall man, dressed in a well-tailored suit. Even though he was far away, she could see the cut of the suit was well tailored – sharp and expensive. The kind her husband, Doctor Paul Waters, wore. The figure was neither tall nor short. Neither fat nor thin. He was entirely non-descript; except for his head, which was covered by an old hessian sack, tied at the neck by a piece of worsted thread. Eye-holes had been cut crudely into it, giving the impression of two gapping mouths instead of eyes. The contrast between the rough-cut sack and the suit was startling. Fear beat hard wings in Grace’s chest and she thought for a moment that she might faint.

“Muuuum,” James called as he ran towards her, “I'm hungry!”

Momentarily, she turned, automatically responding, “Just a minute, sweetie.” By the time she looked back towards the monster in the garden, it was gone. Instinct told her that just because she couldn't see him, it didn't mean he wasn't there. Her breath was ragged and sharp in her throat.

He was hiding. Amongst the shadows. In the folds of the mist. Watching.

She wiped a stray piece of her straight, greying-blonde hair from her forehead with the back of her hand. She'd like to cry but her husband had told her it was damaging for the children to see her in an emotional state. Crying was poor form.

She retrieved the pieces of crystal tumbler from the bowl of washing-up water, half-hoping a glass slither might find its way onto her husband's dinner plate, and then his stomach. It was an unusually horrid thought for such a gentle woman. She'd been brought up to believe gentility was a strength, but there were a lot of things about her up-bringing she had started to question. The bin-lid clanged unnaturally loudly in the otherwise quiet house.

Satisfied the tumbler had only cracked into three, she drained the bowl and wiped her hands on her wool A-line skirt. She'd chosen it to go with the beige cashmere roll-neck her husband had brought her for Christmas. She hated it, it reminded her of his mother. Wearing it was a silent act of revenge against him.

“Do you want me to make you some toast?” she asked James, who was hopping from foot to foot with excited energy.

“Yes, please. Can I have jam?”

She smiled and ruffled his hair. “Yes, you can have jam,” she said bending over and whispering conspiratorially. “Just don't tell daddy. You know how he disapproves of sweet things. Does your brother want some?”

James shrugged as if the needs of his brother were the furthest care from his mind. As she watched James run around the kitchen doing an impression of a fighter plane, she smiled, suddenly feeling very foolish she should have let her imagination get the better of her.

At this time of year, the isolated landscape joined hands with the eerie weather and made her prone to flights of fancy. She had always had a vivid imagination. In another life, she might have been an artist. But art was too messy for their perfect existence; too full of feelings and chaos.

When they had moved into the Old Vicarage, she had sworn the house was haunted. An idea Paul had told her was, “Quite ludicrous.” Of course, he had been right. He was always right, she thought bitterly. The spooky banging and clattering had been the antiquated hot water system. The cold draughts of air on the stairs, the fault of a loose window latch. The sound of a baby crying in the night ... her grief at having lost her infant daughter. Never their grief, but hers.

A botched job of the after-care ensured there was no hope of Grace Waters ever having a daughter. The knowledge was like a constant blade in her heart, which dug a little deeper each time she walked. 

She busied herself making toast for her two blond-haired, blue-eyed boys. They were handsome and wholesome. Peas in a pod. Even she had difficulty telling them apart, and they constantly took great delight in playing tricks on their relatives, swapping jumpers and names. From the day they were born, they had been happy children. Grace knew she was blessed, and she knew she should be more grateful for what she had. But sometimes, the human heart doesn’t understand that as it should.

Grace opened the state-of-the-art refrigerator, (a Christmas gift from Paul) and pulled out the home-made jam. Her mother-in-law, Millicent, continually scorned this 'modern' approach to food storage, and the last time she had visited, there had almost been blood-shed over Millicent's precious jam being held prisoner by such a wicked contraption. The memory of it made Grace smile. Millicent was a total bitch but at least she made decent jam.

