So lot’s of exciting changes going on for me. One is that I launched my website,

So please I hope you will join me there. I have transferred all my blog posts over, so you won’t lose out on any great writing tips or interviews. Also I have started a Discord as a resource for writers and artists. It is for networking and for support and is called Creative Cats and Dogs Hijinks. It’s a bit of a silly name me and a friend came up with, but it’s a great community we have and are trying to build. So if you need someone to brainstorm with or do sprints with, join at this link

Also, I started a new show, In Progress, hosted by Go Indie Now. Check it out on the first Monday of the month at 8 PM EST.

Hope to see you all around!


New Site and Other Announcements!

So I have decided completely on a whim to do what everyone has been telling me to do for years. I made a website. And it’s fancy pants haha. Not really, but it does look nice. To me the best design is clean design so I hope you will like what you see when you check it out. I will be writing new blog posts there and have imported these old posts from here as well, so everything will be in one convenient spot. I plan on trying a bit more with the blog again. Maybe it’s a new me. Probably not, but I feel semi motivated at least to chat with you a little more and share knowledge. It’s not that I haven’t wanted to, I just felt I ran out of topics. So I will do my best going forward on the new site. So without further ado, here’s the new site!!

Please check out my new site and let me know what you think. For now I have services available. For now. Also check me out on social media @hijinkswriter!

Thanks, and have a great day!


Talks and Libraries

I have to say it, libraries are some of my favorite places. They do so much good for the community and all for free to little cost to that community. So I’m so happy when I get invited to do an event there. I just had a talking gig with the St. Clair library and it was my best event yet. I got to meet some local writers and readers and had just the best time. So let’s talk about talks.

I’ve been asked how I get them, and hooking up with the event coordinator of local libraries is my first recommendation. I will also say that you will probably have to do a number of free talks before you get offered the paid gigs. Do not think yourself above these. It’s getting your name out into the community and introducing you to readers. Often devoted readers if they use their library regularly and attend their events. And you don’t have to pay for the space or venue to sell your books, so free talks are a great opportunity for you. All you need are the books and a quick set up, which we’ve talked about.

After some experience and good word about the great talks you give, you may be offered an honorarium for speaking. This is a fee they pay you for your time and expertise. But like I said, don’t expect this for your first gig. Build up your skills and reputation first.

Other places to give speaking engagements include conventions and conferences. But you may need a CV or in with a person first. You can do this by networking and building up your expertise on a subject. If you are knowledgeable on a certain topic or area of study, you will be more appealing as a speaker. Build your experience, then reach out for more gigs.

You never know where the next opportunity will come from, so always do your best and be professional in every interaction. Networking has really helped me get my foot beyond the door when it comes to these opportunities. And my love of teaching and working with new writers. It shows in my talks as does me trying my best just to be genuine and helpful. I don’t go in thinking I’m here to lecture these people. No one likes a lecture, and I don’t aim to be an authority figure.

Now some tips for anxiety, which is the second biggest question I get about getting talks. What do you do when you have anxiety? First of all, people are more understanding and kind then we give them credit for. They know and expect you to be nervous. And they forgive you and give you a lot of grace for being nervous. My voice wavers even at times when I get flustered. People smile and encourage me to go on. I’ve even been told it’s cute! And then I get my bearings and power through. And because I focus on being personable, joking around and being relatable while I give out great information, I get told I give awesome talks! Shaky voice and all! So you can do it.

My biggest tip is to control your breathing. Slowing your breathing literally slows your heart rate and the affects of adrenaline when you are nervous or panicky. So breathe in to the count of 4, hold it for 7, and breathe out to the count of 8 a few times before you begin. Speak slowly and clearly. And just keep breathing deeply. Also have a drink with you. Nerves makes your mouth go really dry and you are trying to talk the whole time with no saliva. Drinks help more than you realize.

So, do not be afraid to sign up for a talk even if you feel nervous about public speaking. Practice the speech out loud at home, and you will do great! I had the best time ever at my last event. It was at the St. Clair Library near my hometown. Here’s some pics from the event and as always, keep writing!

