Thursday, 31 March 2016

Spread Some Indie Love Blog Hop - Linzé Brandon

STORM Volume I is a mix of fantasy, science fiction and dystopian stories where people's lives are influenced by the occurrence of a storm, physical, moral or magical.
Set in worlds apart from our own, authors of the Pretoria Writers' Group give life to characters who may not seem so far away from us after all.

Specially discounted to $0.99 until 7 April 2016. To get the benefit of the discount use coupon code  VY78L when you complete the transaction. Enjoy!

STORM Volume II is a mix of contemporary stories where people's lives are influenced by the occurrence of a storm: physical, moral or imaginary.
Set in a modern day setting, four authors of the Pretoria Writers' Group brings stories from real life, in sometimes difficult circumstances, to this anthology.

Specially discounted to $0.99 until 7 April 2016. To get the benefit of the discount use coupon code  ZY83E when you complete the transaction. Enjoy!

Enter the Giveaway and stand a chance to win an ebook copy of 
Linzé Brandon's latest novel, Michael's Mystery!

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Wednesday, 30 March 2016

A to Z Blog Challenge 2016
I didn't plan on doing another Blog Challenge at the same time as Camp NaNoWriMo, but alas here I am again, unable to resist the difficulties of blogging every day and writing a story every day, for a month. Although I try to write every day, I don't blog every day. Now I am going to do both. So April, here we come - the authors and bloggers...let the games begin!

For my challenge this year, I chose - words. Random words (that I didn't know) picked from my trusty Oxford Dictionary and Thesaurus. Since I pride myself on wanting to learn something new each day, the words of the English language will find themselves to my brain, and my keyboard sometimes with a sarcastic twist.

When I registered I was no 1465 on the list. Just before posting this there were 1487 blogs registered to take part. Wow! If you like reading blogs here is a list you want to check out.  If you are a blogger and want to take part - this is the place to sign up.

If you missed any of my posts during the week, don't despair - there will be a link to each on my Sunday Linzé's Mischief post.

I will be back! On 1 April with this challenge and other exciting posts. 💙

Tuesday, 29 March 2016

The Friendship Affair

The Friendship Affair by Linzé Brandon, blog serial
Not all long lasting marriages are happy. But what do you do if divorce is not an option?

University friends, Stephanie and Nick, meet again after twenty years. But life has not been easy or simple for either of them. Will this friendship affair stand a chance against reality? 


She felt his chest vibrate with silent laughter. She had to smile too. For a moment.
“Yeah, he might not have been the best husband, but he was a smart businessman. Although he knew his decision could be contested due to the Alzheimers, he assembled a panel of people to attest to his state of mind, when he signed the papers. There were lawyers, psychiatrists, and medical doctors. I think he even had a tax consultant present. His family was livid, but there was nothing they could do about it.”
She fell silent and breathed him. There had been no judgment on his side. Had he always been this open minded? She couldn't remember and sighed.
He pulled back and looked down. “Hey, what was that for? I think your husband was a genius. Still an ass, but a genius. By giving you control, he made sure you would be financially secure and not have to worry about his family giving you any grief.”
“Except that the company was already in financial trouble, and I was not equipped to do anything about it.”
She stepped away and sat on the stool at the dressing table.
“I knew I had to do something since he had deteriorated by that time and had to be placed in special care.”
“So soon?”
“If he had gone for treatment sooner, the medication could have slowed down the process, but he had been too stubborn. They put him on meds, but the damage had been done. It still slowed down the progression, but he couldn't go back even a year to what he had.”
“If I understand this correctly, he had been in special care for what, fifteen years...”
“Sixteen,” she added quietly.
“...and you have been the one to pay for his care during all this time? With no support from his family?”