Catching the toast just in time before it welded itself to the AGA, she proceeded to spread butter and jam like the automaton mother she had become. George, the eldest by five minutes, came galloping into the kitchen on the back of his hobby horse and Grace startled. He was wearing a pillow case as an impromptu helmet, and looked unnervingly reminiscent of the figure she'd conjured in her mind just quarter of an hour before. She pushed the haunted feeling aside and cheerily handed out the plates of hot buttery, jammy toast. The smell of it was enticing. It would be easy enough to make another couple of slices, but instead, she reached for her silver cigarette case and lit one of the French menthol cigarettes. Paul Waters hated overweight women in a way only a true chauvinist pig could.

Grace watched her boys eat and bicker, and play games they didn't think she could see. She smoked the cigarette and crushed the tip into the heavy glass ash-tray. She looked at the clock. It was four o'clock in the afternoon. It was a long time until bed – longer still until Paul would arrive home after a day at the surgery. She ought to start preparing his dinner. She ought to hoover the rug in the hallway, and refresh the vase of flowers, but increasingly, these things didn’t seem to matter, especially as Paul often arrived late and too drink-soft to notice such details. 

Grace put it down to the stresses of being a GP. People now waited until the evening before calling for the doctor. It was a sign of the times. Or at least this was what Grace reasoned in order to stop the wild and dangerous allegations of him possibly having an affair.

She knew in her heart that he was; but she wasn't going to admit it. What would be the point? She could hardly leave him. She had nowhere to go. She owned nothing. It was all his. She had no home to return to. As Paul often reminded her, he had dragged her from some dump of an industrial town and made her into, “The lady you are today. A woman fit to be a doctor's wife.”

He had given her a clothes allowance, furnished their home with solid wood furniture, and all the latest technology. She wore enough diamonds to remind her of his respect for her as the mother of his children (although he failed to mention the word, “love”) and he allowed her to pursue her own hobbies, as long as they didn't interfere in the smooth running of the household or make a mess.

'Yes, I am truly blessed,' she said sharply inside her head.

The boys requested their leave from the table with mouths still stuffed with toast and jam. She smiled and waved them away, hoping she might get at least a half-hour nap on the settee before one of them tried to grievously harm the other. If she could get some rest, she might be able to face the horror of the bath and bedtime routine without the need for another stiff gin.

She walked over to the sink and slipped the plates into the water. Part of her was curious to look back over the garden towards the grey space of fantasy where her mind had conjured such a terrifying figure, and part of her feared the monster might still be standing there.

The grey had inked to a darker light, making it impossible to make reality out from the distant shadows. Her view was further distorted by the emerging reflection in the window of a once very beautiful woman who, over the course of six cruel months, had morphed into the very mask of sorrow.

“Something needs to change,” she whispered. “Or else I'll go mad.”

*

Tuesday, 13 June 2017

A Wattpad Reader & Me Project.

I want to keep my writing fun, positive and interactive. 

As is my nature, I want to push against the tide of broadcast authoring and writing in order to chase the $$ and I want to write because I LOVE writing. 



This is why I'm about to invest huge amounts of time and fun into a Reader & Me project. I'm wanting to get back to the days of growing meaningful, joyful relationships between our entwining stories.

Next week sees the launch of my Wattpad project 'Hotel Palmera'. This is how it's going to work.

I will post 3 short chapters establishing world and premise. They will be released one a day. At the end of those chapters you will be asked a series of questions as to which direction the next chapter takes.

Think those choose your own adventure books when you were a kid.

It's an iPhone project. Spontaneous. Flash fiction (there may be type errors lol) - it's going to run until it ends.

Here's the premise:

On the beautiful, remote island of Comino off the coast of Malta is a luxury hotel. Not quite as many tourists leave as arrive. But what mysteries does the hotel conceal? What dark characters roam its corridors? And what exactly goes on on the 13th floor? Is the Hotel Palmera a place where romance can flourish, where dreams come true, where nightmares manifest?