NEW RELEASE and Why You Should Celebrate Your Wins

It’s been ages since I posted here. Not only has Heavenfire come out, but the final book of the Angelborn series, Demonkind, released yesterday. Here’s a bit about the book.

Just because you slay a powerful half-demon, doesn’t mean you are free of him. 

After a long struggle, Ginny and the Alliance are finally free of the threat of Jacob and his changeling minions. His influence still lingers, though. In whispers and rumors throughout the Alliance and those members who have split from them in their time of need. And in his most devout servant, Marta, who will stop at nothing to bring Jacob back. They know how to travel between Earth and Perdition. And they know just how to stop the angelborn. By removing the angel himself.

Full out war has been declared, and everyone must choose a side in this final showdown.


This book was special to me because it was my last time with these characters I had grown to love so much. Ginny and Aiden especially are very dear to me, and I feel like I know them so well. It’s hard to say goodbye as I start to write about new characters.

It also made it more important to me to celebrate this release. I believe in celebrating every victory, no matter how small. So my sissy and I have a ritual we do for every book. She bakes and decorates a cake for it and we go out to dinner somewhere special. Last night we did sushi and donuts before coming home for a slice of cake. Here’s a picture of the wonderful cake she made.


I love cake, and it’s a great way to talk about your book on social media. Sharing the pictures of your cake while you’re celebrating a book birthday is a nice way to post about your release while using different images than the promo graphics you’ve been posting all launch. It’s also fun and you get to eat cake.

But you should celebrate every book you write and publish. It’s not easy to do either, let alone both, and it is a big deal every time you do it. It helps to positively reinforce what you are doing and help you to keep doing it. It’s also validation for what you’ve accomplished. Too often writers hear that anyone can write when in fact it’s really hard to write a novel, let alone take it any further. So treat yourself when you release a book. Go get your favorite dinner and have a drink with a friend. Bake yourself a cake and post the pics on social media. Tell people about what you have done. Celebrate and remember, you accomplished something great!

Grab your copy of the exciting finale today at

St. Clair Art Fair!

Just popping in today to say I have a special event coming up! If you are in Michigan this month, stop by the St. Clair Art Fair June 29th to see some great artists and chat with this local author! I will be set up in front of Distinctive Eyewear in the Riverview Plaza downtown during the fair, selling and signing copies of Angelborn and Heavenfire. If you are in the area, please stop by! I’d love to chat with you and it looks to be a great event.

In the meantime, happy reading!


Interview with Jules Brand from A Kiss for Luck

Hello! And thanks for joining me today. I have a real treat, an interview with the ever elusive conman, Jules Brand. He gets up to some trouble and dances with Lady Luck, so I was pleased to get him to join me here. You can read about some of his adventures in A Kiss for Luck. Let’s get started.

Welcome Jules, to my little hideout. Or would you prefer to go by a different name?

You, my beauty, can call me whatever you like.


Tell me a little about yourself. I know you keep busy with your “jobs” and your rules. What’s with the rules anyway?

When I was young and just starting out, a gorgeous woman named Delia London taught me the Rules of the Game. I’ve expanded them since then, to cover scenarios that Delia couldn’t foresee.


You work in a dangerous “profession,” so tell me why you’re more of a lover than a fighter.

Because blood stains silk, darling. And honey makes a much better trap than vinegar.


What did you really think of Stanzi when you first met her?

That she was the most beautiful woman I’d ever seen. Oh, you want the truth? Well, she is beautiful. When I first saw her, I was certain my Luck was about to change. And when we met, I knew I was going to have a lot of fun.


What was special about Stanzi compared to your other marks?

At first, nothing. When I learned she was Delia’s niece, that explained my attraction. It was the way she approached life, with equal parts innocence and ferocity, that made my world spin.


If you could, what’s one thing you would want everyone to know about you?

That I’m completely trustworthy, of course.


Since this is the scoop on you, what’s one secret you can share with me?

With you, darling, I would share the world.


What’s your biggest regret?

*checks Patek Philippe watch* Looks like we’re running short on time. Let’s move ahead, shall we?


