Launch Day!

Bound by Kate Sparkes is here! Just got my copy 🙂

disregard the prologue

Today is the OFFICIAL launch day for Bound!

Most of the partying is happening over on Facebook, where I’m giving away a e-books, a signed paperback prize pack, and a few other goodies. But because I like you guys, and just in case you can’t make it over there, we’re going to do an e-book giveaway JUST for you.

IMG_5663 Party prize!

Let’s hope this works… I’ve never used Rafflecopter before.

The book is already getting great reviews, and people who are reading say they can’t put it down. I know I shouldn’t rely on external validation… but that feels pretty good!

The book and I are featured on a few blogs today, if you’d like to stop by and say hello. Colin F. Barnes asked me five rapid-fire questions that were a blast to answer. Joanne Guidoccio has my guest post on my author’s journey. And Jessica…

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From the Archives: Listen to Your Inner Voice

To celebrate the one year anniversary of my blog (March 13th), I’m publishing select posts throughout the year under the title “From the Archives” for those who may have missed them the first time around.

Next up…Listen to Your Inner Voice

As the local high schools prepare for commencement ceremonies this weekend, I find myself reminiscing about my own high school graduation.

I was proud to have completed another milestone and at seventeen, I was almost officially an adult. I was looking forward to my next adventure in college. My mother had always joked that she and my father raised the five of us to be independent and then realized they had to live with us when we’d try to assert that independence. Obviously, I was more than ready to strike out on my own. Although I looked forward to that change, I was also saddened and a little uneasy by what it would bring. My whole world existed within a radius no wider than 20 miles.  I had traveled outside that small circle on a few occasions. It was both unsettling and exhilarating to leave the comfort of all I had known.

“It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to.” J.R.R. Tolkien

(Here I go with the quotes again). Looking back on it now I realize I had no clue where it would take me or how long it would be until I accepted who I really was. I had always been good at math, but not exceptional. I just didn’t enjoy it enough to put in any effort into studying. My mother was a math teacher, the head of the math department at my high school, She taught the talented and gifted classes, so naturally, I should pursue a career that involved numbers. I chose Accounting and ignored what my instinct was telling me. I’d always been something of a dreamer, a creative being who spent hours drawing and filled entire notebooks with poems (hopefully any record of those juvenile musings has long since been destroyed).

“Those who dream by day are cognizant of many things which escape those who dream only by night.”  Edgar Allan Poe

But my observation showed fortune doesn’t favor the dreamer, so I spent years suppressing that intuition. My idea of what I should become hinged on the opinions of others and what society expected. Success meant acquiring wealth, power, and possessions; at least that is how society had defined it. I was reluctant to give my opinion any value. I was just a kid after all, what did I know? Actually…it turns out I knew more than I thought. I discovered that another rung on the career ladder and a bigger house still left me unsatisfied. Why? Because society’s definition of success is a lie. Shouldn’t “happiness” figure most prominently in that definition?

If I were to give advice to the graduates this weekend, I’d tell them to listen to that inner voice. It is far wiser than we give it credit. No one knows you better than you know yourself. We each have our own unique combination of talents, abilities, experiences and perspectives. If you want to truly be successful, maximize the qualities that make you…you. Do what makes you happy. Ignore what others say you should do or be. Embrace who you are; otherwise, you waste the opportunity to leave your unique imprint on this world that says you were here and all of your experiences, talents and abilities mattered.

Since I’m discussing advice for graduates, I wanted to share some of my favorite commencement speeches. Take their advice: appreciate the benefits of failure and make good art.

Teaser Tuesday: The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

photo credit: Goodreads
photo credit: Goodreads

People have been raving about this best-selling book so I’m reading The Fault in Our Stars by John Green before seeing the movie (release date is June 6th). Here’s a teaser:

“May I see you again?” he asked. There was an endearing nervousness in his voice.

I smiled. “Sure.”

“Tomorrow?” he asked.

“Patience, grasshopper,” I counseled. “You don’t want to seem overeager.

“Right, that’s why I said tomorrow,” he said. “I want to see you again tonight. But I’m willing to wait all night and much of tomorrow.” I rolled my eyes. “I’m serious,” he said.

“You don’t even know me,” I said. I grabbed the book from the center console. “How about I call you when I finish this?”

“But you don’t even have my phone number,” he said.

“I strongly suspect you wrote it in this book.”

He broke out into that goofy smile. “And you say we don’t know each other.”

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Cover Reveal: Bound

Check it out! New fantasy novel coming soon. If you’ve read any of her blog posts then you know you’re in for a treat.

disregard the prologue

Friends. Darlings. Beloved peoples and kinda-creepy lurkers.

Today is the day.

You’ve all been so supportive and patient. I’m not going to make this all wordy. Here you go. Please feel free to share.

(Cover art by Ravven)


Welcome to Darmid, where magic is a sin, fairy tales are contraband, and the people live in fear of the Sorcerers on the other side of the mountains.

Rowan Greenwood has everything she’s supposed to want from life—a good family, a bright future, and a proposal from a handsome and wealthy magic hunter. She knows she should be content with what she has. If only she could banish the idea that there’s more to life than marriage and children, or let go of the fascination with magic she’s been forced to suppress since childhood.

When Rowan unknowingly saves the life of one of her people’s most feared enemies, that simple act…

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Musical Monday: Wrapped Around Your Finger by The Police

Sting (born Gordon Matthew Thomas Sumner) wrote the song Wrapped Around Your Finger when he was a member of the pop band The Police. Released in 1983, the song was one of five hit singles from the Synchronicity album. Although it never reached number one, it remains one of my favorite songs from the band because of the brilliant lyrics.  There are many interpretations of the song meaning: a rocky divorce (which Sting was going through at the time), a young man caught up in a relationship with an older married woman, and the conflict between Sting and his older more experienced band member, Andy Summers.

Like many of Sting’s songs, it has literary and mythological references to imply meaning. The term Scylla and Charybdis is often used to describe a situation where a person is caught between a rock and a hard place; forced to choose the lesser of two evils. The idiom is derived from Homer’s ancient Greek poem The Odyssey, where Odysseus faces a difficult choice. In order to pass through the Strait of Messina he must choose between two life threatening obstacles: Scylla, a six headed sea monster, or Charybdis, a deadly whirlpool. Avoiding one, meant exposure and certain death for all or some of his shipmates to the other.

In literature it refers to the road of trials along the Hero’s Journey, which I’ll discuss in more detail later. Stay tuned.


“Wrapped Around Your Finger”

You consider me the young apprentice
Caught between the Scylla and Charybdis.
Hypnotized by you if I should linger
Staring at the ring around your finger.
I have only come here seeking knowledge,
Things they would not teach me of in college.
I can see the destiny you sold
turned into a shining band of gold.
I’ll be wrapped around your finger.
I’ll be wrapped around your finger.
Mephistopheles is not your name,
But I know what you’re up to just the same.
I will listen hard to your tuition,
And you will see it come to it’s fruition.

I’ll be wrapped around your finger.
I’ll be wrapped around your finger.

Devil and the deep blue sea behind me
Vanish in the air you’ll never find me.
I will turn your face to alabaster,
Then you’ll find your servant is your master,

And you’ll be wrapped around my finger.
I’ll be wrapped around your finger.
You’ll be wrapped around my finger.
I’ll be wrapped around your finger…..