What happens? You decide.

The MC narrative voice is 22 year old Natasha Klein. Recently split from her boyfriend and embarking on a gap year funded by inheritance.
Who will she meet? You decide.

Sounds fun right? A great way to spend five minutes of your daily social media time?

More details and official launch announcement later this week.
Here is my Wattpad handle. I'll see you there. Fire up your imaginations, it's going to be an epic ride. http://my.w.tt/UiNb/Zs94CVkmWD

Thursday, 8 June 2017

FEAR OF FLYING. What it taught me about my author journey.

The fear of flying is a common fear, but when you're the one with the fear, you can't imagine how anybody else can possibly feel as bad about it. You truly believe the world is spinning around you, there's no way out. The constricting chest, the heat, the sickness, the general feeling that everything is just not right. 

This was me three years ago. I hadn't been on a plane in over ten years because, well, if you pretend you don't need to fly then you don't have to face the fear, right? Yep, easier to stay home, keep safe, not look at those crazy metal birds flying up there in the clouds, pretend they don't even exist, because, well... who wants to jet off to far flung exotic, exciting places anyway? 

It's a bit like this with our creative ambitions. I've spent a lot of time listening to people over these last three years and I became to see some parallels with my fear of flying  and their fear of starting their creative journey, and in turn, mine. 

How did I tackle my fear of flying? I got on a plane - and then I got on a plane again, and again, and I keep getting on planes. Now, I'm not saying I'm completely cured, there are moments where I will get hit by a literal wave of panic. The slightest hint of turbulence can set about those old stress responses - but I have developed the skills to recognise that panic for what it is and to wrestle it back in the box because it's not useful, it's not beneficial, and it's pointless. 

I didn't get on the plane alone. I had a best friend help me, and they continue to help me, sitting by my side, just being there. That's why community is important. It's a known that facing a fear with somebody else makes that fear a lot less monstrous. 

My experience of overcoming my fear of flying is a direct parallel to the creative journey that I have been undertaking in the last three years, too. There's no coincidence that I began to tackle my fear of flying at the same time I began my new life. 

You get on the plane, again and again and
again until you get used to it. After 10 years
of no flying I've flown to Prague, Nashville x2
Copenhagen x2, Barcelona, Malta, Glasgow.
I'm flying to Nashville again in a couple of
weeks and New York in September. 
I threw in the day job to pursue my creative life, but rather than being faced with a landscape of rainbows and unicorns, the whole landscape was full of monsters and big knives, and bear pits, and a million other terrifying fear walls; was my work good enough? Were my stories acceptable? Was I good enough? What will people think? 

The first thing I had to do was learn to call myself an author, and silence those chattering voices that told me I was an imposter, a fraud, a hobby writer, deluded... and like the plane situation, I did that by doing it over and over again. When people asked me what I did for a living, I told them 'I'm an author' - even though it sounded ludicrous in my mind. 

I then had to navigate all the fears that come with putting yourself out there, of daring to not conform, of daring to sell my work, my talent, my skill. It was all dares. None of it came easily - and it still doesn't, even though it is 'easier' 
- just like getting on a plane is still a dare to myself. 

Facing fears head on is no easier for one person that it is another. It's about choice. You choose to be afraid, and because it's a choice, you can choose not to be afraid. It's easy to delegate our fears to natural human behaviour and instincts, an instinctive response to threat - and of course that's where they start; biology is a powerful force. All those chemicals whirling around, all those physical responses that feel out of our control, but they're not entirely out of control and you can negotiate with them. 