I know Luck is everything to you. Can you explain Luck for us?

*fingers pendant* Ah, Lady Luck. As seductive as any lover, and more capricious than a spring day. To lay in the arms of Luck is worth any price she demands.


What’s your favorite drink?

Champagne, of course. Is there anything else?


What would an ideal evening be for you?

Whatever you desire. My only wish is to please you.


Leave us with your parting thoughts before you sneak away to your next job.

I never sneak. But Europe has grown tiresome. It’s time to catch up with some old friends in the States. I hear New York is nice this time of year.


Thanks for joining us. I know you’re used to fancier hide outs, so I’m honored you joined us here. Check out Jules Brand and his adventures in A Kiss for Luck by Isa McLaren. This lighthearted crime story is sure to delight you as Stanzi (more ordinarily called Connie) and Jules find themselves in the crosshairs of Jules’s last mark and it takes all their wits to escape with their lives. Here’s the blurb:

When Connie Munro gets a sudden inheritance, she takes her dream vacation to Italy. On a whim, she kisses a stranger on the famous Ponte Vecchio. When her toes uncurl, she finds herself in a whirlwind fling.

Jules Brand is down on his luck. A con job gone wrong lead to a murder, with him as the prime suspect. He returns to his good luck city, Florence, to turn things around.  When Connie asks him for a kiss, he knows his luck has changed.

But Luck is a capricious mistress and Hagen Geier is bent on revenge. When Brand’s past catches up to him, Connie is caught in the cross-fire. She must rely on the charming con artist to get her out of it. She wouldn’t trust him with her purse, but what about her life?

You can grab this thrilling tale at or in paperback at today!


Isa McLaren enjoys casing museums and luxury condos in her free time. She resides in hot, humid North Carolina with her two burglar cats, John Archibald Dortmunder and Bernie Rhodenbarr. When not trying to ditch a tail, she can be found crafting the perfect cocktail for any occasion. A Kiss for Luck is the first book in her Art of Lying series, starring the charming con artist, Jules Brand.

Here’s where you can find Isa McLaren online


Twitter: @IWMcLaren


Thanks again and happy conning!


Heavenfire out Now

So I have had a crazy week last week and didn’t get a chance to post until now. But Heavenfire released on Thursday! We continue on the journey with Ginny and Aiden as they get a new mission that takes them half-way across the world. Here’s the blurb:

A divine sword, magic tomes, and uncontrolled power. Can 16-year-old Ginny Gracehurst keep them from an obsessed half-demon?

After retrieving the only thing that could set Jacob’s demon father free, half-angel Ginny has a new mission. She and Aiden are charged with collecting the Eternal Tomes, which teach how to use sigils in the Angelic Tongue.

They are in a race against Jacob and his minions, who can travel anywhere in a matter of seconds. Allowing demonkind to learn those sigils would spell disaster for them all. In order to get what he wants, Jacob needs one more thing besides the Tomes—Ginny herself.

I’m so excited to have this new release come out. It’s been a long time coming for me, as I wrote it a while before I published the first book in the series even. And it’s my first official new release through Three Furies Press. We are coming out of the gate running and doing exciting things, including having a full publishing schedule all the way to the end of the year! We also have a ton of great merchandise, including Angelborn, Heavenfire, Team Angelborn, and Team Demonkind gear you can snag at

Another thing that happened last week was a book signing I did downtown in my hometown at The Exquisite Corpse Coffee House. This is the cafe where I actually wrote the first book and some of Heavenfire at. I would go to the cafe everyday and work on a couple chapters. It’s a great local spot and I was happy they agreed to host me for my signing celebrating the release of this book. It was a special event for me. But it did make last week a bit hectic with both the release and the signing. I do struggle with anxiety, so events can take a lot out of me, and I just didn’t have it in me to blog about it until today.

