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Release Blog Tour Stop

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Welcome to Hackaroo’s Reviews stop on the Release blog tour. I am a huge fan of Mr. Merrick and am glad I have gotten to know him. He is an amazing and talented story writer and I am very honored to have him on my blog today. But first, here is a little bit about Matt:

M.R. Merrick is a Canadian writer, and author of Exiled, the first installment in The Protector Series. Having never traveled, he adventures to far off lands through his imagination and in between cups of coffee. As a music lover and proud breakfast enthusiast, he’s usually found at the computer, between a pair of headphones and in front of a large bowl of cereal.

 

 

 

 

About Release:

From Goodreads:

After uniting the shifters and calling in reinforcements, Chase has to face his toughest challenge yet: learning to control his emotions. But as tensions rise and his powers grow, controlling his emotions becomes the least of his problems.

Terrorized by a multi-shifter who is hell-bent on turning him, Chase questions just how far he’s willing to go to stop his father. Meanwhile, Tiki’s virtuous nature has placed him in the middle of Vincent’s past, leaving Chase to oppose a senate of vampires and defend a demon he hates.

Trying to balance his friends, his enemies, and his inner demons, Chase is left searching for answers about the Mark, his destiny, and where he can find the next soul piece. Stopping Riley is his top priority, but as more obstacles arise, he finds himself doubting all the decisions he’s made – especially regarding Rayna.

One thing is for certain: Chase has finally realized that he doesn’t know anything. The light doesn’t always quell the darkness, the monsters don’t always stay in the shadows, and the past doesn’t always stay in the past – sometimes, the demons inside are the hardest to fight.

Now….on with the interview:

Author Interview, Review & Giveaway!: Shark Bait by Jenn Cooksey

  • Where does your writing inspiration come from? Where do you get your ideas? 

Both inspiration and ideas come from two places. First, my imagination. It twists and turns things into something more than they began, and occasionally that something is really cool. And second, everything around me. Since I started writing, I pay attention to things in a more acute manner. When I see something of interest, my imagination takes hold and warps it into different things.

 Once I have a workable idea, or at least something that has done more than piqued my interest, I daydream about it, brainstorming to see if it’s an idea I think will be worth the time investment of exploring more. Sometimes it is and I do more planning and plotting, other times it’s an idea that either isn’t any good, or it isn’t ‘ready’ yet, and so it goes into an ideas folder for later.

  • What made you actually want to start writing?

 In all honesty, it happened by accident. Before I started writing Exiled (really the first type of fiction I had ever tried to write), I was having an incredibly hard week. I needed an escape. Usually I would turn to watching movies, playing video games, or reading books for this, but nothing was working. Nothing had exactly what I wanted, and so I decided to create what I wanted for myself. 

I sat down and wrote a scene with Chase and a demon, and then all these questions started popping into my head: Who is this guy? Why is the demon trying to kill him? Why is he alone? As the answers came to me, what I thought was a really good idea began to percolate and I just didn’t stop. A few months later, Exiled was born and I was extremely excited with what had just happened. I’d spent every night for six months working on it, and I wanted it to be read. So, I spend the next year editing, revising, and learning everything I could about the publishing industry. 

  • Do you have a method to your madness when you write?

I wish I could say yes, but in all honesty, it’s different with each book. Exiled was just written from my mind, no outline or anything. Shift had a very detailed plot that I tried to follow very closely. Whereas Release had a solid outline, which I neglected almost the entire time I was writing it. I visited the outline several times to review it, but I hardly looked at it once I really got going. The emotional turmoil of Release went where I wanted it to go, but it got there in a different way than I had planned.

  • What is the hardest part in writing a book for you? The action, romance, gore?

 The action and gore I don’t have an issue with. Romance was easy because it’s a very minor part of my series, and that had been planned since the beginning. It happens slowly. There is no love at first sight. Everything has advanced naturally for me.

 The hardest part is weaving everything together and knowing what to cut from the books. Some characters, sub plots, etc. appear at first to be either very obvious, or cliché. I wanted them to appear that way, but in the grand scheme of things, I knew they were not. Looking back now however, I realize I could’ve put things together in a different manner and in a much better way. 