How to negotiate with your physical fear. 
  • Close your eyes and breathe deeply. Force yourself to slow down. 
  • Tap your leg or your hand in rhythm, silently count the rhythm, so it overrides your thoughts. 
  • Envisage where you are going and think of the reasons you want to be there. 
  • Imagine all the beautiful things you are going to see when you arrive at your destination. 
  • Think of all the other people you know who are already up in the sky, flying happily away. 
  • Slowly open your eyes and challenge yourself to do small things that will establish a routine and a pattern (in the case of flying, order a drink, open a book) convince yourself that this is your new normal.
  • Take charge of your situation. Self care. Make a
    scary or unpleasant experience as nice as you can.
    Convince yourself that it is a different reality to what
    your fear is telling you. Role play out the character
    you really want to be in the narrative. Make your
    own reality. Choose how you want to view it.
    This is me on the plane - pretending everything is
    totally dandy. 
  • Accept that you are not always going to be in control, but there are people who are qualified and skilled who are in charge and they are going to look after you.
Now apply these to your creative ambitions that you're not facing because of the fears. 

  • Take time. Slow down. Make space for your project. 
  • Develop patterns and routines for your creative project which normalise it and make it an embedded part of your daily life. 
  • Envisage where you want to be in a year, two years, eventually and think about why you want to be there. Ensure that you do this often because these things change.
  • Get to know people who are already out there doing what you want, who inspire, encourage and support you, who demonstrate in their daily life that this is a norm and it can be your norm. 
  • Challenge yourself to do small things every day, constantly push against that comfort zone. Be conscious that that's what you're doing and be gentle with yourself but firm. 
  • Accept that you're not going to be able to do all of it yourself, outsource, hire professionals and trust they are going to look after you. 
Before you know it, you'll be on your umpteenth flight and wondering why you ever wasted so much negative energy worrying, why you stopped it from travelling to all the wonderful and exciting places. 

In two weeks time, I am flying solo to Nashville from London. Three years ago, I would never have thought that possible. I could never envisage me doing that - and now I am, just like three years ago, I never would have thought it possible that my new creative life could fund and enable that trip, or that the reason I would be going is as an author up for an award. 

What is it you want to do? What is it that's stopping you? What are your greatest fears about starting your creative path?





Tuesday, 6 June 2017

Writers' Block. What is it? How do I cure it?

Writers' Block... we'll it's a funny old thing isn't it? For some it's a complete blank space of ideas every time they go to sit down and write something. For others, it's a million ideas but somehow, there just isn't any inclination or determination to sit down and write them.
I literally have a drawer full of theses and still haven't
been able to sit down and 'properly' write for months.

Personally, it's the second form of writers' block that I suffer from. I have a notebook crammed with novel outlines (about 9 fun novels plotted) and yet, in over a year, I have managed to actually complete just one short novella for a publisher.

Not bad going, you might say. It's better than some folks - in fact, probably better than most - but the problem for me is, I'm a full time writer. Yeah, it's my actual job, and when writing is meant to fill every 9-5 and bring in a salary, then it's quite a pressure - Imagine the freak out I should be having about writers' block.

And make no mistakes, I am not lazy. In fact, most folks laughingly joke that I'm one of the busiest, self-disciplined creatives they know - no, lie. But.... still the overwhelming feelings of self-adequacy and self-doubt, of imposter syndrome crowd down when I acknowledge that I'm suffering, for whatever reason, the dreaded writers' block syndrome.

Actually, that last sentence is utter rubbish, I don't feel any anxiety about it at all, and that's what my post today is about.
Sometimes, just gathering up your
notes and ideas and putting them away
for a few days, allowing yourself the
freedom to do something else, can
be  a quick trigger. 

Those feelings of frustration, inadequacy, self-doubt, imposter syndrome, anger, disappointment are all what we are taught to feel in traditional production society. We are taught from day one that the 'AMOUNT' of work is almost secondary to the QUALITY of the work, and goodness forbid anybody ever suggested in the traditional production / capitalist society that you actually got pleasure, fulfilment, soul-enriching experiences from what you were producing.

Increasingly, in the indie authoring scene, there is a production line ethos. If I get offered one more freaking course on 'How to Write For Market' or 'How to Increase Your Productivity' or 'Write a Gazillion Books to Make a 6 Figure Income' then I might just.... well, I don't know what but it would be something notable.

