Growing Up

Welcome to my Second Acts Series!

Today, we have Soul Mate author Carly Jordynn sharing the transformational journey she has taken with her daughter and her new release, Forest of the Mist: Guardians.

Here’s Carly!

Growing Up may sound like a weird title for somebody in my age group, but that is how I am looking at my life right now. I am a single mom to a daughter that I adopted fourteen years ago. Back then I was immature for my age. I had freedom to do what I wanted when I wanted. I traveled. I went out on dates or with friends. If I wanted to stay home all weekend and binge watch Harry Potter, I could do that. Then I became a mom.

When my daughter came into my life it became a game changer. Don’t get me wrong, I still had fun, but I had to cut back on traveling and I limited my going out time. When she started school, it was like going through school again with her. My daughter has ADD so I have to help her with homework a lot. On any given day you could hear me say as I left work, “I don’t want to go home and do my homework!” We finally got out of elementary school and entered middle school. Oh my gosh! I hated middle school the first time around and I can assure you I am not enjoying it much this time either.

I hear myself all the time saying, “I can’t wait until we’re in high school.” That’s coming up next year and has opened a whole other can of worms. The questions! The endless questions about boys, dating, college, dances, did I mention boys? I’m beginning to think middle school may not be too bad.

So, how does this change me you ask? In several ways I get to relive the best memories I have of those times. I’m getting a refresher course in all subjects. I’ve discovered some of the classes I detested in my day; I am enjoying now. Maybe it’s because my daughter and I do it together and that makes the difference. I’m sure the fact that I’m not being graded this time around helps too  I am more patient, I find humor in some of the silliest things, I enjoy hearing her talk about her friends. I like watching her grow and mature into a beautiful young lady. We are closer now. We not only have a mother/daughter relationship, but we are also friends. I like this new dynamic to the traditional relationship.

Another way I have changed during this time is I am growing as a person. I am definitely smarter with all the classes I’ve been through…again. I find that my opinions are not as hardcore as they once were. I am more flexible in my outlook on life and towards people. I have been overweight most of my life and now I am on the path to a healthier me. I feel better than I have in a long time. My writing career is starting to really take off and that provides me with deep satisfaction. I keep telling my daughter she can do or be anything she wants to be and now I actually believe that. I have more confidence to chase my dreams as I watch my daughter chase hers.

Reinvention, it can happen at any age and proves it’s never too late to capture your dreams.

Blurb

Davy Kyle is in a ton of trouble. That’s really nothing new for Davy as he has been in trouble his whole life. Davy was born in the alternate realm, Paradise Valley. As a result, he has some freakish powers such as rapid growth in body and intelligence, the ability to create portals to transport to the alternate realms, and the ability to know what others are thinking.

During his last adventure, Davy learned he would one day have a co-ruler in the realms and her name would be Kelly. Through a bit of impromptu eavesdropping, he learned that his friends from Paradise Valley, Connor and Lily O’Brien, would name their young daughter Kelly. Shocked at this coincidence, Davy sets out to determine how Kelly will arrive in Paradise since you have to be in a coma to enter the alternate worlds.

Kelly O’Brien was a spoiled six-year-old when family friend and confidant Davy Kyle kidnapped her through a portal to an alternate reality. While there, Davy aged her to sixteen and explained that one day she would be his co-ruler there. While she understood and looked forward to that day, she asked Davy to return her to six and her parents. He did as she asked, but invoked his powers to start accelerated aging and maturity. The alternate realms recognized Kelly and helped with that aging process.

Now Kelly’s parents have enrolled her in high school in the hope she will meet somebody else, fall in love, and forget about Davy and Paradise Valley. What they don’t know is Kelly’s determination to be with Davy no matter the cost.

What Davy does to ensure Kelly’s arrival in Paradise is sooner rather than later will test the ties of his family and friends in reality and may cost him the love of his life.

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Bio and Links

Carly Jordynn is a writer from Northern Kentucky who loves to weave tales of fantasy, paranormal, and romance. When she isn’t writing a book, she enjoys reading, going out with friends, hanging out with her daughter, and living life to the fullest.

Carly loves to travel. You can find her at various conferences and other author events throughout the year. Her hobbies include: travel, photography, reading, and party planning.

Carly is a member of the Romance Writers of America.

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Today, tomorrow, and Sunday–December 7, 8, and 9–Travelers, Book 1 in the Forest of the Mist series is free on Kindle. Find out more here.

Joanne here!

Carly, Thank you for sharing your reinvention story. All the best to you and your daughter as you continue on this journey. Congrats on your new release.


Dealing with Dialogue Tags

saidbookismGlancing back at some of my earlier work, I cringe at my use of “said bookisms” such as roared, admonished, exclaimed, queried, and hissed. I was trying to avoid overusing the word “said” and searched for suitable alternatives. I realize now that substituting those words made it sound like I enjoyed using my thesaurus. Instead, I was annoying the reader and drawing attention away from the dialogue.

From different workshop facilitators, I’ve learned that I don’t have to interpret the dialogue, or worse, tell the reader how the words are said. If the dialogue is strong enough, “he said” and “she said” will do. Like other parts of speech—the, is, and, but—that are used several times on each page, “said” is invisible and allows the reader to concentrate on the action and dialogue.