I cut about 40,000 words from Exiled, because 80k-100k was the norm for submitting to literary agents. The problem is I ended up cutting out some pretty cool and important stuff that would’ve built the world better, and I never added it back in when I decided to self-publish. Some of those ‘missing’ or ‘obvious’ things have deterred readers from advancing with the series, and I think it was an issue I had with the delivery in Exiled. I’ve learned a lot over the course of this series, and that’s a lesson that is learned over time, I think. I definitely won’t make that mistake again.  

  • What is the easiest part to write about? 

Building all the different Underworlds and creating new monsters is the easiest for me. I literally just close my eyes, start with a single detail, and construct everything around it. It comes very naturally for me, and I think that’s one of the reasons I love writing in the Fantasy genre so much. I get to build my own world, my own rules, and my own monsters. That’s the part I most look forward to when I sit down to write each book. 

  • What was your favorite part to write?

 The same answer as above applies to this, but also, I love writing the scenes that incorporate magic. The elemental magic in The Protector is something I’ve always daydreamed about, since I was a little kid, and I love bringing it to life in my own way.

  •  Since you’ve started working for yourself, have you found it easier to write?

I actually find it more difficult since I decided to work from home. I think I write less. I stress about sales too much, since now I’m dependant on them, and since I’m home with the kids all day, I find myself procrastinating and putting it off when I finally have free time to write.

  • For those that have not had the chance to read Release, what can you tell us about what we might be expecting?

 It’s soul-splitting.

 It’s the most passionate book of the series so far. I always invest all of myself into any book I work on, but this one has my heart splattered on the pages. I knew it was going to be an emotional book to write back when I was working on the first draft of Shift, but when it finally came time to put Release together, it was more emotionally and mentally draining than I was prepared for. I’m still recovering and trying to get back into writing. I was exhausted when it was finished. Release is an incredibly intense piece of the story. 

Thank you so much Matt for allowing me the pleasure of having you on my blog. 🙂 I am very honored that you answered my questions.

Giveaway

 

 The tour giveaway is AWESOME & is INTERNATIONAL!
Grande Prize Pack (3 Winners)
3x Signed paperbacks (Exiled, Shift, Release)
3x Signed 8×10 posters (Exiled, Shift, Release)
5x Bookmarks
1x Notebook (Winner’s choice of cover)

1x Magnet

Runner-up Prize Pack (5 Winners)
1x Signed paperback (Winner’s choice of Exiled, Shift, or Release) with signed poster
1x bookmark (Winner’s choice)
1x Magnet
Secondary Prizes A (10 Winners)
Release eBooks
Secondary Prize B (10 Winners)
1x bookmark (winner’s choice)
1x The Protector magnet
Winners will be chosen as followsFirst 3 names drawn from Rafflecopter will get the grand prize. The following 5 names get the runner-up prize. The following 10 names win ebook copies of Release, and the final 10 names win the swag pack.
There will also be multiple opportunities to win signed paperbacks, signed posters, notebooks, swag packs, and bookmarks throughout the tour on both Twitter (@MRMerrick) and Facebook Fan Page .

 CLICK HERE TO ENTER!!!!!!

 

Bittersweet Seraphim Blog Post

Bittersweet Seraphim has been released from Hell.

Satan Jack invites you to come…and indulge yourself in his journey to save the angel he loves. After running Hell for over a thousand years one foul-mouthed Seraph has changed his end game.

Even if it means destroying the universe, Jack refuses to give up on Emma. He didn’t know what love was until Emma’s skin pressed against his, the addiction to any of his other vices paling in comparison. Jack has never been a fearful man, but he gets it now. Fear comes when you have something to lose. Or someone.

 Trailer :

Summary:

Suffering is worst when you’re doing it alone. But Emma’s taking Hell like an angel—even though her languishing began with having her seraph wings torn from her back. Now her worst enemy lords his body and his evil desires over her while she tries desperately to remember the words to her favorite prayer.

As Devil, Jack used to have Hell and its women humming like well-oiled machines. Too bad he’s nowhere near the place now. Stuck on Earth as a human, he must work with a ragtag team of exiled minions and half-breeds to save the angel who’s become all that matters.

Rescuing a seraph is the plan, but breaking into Hell means letting evil things out. Once they collide, minions and angels converge in the battle of the ages: good versus evil. But which side is which? Will Jack destroy the world as he fights to save Emma, his true and timeless love, from a damnation he designed?