I am a strong believer in celebrating each release, so I also made sure to make release day special. I had a small Facebook party with a few friends and then dinner out and cake with my family. I didn’t have to go too crazy, knowing I would be seeing more family and friends at the signing, but it is so important to celebrate each book on release day. It’s all about each victory. You’ve poured your heart and soul into creating a new book for the world, and it’s no small accomplishment. So do something to mark the occasion. I also really believe in real life events, which I’ve talked about a bit on this blog. I would recommend doing them, even in a small town. My city is pretty small, but it’s a good way to still get visibility in the writing community, and I already have my next signing and talk scheduled at a nearby library. Maybe I can do a blog post about that soon.

But if you are eagerly awaiting this release, grab your copy at or in paperback at

And start the adventure today with Angelborn available at

Thanks so much for joining me today as I talk about my new book. Happy writing!


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Interview with A.F. Stewart

Today I am happy to talk with A.F. Stewart about her new trilogy that is finally all out. Check out what she had to say!

Hello and welcome. Tell us a little bit about yourself and what you write.

I’m from Nova Scotia, Canada, and I lead an average boring life. I’m a homebody, a geek, and my great weekly adventure is usually navigating the grocery store. I write fantasy, horror and poetry, watch TV, read, and occasionally go out to the movies. I’ve published a few books that include my epic fantasy trilogy, a few fantasy and horror novellas, collections of short stories, and six volumes of poetry.


When did you start writing and what inspired you to write?

I’ve been writing since I was a child, scribbling stories, poems, even an ill-conceived attempt at songwriting. My imagination doesn’t shut off, and ideas have always bounced around in my head.  


Now I know you like to write horror and dark fiction, what draws you to these darker sides?

The psychological aspects of the darker side of human beings fascinate me. What makes people go to extremes, their motivations for violence, etc. Also, I like exploring the more primal mythologies, the things we fear, the things that go bump in the night.  


You also write poetry, tell us how that affects your prose writing.

I suppose it influences the descriptive passages of my writing, making them a bit more fanciful and flowery. For me, though, they are mostly separate things.


What are some of your favorite themes to write about? What draws you to them?

I like using the theme of consequences in my writing and ideas like obsession and secrecy. Following the thread of one act creating a ripple effect or exploring how one person’s actions can damage the people around them is dissecting the human condition. Most everything we do interacts with or effects someone else, even if it is in small non-consequential ways. I just make those interactions a bit more dramatic than normal.


Who is your favorite character you’ve ever written and why? Tell us a bit about them.

I’ve written several fun characters, but Balthazar (from my Killers and Demons series) is special; writing his character, I can go all out with the evil. He’s an immortal demon who loves his job (he hunts down escaped souls from Hell) and has no morals at all. He doesn’t believe in mercy, hates humans, is vain about his appearance, and loves fine wine. He does, however, have an aversion to cats, cat videos, and cat memes and generally avoids all things feline.


Who is your favorite author and how have they influenced your writing?

I have a tie for my favourite author between Neil Gaiman and Guy Gavriel Kay. They are both marvellous writers and I think their lyrical styles influenced me, as well as Neil Gaiman’s dark themes and Guy Gavriel Kay’s tragic characters. However, the one writer who had the most influence on my writing was Ray Bradbury; his poetic macabre style is brilliant.


What is your all-time favorite book? And why?

It’s hard to pick, but my all-time favourite book would most likely be Sailing to Sarantium by Guy Gavriel Kay. It’s alternate history combined with fantasy wrapped up in this beautiful poetic tragedy and it is brilliant.


Now, you have the third book of your newest trilogy coming out, why don’t you tell us a little bit about the series and about the newest third book.

The series is called Saga of the Outer Islands and takes place in the fictional fantasy world of the Seven Kingdoms and the Outer Islands. The novels follow the adventures of Captain Rafe Morrow (also known as the God of Souls) and the crew of the sailing ship, Celestial Jewel, as they fight sea monsters, dysfunctional gods and a sinister Nightmare Crow. Ghosts, pirates, the navy, witches, and an Oracle also show up in the books.

Book one is Ghosts of the Sea Moon and focuses on gods and ghosts, while book two, Souls of the Dark Sea, has an evil sea monster demi-god, witches, and walking skeletons rising from their watery graves. Book three, Renegades of the Lost Sea, brings the series antagonist, the Nightmare Crow, to the forefront along with some bloodthirsty resurrected-from-the-dead pirates. Also, Rafe’s parents make appearances in book three, particularly his mother, who is Death (and has a backstory with the Nightmare Crow).


