I’m seeking beta readers for a 75,000-word gay romance/horror novel.
Contact me if you’re interested in being a beta reader or writing a book review. Thanks.
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Dead Cemetery by Lee Allen Howard
Jarod Huntingdon wants more than anything to have a family with children of his own, yet he’s unable to commit to his girlfriend and doesn’t know why.
He returns home to the remote rural community of Annastasis Creek for a season of soul-searching where he encounters his childhood friend, Scotty McPherson, and—despite their high school fallout—Jarod finds he’s still attracted to him.
When Scotty’s six-year-old niece, Madison, goes missing, a frantic search ensues. A violent rainstorm traps them in the valley, blocks roads, cuts off all communication, and hampers the hunt.
In the meantime, Jarod learns of a curse as old as he is, first placed on the community after five young people perished in a house fire during the sacrifice of a deformed child.
As the curse takes hold, the dead return to abduct the living, and the abducted turn into monsters.
To appease the curse, defrocked Pentecostal pastor Uriah Zalmon must find another sinner to sacrifice. The Covenant Trustees unanimously select Scotty. Who better to play the scapegoat than an “unrepentant homosexual”?
Faced with losing the love and support of his family and community, Jarod must choose between the life he’s always envisioned and saving Scotty from being sacrificed to a great winged beast hibernating in the bowels of an abandoned church.
Can he rescue his true love and break the curse once and for all?
Do you wish you could write more? Guest blogger, Heidi Ruby Miller, author of AMBASADORA and GREENSHIFT, reveals how she increased her daily word count. Keep reading for a chance to win a copy. You’ll want to, because her spicy sci-fi romances rock with action!
I resolved this year to WRITE FIRST.
It was my way of seeing if I could write more. And it worked.
Believe me, I was more surprised than anyone. Over the past five years I had steadily worked out of the century club (100 words per day) to the millennium club (1000 words per day), but then I stalled. I have always been a slow writer, probably because I labor over every word and character motivation, each plot point, the cadence of individual sentences, blah blah blah.
Outlining helped me tremendously once I started graduate school. The planner that I am, I usually had a nice beginning/middle/end worked out, then went from there. When I began to do more extensive outlines (80 pages long), which detailed each scene, I had a rough first draft in no time and a direction to move with the story. That’s when the 1000 words a day came quite easily.
To jump to the next level (like Robert J. Sawyer with his 2000 words a day or Susan Mallery with her 20 pages a day) I needed a little extra mojo. Turns out the solution was simple—write first.
I decided to try my new tactic in 2012 after talking with horror writer and my co-editor of MANY GENRES, ONE CRAFT, Michael A. Arnzen. Instead of New Year’s resolutions, he does focus words—words that he focuses on all year in order to make improvements in his life and career. My words were WRITE MORE, but that seemed too broad, so I decided upon WRITE FIRST.
And that’s what I’ve been doing since January 1. I wake up half an hour early to… work through a yoga routine.
Okay, I know you were expecting me to say “write,” but with as much time as I spend on the computer, I wouldn’t be able to move if I didn’t stretch and breathe first thing in the morning. But then I write. Before I change out of my pajamas or make a cup of tea or surf through all my social media sites or before my husband gets out of bed, I sit down and write for at least 30 minutes. That may not seem like much time, but it’s enough to get a few hundred words in or a few pages revised. More importantly, it brings my story front and center in my mind where it stays all day long.
It becomes a trance-like state for me during the rest of the day. No matter what I’m doing, I’m thinking about my characters, plotting scenes in my head. This compels me to sit back down in front of the laptop and keep writing. Before I know it, I’ve sometimes had 3000 words by day’s end or revised four chapters. More typically, I hit 2000 words, but that’s double what I was doing last year at this time.
Granted, I accrue this word count during various sessions throughout the day, not in one sitting—I would have a constant migraine if that were the case. But it’s working. January 2012 was my most productive month ever. So far February is falling a little shorter with only an average of 1500 words per day, but that’s still 500 more than most days last year. I blame the small lapse on the launch for my latest novel GREENSHIFT, which came out on Valentine’s Day. Obviously, more marketing time was required this month. I fully expect my productivity to kick into overdrive in March… by simply writing first.
Be entered to win a copy of GREENSHIFT or AMBASADORA or both by telling us in comments what you’re reading right now and leave your email address disguised something like heidirubymiller AT gmail. Winners will be drawn randomly on March 1, 2012, and announced on March 2, 2012. Good luck!
About Heidi Ruby Miller
Heidi Ruby Miller has been putting too much sex in her Science Fiction since 2005 because she believes the relationship is as important as the adventure. She loves high-heeled shoes, action movies, Chanel, loud music, and video games.
In a society where breeding and caste are sacrosanct, can you find true love? Heidi Ruby Miller proves you can—in a world with six moons that provides all the imaginative richness a sci-fi milieu can muster. The setting is fantastically painted, concrete, and nothing less than fascinating.
The Embassy coerces broken and remade Ambasadora Sara Mendoza to help squelch the techno-militant fragger rebellion by extracting information from their operative leader. But Sara learns a lot about the Embassy, the system, and her target, and her plans change when she realizes that love is not just an illusion.
AMBASADORA may be billed as sci-fi/romance, but it truly holds something for everyone. The torture scenes are horrifically exquisite, the plot intriguing, the action exciting, and the consummation scene deals out spice in spades! Sara is one tough cookie, and although Sean has a few personal problems, he’s got the right stuff for a hero. I found myself rooting for both of them because Miller not only puts them through their paces, but utterly shreds the hell out of them over the course of this broad novel. As I always say, the basis of drama is conflict, and there’s plenty on every page here.
Our world’s fame-mongering class consciousness takes on stark new meaning when extrapolated to the extent in AMBASADORA. If you enjoy visionary writing from a fresh new voice, I recommend Heidi Ruby Miller.