Now, let me make it clear right here and right now that if that works for you - if you are naturally incredibly prolific and, or you love the challenge of writing for market, then good for you. You are a rockstar and I love that you're happy and fulfilled. Seriously, I have some super good friends who are just amazing at sitting down and writing everyday and getting beautiful stories out into the world, every one of them bloody brilliant - This article is NOT about bashing folks for writing quickly or prolifically. There are people who can write quickly, copiously and it still be fabulous quality. No, this article is about NOT feeling bad if you're not doing that.

It's taken me some real reflection time on this matter. Those of you who follow this blog know that this topic rears its head a little every now and then. But finally, I feel I am in a happy place.

This years key focus word for me was TEND, which admittedly, a lot of folks in my sisterhood didn't quite get when I said it, but now, 6 months in, they do because they are seeing the results of it.

There's an old saying that sometimes, you have to go backwards to go forwards. That's me. I spent the last six months going backwards, and now, I'm ready to move forwards on the right path, in the right way - in a way that makes me... *gasp* HAPPY.

I have learned the most important thing for me as a writer / author is NOT FREAKING OUT when a week, a month, hell, even three months (*coughs and side-eyes* six months) have gone by and I haven't actually written anything.

Times like these are feeding your creativity.
Learn to embrace the times you think
you're doing nothing when actually
your Creativity is playing and learning hard.
The reason I don't freak out is because I KNOW with certainty (now) that the time I'm not physically writing is a time when something truly magical is happening. And I've learned to trust that.

Creativity isn't always an outward expression, the creation of 'something'. Creativity is often a thought process, a conscious journeying inward. It doesn't need to be helicopter parented. It's absolutely fine and dandy all by itself. It doesn't need you to navel gaze and wonder 'What is my Creativity doing today?', 'Let me set some goals for my Creativity', 'Let me bullet journal my Creative's To Do List'.

Creativity is your inner child. It's perfectly content playing imaginary games and role play all by itself, it doesn't need you to come along with your big scary notebook and your good intentions and start stamping on its parade, trying to organise it into some kind of narrative, and plot.

LEAVE THE POOR CHILD ALONE. Like all children, it will come home of its own accord when its hungry. That's when you sit it down at a table and ask it about its day. That's when you make notes and take an interest in its story.

I've learned to take my hands off the neck of my creativity. I've learned that my creativity LOVES adventure and new things, so I make sure that I do as much as that as possible. I travel, I explore, I take wonder in the world - the exotic and the everyday. Instagram has become the travel journal of my Creativity. You should head there and see the adventures that we have. Me and my Creativity love hanging out together, now I've stopped making demands on it.

However, my Creativity has expensive tastes, travel, experiences, indulgences don't come cheap, so like any good parent, I have to find a way of funding its needs, which is why I no longer consider myself a full time writer, but a part time writer and part time other something or other job title; editor, publisher, event planner. I work to feed my creativity - oh, and my real children ;)

Yes, it's not all the Facebook and Instagram face - there's a lot of hard work and slog, and late nights and long days behind it all to ensure my life, house, kids are in order, like the other 99% of the world, I work hard and long.
Go exploring. This place is just 8 miles away from our
suburban London home. See the world through the lens
of a camera. Not only does this help your Creativity
secure the image but you can also print out your pics
and stick them in scrap books for future projects. 

And the beauty of the day job is that it gives you healthy time apart. Like any relationship, a period of separation is a good thing; strengthens appreciation, care and love. Never begrudge your day job - unless you really hate it (which I came to the point of) and then in that instance, get a different one. Seriously, get an exit plan - a 1 year, 3 year, 5 year plan, but get one.

WHAT TO DO.