He was stunned. This woman was amazing.
“His family was ashamed of his illness. Since they couldn't contest his decision, they shunned me too. It was hard, but I coped.”
“What about the business?”
She shrugged and got up once more. “I asked an independent forensic accountant to check the books. They were sound, but the company had been bleeding money.”
“The family?”
“Yeah. Very expensive parasites they had turned out to be. Houses, cars, clothes, it was disgusting. I stopped all those payments and had the assets sold to recover some of the losses. By the end of that year, the company was back in the black and doing well, but his medical expenses were high and I couldn't afford them on my salary. I sold the house and the business as soon as I could to set up a trust to ensure that he would be taken care of for the rest of his life.”
“And to ensure that it happens you have to remain married to execute the power of attorney.”
“Yes,” she whispered.
She turned around and looked at him. “I am sorry. I never thought I would...,” she stopped and looked away.
“Don't worry about that now. Come here.”
She closed the distance between them and wrapped her arms around his waist. He felt her fingers dig into his skin but didn't object. She was sacrificing so much of herself and her future, she had to love this guy.
Today they became lovers, but could they go back to being friends again? Or was he going to step away permanently?
He rubbed his cheek against her hair.
“We don't have to figure out everything right this minute,” he murmured. “I still want to see you, but it will be up to you how we are going to define this—”
He grimaced. “I was going to say relationship.”
“Same thing.”
“Okay. Technically you are right, so let's not argue about semantics, shall we? What we need to do is get some sleep and think about this. What do you say?”
He knew what he wanted. What he had to figure out was how he was going to go forward and how he was going to stop his own secret from destroying that glimmer of hope?

Catch all the previous chapters on Wattpad

Monday, 28 March 2016

Book Review: The Yoga of Max's Discontent by Karan Bajaj

I volunteered to review this book as a blog host as part of a blog tour. The tour was cancelled before it commenced.
I first need to clarify my views on the contents of the book before providing the details of my impression of it. I do not subscribe in any way to the spiritual philosophy associated with Yoga or Hinduism. I will not comment on any religious or spiritual aspect of the story.
I found the story to be long with an old-fashioned narrative style - mostly telling not showing, and limited dialogue especially towards the end. The ending seemed abrupt which didn't feel right given the length of the novel and the extensive descriptions in the narration.
The main character, Max was well developed. The reader gets deep insight into his inner turmoil, personal issues, his guilt and his journey to find himself. The way Max is portrayed as a selfish ambitious man on the road to becoming more caring and aware is exceptionally well done.
While his behaviour towards his fellow man rises to new heights, the increasing distance and disinterest in his own sister is a contradiction which I found disconcerting to some extent. How could he care more about other people and less about his own sibling?
Other characters in the story were likeable and remained in character throughout Max's interaction with them. I enjoyed these characters and Max's relationships with them - some fleeting, and others longer. The longer relationships were explored in more depth and they contributed towards Max's search and journey to find that higher level of existence he sought.
Despite the spiritual content, and my misgivings on some aspects of it, I mostly enjoyed reading the story.

My rating:

Sunday, 27 March 2016

Linzé's Mischief: 27 March 2016

It has been a crazy Easter weekend. Francois tore down part of a wall yesterday and it took us hours to help clean up. Bricks and mortar make a huge mess.
We moved the dog kennels and since then our eldest female dog has been upset about it. Tough, it isn't the first time we moved her bed, she will just have to get over it.
I have finished scheduling the 22nd post for the next few weeks here on the Broomstick. As you can see April will be a busy month. A book review, a blog challenge, a blog hop and the continuation of the Friendship Affair are on offer. There are most posts to upload, but I will do those next weekend.
Finished a few books too - three by Amanda Lee (from the Embroidery Mystery series) and one by Alexander McCall Smith (No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series).
My reading list has shrunk, but not by much as I  still have an extensive list on my Kindle and on my bookshelf to read. What better prospect can one have but a stack of hours of reading pleasure?
I haven't started on my editing (as you can see from the widgets on the left side on your screen) but I am not panicking, yet. With Camp NaNoWriMo starting later this week I am looking forward to some writing too.
I finished the first part in the Intimacy trilogy, My Intimate Stranger. For Camp I will be doing part II, My Intimate Friend.
And now I have a book to read. Enjoy the week ahead!

Thursday, 24 March 2016

Series Feature: Bodyguards of L.A. County by Cate Beauman

Falling For Sarah (The Bodyguards Of L.A. County #2)

Widow Sarah Johnson struggled to pick up the pieces after her life was ripped apart. After two years of grieving, she’s found contentment in her thriving business as a photographer to Hollywood’s A-list and in raising her angel-faced daughter, Kylee... until bodyguard and long-time friend Ethan Cooke changes everything with a searing moonlight kiss.

Sarah’s world turns upside down as she struggles with her unexpected attraction to Ethan and the guilt of betraying her husband’s memory. But when blue roses and disturbing notes start appearing on her doorstep, she has no choice but to lean on Ethan as he fights to save her from a stalker that won’t stop until he has what he prizes most.