Continue reading on Carly Jordynn’s blog.


Spotlight on Carly Jordynn

I am happy to feature Soul Mate author Carly Jordynn and her novels, Forest of the Mist: Travelers and Sasha Bishop Retired Slayer.

Here’s Carly!

carlabiddleI started writing following the demise of my marriage. The book had great bones, but the writing was horrible. That book was written in long-hand as I did not own a computer at the time. It now resides on a computer disk in my desk.

Fast forward several years to 2009. It was during this time that I had the flu. I was home from work for several days when the writing bug hit me again. Maybe it was the flu medication, but the idea for the Forest of the Mist series was born. I had a lot of “almost” with this book in regards to landing an agent or publisher. All declined until I submitted to Soul Mate Publishing. Debby, the owner, liked my story. The downside, they didn’t represent young adult at that time. I was so disappointed because I really clicked with Debby and wanted to work with her. I half-heartedly submitted to some other places. I also started writing the second book in the series.

About a year later, I checked in with Debby when I noticed Soul Mate now represented time-travel romance. My series had the time-travel element. She accepted the book. I signed the contract and was assigned an editor. My editor was wonderful. She really had me look at the book with fresh eyes and taught me so much. We edited that book within an inch of its life. It paid off because the e-book went on sale in September. I have since written the second book in the series which I have signed a contract on. It should be out this summer.

In addition to the Forest of the Mist series, I am writing a paranormal series. It is titled the Sasha Bishop series. The first book, Sasha Bishop: Retired Slayer, came out in e-book in October. I am writing the second book in that series now.

I guess one thing I learned on this adventure is to keep trying. Taking a chance and contacting Debby for another shot with Soul Mate was a risk that paid off for me. Now I have three books under contract with the possibility of even more.

Carly’s Books

SashaRetiredSlayer_505x825 (2)Seventeen-year-old Sasha Bishop has done what no other Slayer has. She survived to the retirement age of seventeen. Now she gets to move to a new city, start a new school during her senior year, and she has to leave behind her 167 year old, semi-unofficial, undead boyfriend, Hutch aka Andrew Hutcherson.

At her new school, Sasha becomes friends with her handsome, motorcycle riding, neighbor, Dillon Hutcherson, who bares an uncanny resemblance to Hutch. Sasha digs into the mystery and finds that Hutch fathered a child before he was changed into a vampire in 1865. Further research reveals that Dillon is, in fact, Hutch’s great, great grandson. Now Sasha, with Dillon in tow, must return to her hometown and resume her past duties as the Slayer in order to quell a vampire uprising.

During the first battle, a quirk of fate has Dillon changing into a vampire. Only the quick action of Sasha’s Watcher, Branson Seyfried, saves the boy from becoming one of the undead. A transfusion consisting of Hutch’s vampire venom and Sasha’s slayer blood saves Dillon, but gives him the life of a Halfling. In addition, Hutch now has slayer blood and Sasha has vampire venom. The three are not only a danger to humans, but to vampire kind.

The impending war between human and vampire is nothing compared to the war within Sasha’s own heart as she battles her feelings for Hutch and his grandson. During the final battle, Sasha learns many family secrets, discovers her hearts true love, and finds happiness in a world filled with shadows.

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ForestoftheMist_600 (2)Seventeen year old Lily Lavery never dreamed her homecoming night would turn out like this. First, she was chauffeured to the dance by her parents, while her boyfriend followed in his car behind them. Second, she never dreamed her Dad would lose control of the car and wreck. Third, she never expected to become orphaned, in a coma, and enter an alternate reality, all in one evening. No, she thought she would arrive at the dance to the cheers of her classmates after being crowned homecoming princess at the big game, dance the night away with her handsome boyfriend, Alex McGuire, and maybe end the night in his arms.

Connor O’Brien took one look at the girl, who arrived in the alternate reality known as Paradise Valley, and knew she would be trouble. She oozed it from the top of her tiara, down to her cheerleading uniform. Connor knew that type of girl and vowed to stay away from her. The problem was she looked so sad and broken from her experience. The large class ring on her left-hand, ring finger should have been enough to warn him away, but he found himself drawn to her anyway.

Together, Connor and Lily must battle Kramm, the Warrior King of the Dark Land, and his second in command, Colin O’Brien, Connor’s twin brother, in order to access the portal paths that will lead them back to reality and their sleeping bodies.

What will happen when they return? Will Lily continue her previous life with Alex, or will she stay with Connor, the man of her literal dreams?

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Bio

It was a dark and stormy night. The wind blew the small car all over the road as the young couple rushed to the hospital. Twelve hours later, Carly Jordynn was born. Life has been a roller-coaster ever since.

Carly Jordynn is a writer from Northern Kentucky who loves to weave tales of fantasy, paranormal, and romance. When she isn’t writing a book, she writes lyrics for the Christian band, Phil Parks and One Step Closer.

Carly loves to travel. You can find her at various conferences and other author events throughout the year. Her hobbies include: travel, photography, reading, party-planning, dinner with friends, and hanging out with her family.

Carly is a member of the Romance Writers of America and the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators.

Where to find Carly…

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