  • RELAX -- recharge. 
  • PLAY -- have fun. Do silly things. Fall in love again. Date your spouse. Play with your kids. 
  • TRAVEL -- even if it's down a road in your neighbourhood you've never been to, or a cafe you've never had a coffee in, a bus route you've never taken. Pretend you're an alien and it's all new to you.
  • EXPLORE -- especially in places / situations that are familiar to you. 
  • WORK -- distract yourself, pull an extra shift knowing that money is for one of the above. 
  • EDUCATE -- take a course - it might be part of your job exit plan;) 
  • FIND A NEW HOBBY -- it might become your future day job, it might introduce you to a whole new friendship (character) circle. 
WHAT NOT TO DO

  • Freak out
  • Get grumpy
  • Get angry
  • Chase down your creativity into submission
  • Get lazy and disaffected

Good luck everybody. Live your stories! (unless like me you write some horror, and then that wouldn't be a nice thing at all... )

Thanks for stopping by. Please, please share your tips about overcoming Writers' Block in the comment box below. Let's start a conversation.


Monday, 5 June 2017

A Romeo & Juliet for our Times

I am Delighted to share with you the next chapter in the story of my stand alone Upper YA Contemporary Romance novel, 'I Defy You, Stars'

It has been enrolled in Kindle Unlimited and to celebrate, it has a whole new look.


This Romeo  and  Juliet Contemporary Romance is the perfect read for the summer season. A story of love, tragedy and hope, it promises you all the feels.

You can get your Kindle Unlimited FREE copy or your $2.99 copy here at Amazon
UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01GKEP0WM
USA https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01GKEP0WM

Here's the latest review in
 5 STARS "A gritty retelling of Shakespeare's Romeo & Juliet. Katie John has her finger on the pulse of London's youth and weaves a beautiful tale of art, love, family and betrayal, showing us how Shakespeare's classic tragedy is timeless. I couldn't put it down."

Here's a little more about it.

A Romeo and Juliet tale for our times. A bitter-sweet, romantic tragedy for fans of John Green, Rainbow Rowell, and E. Lockhart. A story of broken families, bullying, street art, social anarchy, poetry, and Shakespeare. 

What would you do if were accused of trying to murder your best friend? 

For sixteen-year-old Juliet, all the certainties of the world collapse when she is accused of murdering her best friend. For as long as Juliet can remember, Amber has been in her life; the sister she never had, the only friend she could truly trust – but with Amber’s accident comes a devastating revelation, which might just be motive enough for Juliet to want Amber dead. 

With her family and college life breaking down around her, Juliet turns to Rafe; the boy she met at a party just a few weeks ago. Together, they brave the turbulence of the encroaching adult world, finding love amongst the broken pieces of their lives. 

However, the cruel twists and turns of fate, soon call time on their budding romance, forcing both of them to make decisions they’ll come to regret. 

“Get the tissues ready, I guarantee this novel will punch you in the gut and make you cry.”

“The lives of Juliet and Rafe are like an unfolding car crash, which you just can’t pull your eyes away from.”

“Woven throughout all the sadness, there is this ribbon of hope that keeps you reading through the night.”






Tuesday, 30 May 2017

Summer Scavenger Hunt Check Point

Hello, happy summer time! May it be filled with lazy garden reading days and lots of adventures. This is the official Check Point post for the Alliance of Young Adult Authors Summer Scavenger Hunt. You will find your Special Key Word towards the end of this post. 

If you're here it's because you've already swept by my website www.katiemjohn.com and picked up this link - so you probably have a little bit of a taste about what I write - and you'll have noticed that I am a bit of a genre butterfly.

Well, I won't keep you long here, my friend, you have a lot of other check points to get through. If you're not sure what the heck all this Scavenger Hunt thing is about then you can find the original post HERE. 


WIN $25 AMAZON VOUCHER to spend on lots and lots of lovely YA Books. It's easy-pie, easy.

Head over to my special FB author and reader group, Fierce Wings (JOIN HERE) This is the group where I break all my author news, give behind the scenes #nofilter news, do special giveaways and offer ARC away before releases etc. I will select one person who has joined between 1st - 7th of June by randomly pulling their name out of my sunhat. You will be notified via the Facebook group page, so don't forget to flick the notifications to ALL so you don't miss the announcement.
and drop a join request.