About the Author
International bestselling author Cate Beauman is known for her full-length, action-packed romantic suspense series, The Bodyguards of L.A. County. Her novels have been nominated for the National Excellence in Romance Fiction Award, National Indie Excellence Award, Golden Quill Award, Writers Touch Award, and have been named Readers Favorite Five Star books. In 2015, JUSTICE FOR ABBY was selected as the Readers' Favorite International Book Award Gold Medalist, while SAVING SOPHIE took the Silver Medal. SAVING SOPHIE was also selected as the 2015 Readers Crown Award winner for Romantic Suspense and FALLING FOR SARAH received the silver medal for the 2014 Readers' Favorite Awards.
Cate makes her home in North Carolina with her husband, two boys, and their St. Bernards, Bear and Jack. Currently Cate is working on Deceiving Bella, the eleventh novel in her popular Bodyguards series.


Contact Cate

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Tuesday, 22 March 2016

The Friendship Affair

The Friendship Affair by Linzé Brandon, blog serial
Not all long lasting marriages are happy. But what do you do if divorce is not an option?
University friends, Stephanie and Nick, meet again after twenty years. But life has not been easy or simple for either of them. Will this friendship affair stand a chance against reality? 

He sat upright but remained in bed sensing that she needed some space.
“What happened?”
She kept looking out of the window even as the words came.
“We had been married for three years when he started to change. It wasn't obvious at first. He would forget small things, and get angry when he realised that. If I tried to help, he would shout at me.”
“Did he—”
“Get violent? Hit me?”
He saw her reflection grimace. “No, but only because I made sure to keep my distance when he became like that.”
“Go on.”
“Most of the time he was fine, and things were normal again. When I remarked to his mother or sisters that he was behaving differently, they told me I imagined things.”
“Did he lose it in front of them?”
She turned suddenly and went to her closet to retrieve her dressing gown. He suspected she was playing for time to collect her thoughts.
He sat forward. “He lied to them, didn't he? Made up some story that put you at fault instead of the illness?”
She turned her back as she put on the lilac gown. She had always loved the pale purple colour. To his mind, it made her look young and beautiful.
“Well?” he prodded. “That's what happened, isn't it?”
She turned slightly but avoiding looking at him. “Yes. He confessed later that he told them that I gave him poisonous mushrooms to eat, by accident, and that it was causing him some difficulties.”
He gasped. “And they believed him?”
She shrugged and moved to pick up her hairbrush. “Why wouldn't they? He was the goose that laid the golden eggs, so everything he said had to be true. I only realised then that they were all financially dependent on him. I was so naive. So stupid.”
He got up and wrapped his arms around her from behind. “You were not stupid.”
“Naive then.”
He tightened his arms slightly. “Maybe. But it is a husband's duty to support his wife and protect her.”
“Even against his own family?”
“Especially against his own family,” he growled.
“But nothing. They practically called you a liar to your face, and to satisfy his foolish pride, he let them think they were right. You should have divorced him right there.”
She turned and looked up at him. Her eyes shattered with the memories. “I couldn't. To appease his mother he went for a blood test to prove that I poisoned him...”
“When they found the real problem. Alzheimers?”
She nodded. “Yeah. It was more advanced that we had thought.”
“What did his family do?”
She dropped her head to his chest. “Nothing. Nothing to help him. Nothing to support me. All they wanted was control of the company so that they could continue to get their money.”
His eyebrows shot up. “I don't suppose he was happy with that situation?”

Her head moved side to side against him. “He did the one thing to guarantee that they couldn't get their hands on the business he had to rebuild after his father screwed it up: he gave full executive control to me.”