An action-packed sequel to Crushed Seraphim, this tale reveals—time and again—what happens when the heart’s deepest desires break free. With a story both sizzling and sensual, emotional and enigmatic, Debra Anastasia invites readers to join a battle with nothing less than love on the line.

Get some Jack links:

Amazon (Kindle)  |  Amazon (Print)  |   Barnes and Noble  |  Omnific

2 eCopies of Bittersweet Seraphim and 2 eCopies to Crushed Seraphim

Go to Debra Anastasia’s BLOG for a list of tour stops, more chances to win, and a buddy prize with crystal bracelets!

Blog Stop: Shark Bait by Jenn Cooksey

Welcome to my stop on the Back To School Blog Hop of Shark Bait by Jenn Cooksey.

Let me tell you how very excited I am to be a part of this. I met Jenn through twitter and I am very honored to say that not only have I met her in person, but she’s become a very close friend. I love Jenn and I think she is an ah-mazing writer.

I read and reviewd Shark Bait a while ago. You can read my review and check out the tour I took with Jenn HERE plus an interview 😉 .

Here is some info on the book:

Goodreads Description:

Previously homeschooled Camie Ramsey is being shoved into the shark-infested waters of public high school, where even helium filled, penguin bespeckled arm floaties likely won’t help keep her inexperienced, fifteen-year old head above water in that rip current of hormones and emotions.

Camie’s worldly wisdom might be severely lacking (i.e., the closest she’s come to being kissed was sitting too close to the TV whilst Jake Ryan leaned in to give Samantha that fateful 16th birthday kiss), but she does understand her only hope for survival is if she’s thrown some kind of “social” life preserver before she sinks like a freaking rock. However, what will her fate be when she endeavors to flag down the only lifeguard on duty, the enormously popular and ridiculously beautiful Tristan Daniels? The most sought after and virtually most unattainable guy in school who not only makes Camie’s heart flatline on a recurring basis, he’s also the one guy who seemingly doesn’t know she exists.

Feeling like an inept piece of chum that could ultimately be swallowed by Jaws, can Camie get Tristan to rescue her from floundering in the treacherous deep, or is she destined to be Shark Bait?
______________________________________________

Author’s Note:
While the tales themselves are fictional, some of the events and characters are very loosely based in reality and on my experiences—but don’t worry, the names of the characters, most of their unfortunate fashion sense and/or questionable taste in music has been changed to protect the not-so innocent.
______________________________________________

Due to language and some adult content, this book may not be suitable for readers under the age of 16

For my stop on this blog tour, I get to chose an excerpt from the book and I have a reeeeeeally good one. It’s also one of my favorite scenes in the book. This’ll only give you a taste of what a dream-boat Tristan is.

For your reading pleasure:

Aw, crap. This is so what I’d hoped to avoid having to endure tonight. I get in line for the bathroom and what do I hear? It’s a sound so horrific it makes my stomach clench and I have to cover my mouth to keep from retching on bile…-Teresa using foul words to excrete her toxic designs on Tristan. I’m really coming to hate her. She’s standing next to Lisa and with just one other girl between us; I can hear everything coming out of her mouth. I’m seriously considering sticking my fingers in my ears and singing la-la-la-la to myself so I don’t have to be subjects to her torture, because honestly, my temper’s been particularly short lately and I’m afraid I might unleash verbal hell-or worse-on her. At least automotive difficulties are keeping Tristan incommunicado for the time being and maybe once he gets here, he’ll find a safe place to hide.

Or, not…

I waited my turn, kept my mouth shut like a good girl, and by the time I got to the front of the line, I had to go. Perfect timing, if I do say so myself. Unfortunately, I can’t say much for timing on exiting the house after using the facilities. I’d just take barely more than four steps out one of the sliding glass backdoors when, carrying a large pitcher of some kind of red punch and not paying attention to where he was going, a guy clipped the shoulder of a girl who was to my left so that the contents of the pitcher went flying completely drench me. Adding salt to my margarita wound-okay, it isn’t a pitcher of margaritas, but it’s definitely boozy-is that this whole thing happened right in front of none other than the Trollop Triplets and Tristan. I could tell Tristan really wanted to be cracking up and was desperately trying to keep a straight face, but Teresa wasn’t nearly as kind. The disparagingly-vapid-mailicious-pestilent-bitch immediately pointed at me, first cackling and then, howling in savage laughter.