CLAIM YOUR FREE COPY OF 'When Sorrows Come' at Instafreebie with this special Summer Scavenger Hunt link. 
https://www.instafreebie.com/free/UQdgu

Seventeen-year-old Ophelia is not only an artist, high-achiever and outcast, but she juggles her A-Levels and ambitions with being a young carer for her bi-polar mother. She is also in love with Malachi Stone: Mathematical Genius, Poet, Swimmer, and Narcissist.

Drawn together by their own self-destructive impulses and increasingly complex lives, they begin a consuming relationship of love and rejection.

"A poignant, heartbreaking tale of young people with old souls."


DON'T FORGET TO GATHER YOUR FREEBIES. 
Before you go, don't forget to stuff your kindle by picking up your freebie books:

WITCHCRAFT (Book 1 of The Meadowsweet Chronicles) 


Ever since its earliest days, the small English village of Heargton has been steeped in the occult. Tales of witchcraft and paranormal activity have been part of the local folklore for generations. Some people blame the lay lines that intersect at the very centre of the village, others blame a terrible curse. 

700 years on, Heargton Village still holds dark secrets, and when one of the village girls falls victim to a terrible ritual killing, the old superstitions resurface. 

At the heart of these whispers are the Meadowsweet sisters. All beautiful, all charming, all eccentric, but it is the middle daughter, seventeen-year-old Fox, who captures the imagination of American newcomer Jeremiah Chase; a deviant New York playboy sent to live with his Aunt in the Chase ancestral home of Coldstone Hall. A place that has its own grisly history. 

A tale of witchcraft, demons and ghosts, blending traditional English folklore with the American Gothic.

DOWNLOAD YOUR FREE COPY HERE  AMAZON US  AMAZON UK


THE FOREST OF ADVENTURES (Book 1 of The Knight Trilogy) 


****** An Amazon No.1 Best-selling Fairytale series ******

"5 Stars! An Awesome Young Adult Escapade!" The Kindle Book Review 

"Totally Captivating. A stunning series!" Amazon Review

Mina's life is nicely ordered, thank you very much. She has a clear handle or reality and a well plotted life plan. But when she finds herself unwillingly falling for the mysterious new boy at college, she discovers that sometimes destiny has a different design. 

With his seductive combination of mystery and handsome good looks, Blake proves an irresistible lure. And although being swept off of her feet by a knight on a white horse was not part of Mina's original plan, she finds herself increasingly enchanted by the world he inhabits. 

As terrible, heartbreaking events rock her daily world, Mina finds herself retreating deeper into a world she only thought existed in fairy-tales. But every fairy tale has its villain and on crossing paths with Morgan Le Fay, Mina realises that even in a fantasy world there is no guarantee of 'a happy ever after'. 

When you're deep in the woods, it's all too easy to get lost. 

DOWNLOAD YOUR FREE COPY HERE  Amazon UK   AMAZON US

GOODBYE and THANKS FOR STOPPING BY
Thank you so much for stopping by and taking the time to engage with me and my books. I really look forward to getting to know some more of you in the future, and I also hope that you love the worlds and characters I have created as much as I do.
YOUR SPECIAL KEY WORD IS :   FOREVER

Good luck with the rest of your treasure hunting. Here is a linked up list of all the other authors before and after me so you can carry on your hunt.