What did writing this trilogy in particular teach you?

Most of what I wrote before were standalone books or story collections, so it was a good lesson in plotting out a series.


Where will you go next?

I have several projects in the works, and next up is finishing my new poetry book, Places of Poetry. Then I’ll be working on the first installment of my Obsidian Blade series, a paranormal story of an assassin working in Renaissance Venice. I’ll also be plotting out the rest of my Camelot Immortals series, and working on finishing The Prophecy of Seven, the first book in my fantasy series, Realm of the Fallen. And some time soon, the Hell’s Empire anthology will be released, with my story Infernal Patrol.


Now, where can we stalk you?

I’m over on Twitter:

On BookBub:

I have my own Facebook group:

And I post a bit over on Instagram:

I also have a Patreon page (where I’ll be giving sneak peeks of the Obsidian Blade series):


And lastly, my website:



It is with very real pleasure that I make this announcement today. Along with Isa McLaren and Rebekah Jonesy, I am pleased as punch to say we are launching our new publishing house, Three Furies Press! Three Furies Press already has a focused and dedicated team and authors we are excited to be publishing for 2019 and beyond. Our release schedule starts in April with the re-release of Angelborn on the 11th and the premier release of Heavenfire on the 25th. I cannot wait to get these books out to you and will have more information on these soon. Keep an eye out for buy links for my books and other books published by Three Furies Press.


Three Furies Press is a passion for all of us, and we are taking our experience and expertise with us to this new project. We are dedicated to publishing high quality books and making exciting merchandise. We may expand to other avenues in the future, so keep a watch out for the exciting things we will have coming.


I hope you are all as excited as I am! And look forward to the releases of the Angelborn series coming this month!


In Real Life Events: the setup

IRL Events Continued

A couple of weeks ago we talked about doing IRL events, like signings, talks, and conventions. Now let’s look at what exactly you’ll need for setup. So let’s begin.


What Do You Need?

First you need your setup. This includes things like a tablecloth, runners, signs, banners, a candy bowl, bookmarks, business cards, etc. Let’s take a closer look from here.

Your table setup is super important. It’s what makes you look professional and grabs people’s eye. So make it eye catching while still getting info across. Post excerpts and ads to merchandise for example. Prop up your books on stands as it’s more visually appealing. Show your name off with something like a runner or a banner. Consider making an author logo and/or a series logo for your books to put on your runner or banner. Here’s an example of my signing table at my last event. I often have a sign for my bio with my links on where people can find me online as well as an ad for my merchandise. I do have a runner with my author logo as well. Take a look.


Your handler is the most important thing you’ll need. This person plays a pivotal role. Not only of an assistant to keep the show running smooth, but they will also keep you calm when you’re a bundle of nerves, take photos of you during the event and with your fans, handle the nitty gritty things like collecting the money for your books while you talk to the fans and sign books, and run interference if anything is derailing you. They are also great for talking you and your story up to people who are unsure whether they want to buy. 

You’ll also need things for sales. Change for cash and even a counterfeit pen to check the money coming in. Receipt paper for those who want a receipt. A credit card reader works wonders in this day and age where many don’t carry cash, and they are easy to operate. And a record book to keep track of your sales. 

Other things you may need are things to entice people to your table. Bring cookies or have a candy bowl. Have prizes or swag either to give away or sell. There are lots of different Print on Demand sites where you can have merchandise made. It will draw people over to your table and get them to ask questions about your book. Consider holding a raffle for a prize or two. The prizes could be something as simple as a notebook or coffee mug. Or even a t-shirt. Keep in mind though that you need to make sure you have the right license on your images for your cover before you make merchandise. Otherwise it may cause you legal trouble.


Finally, have what you need to make yourself comfortable. An extra sweater to keep yourself warm, something to drink to keep you hydrated and awake if need be, and snacks to keep your blood sugar up. 


Now you’re all ready for your IRL events! Happy signings!

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