“OH MY GOD!! Hey everyone, look!! That’s the funniest fucking thing I’ve ever seen! Sucks to be you!”

“I don’t know if I’d say that.”

If I weren’t already so thoroughly stunned, Tristan’s disarmingly purred words suddenly coming from right beside me would’ve made me jump out of my skin. My bones may have remained secure, but the look on Tristan’s face is giving my nerves quite the work out. Plus, my palms are tingling so intensly; I wouldn’t be surprised to look and see myself hooked up to electrodes. That being said, I felt his next turn of phrase in my toes…

“While I agree this might not be your best look, I bet you taste pretty good.” His eyes locked on mine and, mesmerized, I watched them shift and change into a darker blue than I’d ever known eyes could be. Then-holy crapolie-you’re SO not gonna believe what he did-he slowly ran his finger down my dripping nose, put said finger in his mouth, and sucked the punch stuff right off of it! “Yep…pretty tasty indeed.”

Am I right? Right? Yes….dreamboat….thy name is Tristan. Sa-woon!

Hurry and get the book at Amazon|Barnes & Noble

Here is a little about my good friend Jenn:

Jenn Cooksey is a Southern California girl born and bred, and proudly boasts being a member of Grossmont High School’s alumni.
She currently resides in the 7th Ring of Hell (aka; Arizona) with her husband (whom she married on a dare while in Las Vegas), their three daughters, and more pets than she has the patience to count.
Aside from her husband and one cat, everyone living under the Cooksey’s roof is female. She’s sure her husband will be not only be awarded sainthood when he kicks the bucket, but that Jesus will welcome him into heaven with a beer and a congratulatory high-five.
She also believes that Bacon should be capitalized. Always.

Stalk me here:
My (Pathetic)
Blog
| Twitter | Facebook | Goodreads

And yes, I’m on Pinterest
now too. *Sigh*

GIVEAWAY

Don’t forget to enter the giveaway for your shot at an e-copy of Shark Bait, but for a chance at the grand prize, the Ultimate Shark Bait Swag Bag, make sure you travel to every blog on the hop and jot down the highlighted letters and what blog you found them at in order to answer the scavenger hunt question! The grand prize giveaway will be at the final stop of the hop over on Jenn Cooksey’s Blog on September 21st!

And since Wordpress is no fun for me, go HERE to my bestie’s blog to enter in the giveaway because Rafflecopter doesn’t work on my blog.

 

Blog Tour Stop: The Dex Files by Karina Halle

Welcome to Hackaroo’s Reviews stop on The Dex Files Blog Tour. The tour is hosted by Emmy at Sinfully Delicious Book Reviews. You can find the complete tour schedule by clicking the banner up top.

Goodreads Description:

The truth is out there…

The Dex-Files is a compilation novel that accompanies the Experiment in Terror Series and is not to be-read as a stand-alone. In the Dex-Files we find a variety of scenes and chapters from the enigmatic Dex Foray’s POV from books #1-6 in the series. Some of these scenes have been previously published, albeit from Perry’s POV, while other scenes are completely new.

In addition to it not being a stand-alone, the novel also contains some major spoilers and should be read only by those who have read all the published books in the series.

Book #1 – Darkhouse

*Lighthouse Meeting
*Pie Scene
*Jenn and Dex

Book #2 – Red Fox

*Bar Scene – extended
*Playing Nurse

Book #3 – Dead Sky Morning

*Strippers
*Truth or Dare
*Tent Scene

Book #4 – Lying Season

*Lunch With Friends
*The Big Question
*The Xmas Party

Book #5 – On Demon Wings

*A Phone Call

Book #6 – Into the Hollow

*Bailout

Why did I enter in this tour?

Well, if you don’t know by now, I am a BIG fan of Karina’s. Like almost to the point of stalker. She has an amazing talent for writing and she is a badass chick as well. I lurve her hardcore.

When I heard that Karina is doing an all-Dex novella….I will admit that I freaked out. Like totally squealed like a fan girl and did a happy jig. No joke. I heart Dex and all the EIT characters THAT much. Dex and Perry are two of my all-time favorite characters. Even though Dex can be an ass but he can be so completely awesome as well.

So what did I think?