THE MAP (participating authors)

  1. Cindy Ray Hale
  2. Katherine Bogle
  3. Melle Amade
  4. David Kudler
  5. A.M. Yates
  6. Alethea Kontis
  7. Stevie Rae Causey
  8. Katlyn Duncan
  9. Debbie Manber Kupfer
  10. Meredith Rose
  11. N.M. Howell
  12. Lara Ann
  13. K.M. Robinson
  14. J.A. Culican
  15. Heather Karn
  16. Rob L. Slater
  17. Dylan Keefer
  18. Sarah K. Wilson
  19. L.J. Higgins
  20. Gina Marie Long
  21. Em Kazmierski
  22. Travis Hall
  23. Heather Young-Nichols
  24. Anna Santos
  25. J.L. Weil
  26. Jo Schneider
  27. Logan Keys
  28. Kristin D. Van Risseghem
  29. Martine Lewis
  30. Tara Benham
  31. Stacy Claflin
  32. Beth Hammond
  33. Erica Cope
  34. Nicole Zoltack
  35. Char Webster
  36. Sabrina Ramoth
  37. T.J. Muir
  38. Raquel Lyon
  39. Beth Rodgers
  40. S.L. Beaumont
  41. Eva Pohler
  42. Melanie McFarlane
  43. Cheryllynn Dyess
  44. Audrey Rich
  45. Amanda Zieba
  46. Sandie Will
  47. Elle Scott
  48. Robert Jones
  49. Ashley Maker
  50. Mandy Peterson
  51. Audrey Grey
  52. Chanda Stafford
  53. Amy McNulty
  54. Melinda Cordell
  55. Monica Leonelle
  56. Claire Luana
  57. Frost Kay
  58. Preeti C. Sharma
  59. Ginna Moran
  60. Mackenzie Flohr
  61. Lena Mae Hill
  62. Angel Leya
  63. Wendi Wilson
  64. Wendy Knight
  65. Samantha Britt
  66. Tamara Hart Heiner
  67. Norma Hinkens
  68. Patti Larsen
  69. Megan Crewe
  70. Jamie Thornton
  71. Jessie Renée
  72. T.A. Maclagan
  73. Lydia Sherrer
  74. Edward Cullen Sucks or K.T. Webb (alternate)
  75. P.D. Workman
  76. J.A. Armitage
  77. K.N. Lee
  78. Angela Fristoe
  79. Rhonda Sermon
  80. G.K. DeRosa
  81. Erin Richards
  82. Ali Winters
  83. Larissa C. Hardesty
  84. Kristine Tate
  85. Debra Kristi
  86. Keira Gillet or Bella Rose (alternate)
  87. Cortney Pearson
  88. Jeff Kohanek
  89. Kristal Shaff
  90. Rachel Morgan
  91. Arwen Paris or Emma Right (alternate)
  92. C.L. Cannon
  93. Joanne Macgregor
  94. Lindsey Loucks
  95. Farah Cook
  96. A.L. Knorr or Erin Hayes (alternate)
  97. Jesikah Sundin
  98. Dorothy Dreyer
  99. Danielle Annett
  100. C.J. Ethington
  101. L.C. Hibbett
  102. Madeline Dyer
  103. Katie John
  104. Nicole Schubert
  105. Rachel Medhurst
  106. Tee G Ayer
  107. May Freighter
  108. Gwynn White
  109. Jen Minkman
  110. J.L. Gillham
  111. Karen Tomlinson
  112. Kate Haye
  113. Megan Linski
  114. Martina Billings
  115. Jo Ho
  116. Imlovingbooks.com or Kellie Sheridan
  117. Inna Hardison
  118. Rachel Bateman
  119. Sally Henson
  120. J.L. Hendricks
  121. Bookfetti
  122. T.M. Franklin
  123. Raven Oak
  124. Stephany Wallace or Felisha Antonette (alternate)
  125. Jake Devlin
  126. S.F. Benson
  127. Laurie Treacy
  128. Emily Martha Sorensen
  129. Leia Stone
  130. T. Rae Mitchell
  131. J. Keller Ford
  132. Kat Stiles
  133. Jessica Hawke
  134. Elyse Reyes
  135. Sophie Davis
  136. Lindsay Mead or Bianca Scardoni (alternate)
  137. Jenetta Penner
  138. David R. Bernstein
  139. Olivia Wildenstein
  140. Derek Murphy