So freaking ah-mazing. I knew from the start that going into Dex’s mind would be a naughty/crazy experience. I saw snippets from Karina’s page and I could not wait to get my hands on it. So many times in the entire Experiment In Terror series, I always wanted to know what was behind those dark, dark eyes of his. What was he thinking? What was he feeling?

Being inside his mind was incredible. I’m not much for too many guys’ POV but Halle does a great job. She really does have an amazing talent for writing.

A Dex sample, totally free. She didn’t have to buy the thing, but she did. I’m a good product.

If you’re paying attention to what you’re reading in this book, things will start to click and unravel. Pick up on all the clues and follow the trail. 🙂

This started off showing Dex as a small child and a peek from Old Blood. From the beginning you can sense that Dex wasn’t the norm and he doesn’t see things as the norm. But that’s what makes him so great in my opinion. Reading everything that he went through and learning more about how is he why he is is fantastic.

It was really great to learn more about Abby, Maximus, and Jenn. See where they all played their part in his life. When he first sees Perry and really sees her.

But crude man-whores don’t last forever. Eventually they meet someone who puts all the other women to shame. Sometimes it’s someone you least expect.

The book ends with a peek into the next installment and I cannot wait til I can get my hands on it!

Favorite Quotes:

I wanted to let her know she was going to be OK. There was something so vulnerable and restrained about Perry, something that made me want to do stupis, ridiculous things keep her safe. At the same time, I wanted to draw her out and make her strong, like a diamond from coal.

Now it was my time to blush. Except that I’m a man and I don’t do that.

********DON’T FORGET TO ENTER IN THE GIVEAWAY!!!!********CLICK HERE——> GIVEAWAY****************

Author Interview, Review & Giveaway!: Shark Bait by Jenn Cooksey

Shark Bait by Jenn Cooksey

Goodreads Description:

Previously homeschooled Camie Ramsey is being shoved into the shark-infested waters of public high school, where even helium filled, penguin bespeckled arm floaties likely won’t help keep her inexperienced, fifteen-year old head above water in that rip current of hormones and emotions.
Camie’s worldly wisdom might be severely lacking (i.e., the closest she’s come to being kissed was sitting too close to the TV whilst Jake Ryan leaned in to give Samantha that fateful 16th birthday kiss), but she does understand her only hope for survival is if she’s thrown some kind of “social” life preserver before she sinks like a freaking rock. However, what will her fate be when she endeavors to flag down the only lifeguard on duty, the enormously popular and ridiculously beautiful Tristan Daniels? The most sought after and virtually most unattainable guy in school who not only makes Camie’s heart flatline on a recurring basis, he’s also the one guy who seemingly doesn’t know she exists.

Feeling like an inept piece of chum that could ultimately be swallowed by Jaws, can Camie get Tristan to rescue her from floundering in the treacherous deep, or is she destined to be Shark Bait?

Author’s Note:
While the tales themselves are fictional, some of the events and characters are very loosely based in reality and on my experiences—but don’t worry, the names of the characters, most of their unfortunate fashion sense and/or questionable taste in music has been changed to protect the not-so innocent.
______________________________________________

Due to language and some adult content, this book may not be suitable for readers under the age of 16.

Why did I pick this?

Honestly? This book, in a way, picked me. Ha!

Actually, Jenn Cooksey found me via Twitter and chatted me up. I talked to her for a while and thought (and still think) that she is absolutely one of the sweetest people I know. She asked me to check out her book and if I would be interested in reading it.

I read the description and thought it sounded adorable so I said yes. (I might have batted my eyelashes) 😉

What did I think?

So my initial thought that this book was adorable. I was completely correct. What I hadn’t though about was, was how much I would LOVE this book.

I think what actually caught my attention was the writing style that Cooksey has. The story is narrated by Camie and I instantly fell in love with her. Her attitude is adorable and her snarkiness is incomparable.

So I’ll start this off by introducing the characters 🙂

Camie: The narrator and all-around hero. She has been homeschooled for most of her life by her mother. Once her mother becomes too sick to continue, she is forced to enter into a public highschool for the first time. I really, really enjoyed Camie’s snark and attitude. But what I loved was that no matter what she was for family. I can relate to that considering I have a big family myself.

Tristan: Sa-woon. What a hottie. But oh so complicated. I don’t think I’ve ever read a more complicated fellow. Once you get past all the complications, he is truly drool worthy. What a dreamboat. A swimmer? Hel-lo washboard abs and cut arms. But he also has a good heart and is very sweet.

Jillian: If I ever had a little sister, I would totally want her to be it. She kicks so much arse, it’s hilarious. She is very smart and has a sinister mind. But in a good way. I’d never want to be on her bad side. Ever. She is loyal to the death with Camie and it’s really awesome.

The story was beautifully and hysterically written. I adored every word that jumped off the page. Once I started, I was unable to stop. The interactions between all the characters flowed. I was taken back to my 16 year old self with a bit os nostalgia. Ahhhh the teenage years. 🙂 She completely captured the way a 16 year old thinks.

Along with the laughs, this also has plenty of swoony moments and heart-wrenching moments. Cooksey truly has a way with words and character development. I can’t wait to read the rest of the series and see what happens next.

If you haven’t gotten a chance to pick this up, do it NOW! Get it at Amazon. It’s only $2.99.

Favorite Quote:

One of my favorite lines is from Camie’s dad. Her parents are the coolest. 😉

“That being said, you are under no circumstances to ever, and I mean never young lady, get in a car with someone who’s been drinking or doing drugs. Do you understand?”

“Yeah, Daddy, I won’t. I promise.”

“I mean it Cameron. I don’t care if it’s Jesus himself behind the wheel, if He’s been sippin’ on His own homemade wine, you call for a ride home,” my dad said sternly with a hint of an evangelical tone in his voice.

About Jenn:

Jenn Cooksey is a Southern California girl born and bred, and proudly boasts being a member of Grossmont High School’s alumni.
She currently resides in the 7th Ring of Hell (aka; Arizona) with her husband (whom she married on a dare while in Las Vegas), their three daughters, and more pets than she has the patience to count.
Aside from her husband and one cat, everyone living under the Cooksey’s roof is female. She’s sure her husband will be not only be awarded sainthood when he kicks the bucket, but that Jesus will welcome him into heaven with a beer and a congratulatory high-five.
She also believes that Bacon should be capitalized. Always.

You can learn more about Jenn and her books at:
www.jenncooksey.blogspot.com Or follow her on Facebook at Jenn Cooksey Novels and on Twitter @Jenn_Cooksey

Now, I actually had the distinct pleasure of meeting the fabulous Jenn Cooksey down in San Diego a few weeks back. Let me just put a note in here and say that I adore her. She has such a fantastic personality and is an amazing writer. This is my first author interview (officially) on this blog and I feel very privialged that Jenn took time out of her vacation to cater to a fangirl blogger and give her a tour. 🙂

A tour you say? That’s right I went to the actual high school that the book was based around. It was so freaking awesome. It made the characters so much more real to me. Almost like I could see the characters walking down the hallway or hanging out in the quad. Just like in the book. Here are a couple photos. When you read the book, you’ll understand the meaning behind these photos.

School Sign “Grossmont High School”

The Football field

The Stage *swoons*

~* THE INTERVIEW*~

So I have to say that I’m still trying to grasp why *anyone* would want to take the time out of their life to drive over two hours (one way!) just to meet me, but I’m so very glad you did, Jess. I think that day will probably go down in history as one of the coolest experiences in both my professional life and personal one.
 
As an author, meeting you and talking with you in person really put a face on the book blogging industry and the many amazing and dedicated people out there who do what you do simply out of a passionate love of reading. It was an invaluable experience that I think will go a long way in my future relationships with the un-sung hero/professionals in the book blogging community. I don’t know how many people truly understand that what you guys do is extremely hard work and that most of you do it just because you love books, but I know it can’t be easy. It’s a tiresome, unpaid and thankless job, but the literary world wouldn’t be nearly as rich without you, so I for one would like to go on record by saying how much I appreciate and value what you do. Hell, if I could write HTML (which I can’t—much to my eternal disappointment), I would write in a standing ovation complete with whistling and confetti. Seriously, in my opinion, you guys deserve a freaking ticker-tape parade.
Awe I ❤ you!! I’m sure you just made a bunch of brownie points with some bloggers too. 😉

1. When I read the author’s notes on the book description, it says the events/people were changed to protect the not so innocent. Does this mean that this book was based off of events that happened in your life?

Sort of, but only very loosely. The actual books in the Grab Your Pole Series and the stories contained therein are, as a whole, entirely fictional. However, there are some specific events that did either happen to me or someone I know. I always thought it would be fun to have a page on my pathetic blog (or really awesome website that hasn’t been built yet because I’m HTML deficient and challenged) where book bloggers can submit their guesses about what was real in each book and then readers could vote, and then maybe right before the next book comes out I would enlighten everyone and maybe do a giveaway or something for whoever submitted the most correct guesses and for whoever voted on the most correct submissions. If that makes sense. It totally works in my head, but so does a healthy diet made solely of Bacon.

2. What made you actually want to start writing?

Despite being told from the time I was in elementary school that I was a talented writer, I hated reading and I never even considered writing anything unless it was a school assignment. Flash forward [REDACTED] years to when I actually enjoyed reading and was talking to my BBBF (Book Buddy Best Friend) on the phone about a book we’d both just finished. It was like two in the morning or something ridiculous and in discussing what we didn’t like about it and through a series of probably really inappropriate jokes, she and I decided we needed to write a book together. But because I have no life and with her always being insanely busy, “together” end up being me writing the book and her being a sounding board for all my ideas and then sitting down with me to painstakingly edit the manuscript line-by-line. At some point, which I’ll refer to as AGYP—After Grab Your Pole—I might have to go back to that project and see it through to publication.

3. Where did your idea/ideas come from? (If it’s life experience, just chalk it up to question 1)

I’m honestly not sure. I was in the middle of querying that aforementioned project when the first few sentences of Shark Bait hit me upside the head. From there the story just flowed… Although it’s true that I used to homeschool my girls (I actually still was when I started writing the GYP series), but aside from that, my brain hasn’t told me where it gets the ideas. I’m gonna go out on a limb, though, and say that a lot of it comes from the depths of my sub-conscience—I get a lot of ideas when I’m either falling asleep or just on the verge of waking up, and I’ve discovered long after I’ve written something that there are real-life similarities to people I know or events that I personally experienced at some point in my sordid past.

4. Tristan is for sure a VERY complicated guy. Will we be learning about why he’s so complicated in later books?

In a word, definitely. And yes, he is extremely complex—probably the most complicated character I’ve thus far written with Jillian coming in at a close second. But there’s a reason behind every one of Tristan’s quirks and in Book 3 of the series (which is my fav so far), readers will learn a lot about why he is the way he is, and they’ll hear it from the horse’s mouth, so to speak. 😉

5. I loved the fact that the beach was very present in this book. Is there a specific reason why?

No, not really. Unless you count the fact that it’s set in San Diego and that Tristan and Jeff are avid surfers. Besides, anyone who’s grown up in San Diego like I did will have fond and not-so fond memories of the beach. Plus, my aim in the writing of these stories was for them to be as close to real as I could make them, thus I write what I know and what I’m familiar with.

6. Why swimmers? It’s really unusual. You don’t read about swimmers in books really. It’s awesome btw.

That’s pretty much why… I didn’t want to write about the stereotypical jocks, and when I went to Grossmont, swimming and water polo was almost (not quite, but almost) just as huge as football. Not only that, but I knew a lot of the guys who competed in water sports and I have to be honest, the people who surf, swim, dive, and play water polo, are probably the best athletes you’ll ever meet. IMHO anyway. I feel the same way about cheerleaders… The stamina required, the strength and skill, in addition to the grace and sheer talent all those people have is incredible and I have a profound respect for their ability. Not to mention that the average physique of a surfer/swimmer is unparalleled, and if you’re in the market for a drool-worthy character, look no further. I mean seriously, DAMN.

7. Can you give us a small sneak peek into what’s coming in the next books?

Hmmm. Well, that’s tricky to answer without giving too much away, however, if you’re one of those readers who like to expostulate on where a story is going, I’ve written what I call “breadcrumbs” into the books, leaving readers itty-bitty hints at what might be coming up, so if you read the books with an eye for the future, you should be able to see certain things coming. You can be sure though, there will be some sizzling swoon moments, some inherently outrageous LOL segments, and there are some things coming up that may have you reaching for a box of Kleenex. Also, I have a feeling that there will be some readers out there fist pumping and chanting YES!! Although I might be getting hate mail in regards to some events as well.

 And here’s another little tidbit never before revealed to the public; point of fact, Shark Bait is the only book in the Grab Your Pole series told solely from Camie’s point of view (*ahem* minus one teeny-tiny portion in the beginning. :-p). Book 2, The Other Fish in the Sea, is still told primarily by Camie, but you’ll be hearing a little bit from the other girls as well—yes, even Jillian. Book 3, however, is told entirely by the guys. It’s completely awesome and thus far, it’s my favorite book in the series. I have something a smidge different planned for Book 4, though. It’s going to be what’s sometimes called a “special” in terms of books that are part of a series, and this special is gonna be a looong one, going back in time to the summer before Shark Bait takes place and then carrying on to the end of Book 3 and beyond. Book 5, which I plan to write from both the girl’s and guy’s points of view, will pick up at some point after where 4 leaves off, and the series will end with Book 6, amid much clapping and whistling (and maybe even a table dance). At least that’s how I plan to celebrate the finale of what has so far been an epic adventure and phenomenal experience for me. 

 Oh and no, I’m not telling anyone whose point of view Book 4 is being told from. 😉

Thank you so much Jenn for taking the time out to answer my questions. It was completely amazing meeting you and hanging out with you all day. You truly are a fabulous author and person. I feel honored that you carved time out for me! It was so awesome.
Fill out the form below for your chance to win one of three amazing prizes:
1 winner will receive an ebook of Shark Bait
1 winner will receive a printed copy of Shark Bait
1 winner will receive a signed copy of Shark Bait and personalized Shark Bait swag 🙂
Giveaway will be up for a week so plenty of chances to win!!
Now……GO!

Summer Reads Giveaway Hop!

Hosted by I Am A Reader, Not A WriterCo-hosted by Rex Robot Reviews

What’s up for grabs on this hop you ask? Well, I am giving you a chance to win Shark Bait by Jenn Cooksey!

Here is the info on the new book:

Goodreads Description:

Previously homeschooled Camie Ramsey is being shoved into the shark-infested waters of public high school, where even helium filled, penguin bespeckled arm floaties likely won’t help keep her inexperienced, fifteen-year old head above water in that rip current of hormones and emotions.
Camie’s worldly wisdom might be severely lacking (i.e., the closest she’s come to being kissed was sitting too close to the TV whilst Jake Ryan leaned in to give Samantha that fateful 16th birthday kiss), but she does understand her only hope for survival is if she’s thrown some kind of “social” life preserver before she sinks like a freaking rock. However, what will her fate be when she endeavors to flag down the only lifeguard on duty, the enormously popular and ridiculously beautiful Tristan Daniels? The most sought after and virtually most unattainable guy in school who not only makes Camie’s heart flatline on a recurring basis, he’s also the one guy who seemingly doesn’t know she exists.

Feeling like an inept piece of chum that could ultimately be swallowed by Jaws, can Camie get Tristan to rescue her from floundering in the treacherous deep, or is she destined to be Shark Bait?
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Author’s Note:
While the tales themselves are fictional, some of the events and characters are very loosely based in reality and on my experiences—but don’t worry, the names of the characters, most of their unfortunate fashion sense and/or questionable taste in music has been changed to protect the not-so innocent.
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Due to language and some adult content, this book may not be suitable for readers under the age of 16.

Hop to the other blogs!!! Hop, hop, hop… <-Click here 😉

4th of July Giveaway!!!

That’s right! I’m having a special giveaway for the 4th of July!

What’s up for grabs:

An autographed copy of Rapture by Lauren Kate

Never heard of the book?

Goodreads Description:

The sky is dark with wings . . . .

Like sand in an hourglass, time is running out for Luce and Daniel. To stop Lucifer from erasing the past they must find the place where the angels fell to earth. Dark forces are after them, and Daniel doesn’t know if he can do this—live only to lose Luce again and again.

Yet together they will face an epic battle that will end with lifeless bodies . . . and angel dust. Great sacrifices are made. Hearts are destroyed. And suddenly Luce knows what must happen.

For she was meant to be with someone other than Daniel. The curse they’ve borne has always and only been about her—and the love she cast aside. The choice she makes now will be the only one that truly matters.

In the fight for Luce, who will win?

The astonishing conclusion to the FALLEN series. Heaven can’t wait any longer.

Fill out the form below. Contest will run for a week (July 4th – 11th)