Catch up on earlier chapters on Wattpad

Monday, 21 March 2016

Cover Reveal: Quantum series by MS Force

Quantum Spotlight Tour

With Author M.S. Force

Welcome to spotlight event featuring the hot new covers for M.S. Force's Quantum Series! Whether you're already a fan, or new to this great series, eat your heart out at these new covers as part of Novel Publicity's Spotlight Event with author MS Force!
We love these books, and so we're doing a spotlight tour! Did you know that the Quantum books will be getting their own website soon? Watch this space for details, and make sure you check out all the other great books written by Marie Force while you're there!
What's the big deal about the Quantum series?
The Quantum Series, written as M.S. Force, marks Marie’s first foray into erotic romance. In this series, she writes about celebrities working and playing in New York, Los Angeles and other locations around the world while pursuing their passion for dominant sexual relationships. Join the principals of the Quantum production company as each of them meets their match in life and love!
Erotica can be a risky undertaking for many authors, especially if they're well known in other genres already. Our team carefully vets all the books and authors we work with, and here's what we can tell you about this series and author.
  • The characters are well rounded and believable. You'll laugh, cry, and even get angry at one or two of them.
  • The sex scenes are steamy but, and this is a BIG but, they are always consensual. If you're new to dominant relationships and all that goes with them, you might be surprised. MS Force's writing is graphic at times, but it's always done in a way that allows each and every character to maintain integrity. . . just like it should be in real life.
  • We love that these covers are unique, still steamy, but not your typical couple cover!
  • These books aren't just enjoyable for their hottest scenes. There's a whole story between the covers, and it deals with some tough, and for many people, very real and scary situations.
We don't want to reveal too much, but this might just be one of the best erotic romance series out there!

Did you know the first book in the series is $0.99 for a limited time? Check it out!

As part of this event, the author is also hosting a giveaway with some stellar prize packages. Each prize includes four signed paperbacks with the original covers, a $25 Amazon gift card and Quantum swag.

Enter the Rafflecopter Today!

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VirtuousNewhighresThe first installment in the New York Times bestselling Quantum trilogy by author Marie Force, writing as M.S. Force.

He's a sexual dominant. She's sworn off sex. There's no way they can make a relationship work—or can they?

Natalie Bryant has worked for years to reinvent herself into the woman she is today—a happy teacher fresh out of college and enjoying her first winter in New York City with her faithful dog, Fluff. Natalie isn't expecting her life to change completely during a routine stroll through Greenwich Village on a blustery January day. But when Fluff breaks loose and charges into a park, Natalie gives chase and crashes into her destiny. Only after Fluff bites and draws blood from the man who accidentally knocked Natalie down does she realize Fluff has bitten the biggest movie star in the world.

He has no business being enthralled by the gorgeous, young, innocent teacher...

Natalie captivates Flynn Godfrey the moment their eyes meet. And the only thing he knows for certain is if he lets Natalie get away, he'll regret it for the rest of his life. But can he turn his back on the lifestyle that has defined him? And most of all, can he keep his truth hidden from her long enough to have forever with her?

From Hollywood to Las Vegas, Flynn and Natalie's whirlwind love affair has it all—romance, passion, steamy hot sex, relentless paparazzi and a murder that could be their undoing. Flynn is a dirty-talking hero who puts it all on the line for the women he loves, who leaves no desire unfulfilled, who will do anything it takes to protect what's his...

Click here to read the first two chapters of Virtuous.

Valorous, Book 2

ValorousNewhighresThe second installment in the New York Times bestselling Quantum trilogy by author Marie Force, writing as M.S. Force.

He's a sexual dominant. She's sworn off sex. There's no way they can make a relationship work—or can they?

After crashing into her destiny, Natalie discovers destiny can be a double-edged sword when it includes the biggest movie star in the world... Can Flynn and Natalie's new love survive the incessant scrutiny, among other challenges they face?

From Hollywood to Las Vegas, Flynn and Natalie's whirlwind love affair has it all— romance, passion, steamy hot sex, relentless paparazzi and a murder that could be their undoing. Flynn is a dirty-talking hero who puts it all on the line for the women he loves, who leaves no desire unfulfilled, who will do anything it takes to protect what's his...

Victorious, Book 3

VictoriousNewhighresThe third installment and thrilling conclusion in the New York Times bestselling Quantum trilogy by author Marie Force, writing as M.S. Force.

He's a sexual dominant. She's sworn off sex. There's no way they can make a relationship work—or can they?

Flynn and Natalie's destiny is sealed in this riveting conclusion to the initial Quantum trilogy. When Flynn pushes Natalie to her absolute limits, will she fall deeper in love or run away from him forever?

From Hollywood to Las Vegas, Flynn and Natalie's whirlwind love affair has it all—romance, passion, steamy hot sex, relentless paparazzi and a murder that could be their undoing. Flynn is a dirty-talking hero who puts it all on the line for the women he loves, who leaves no desire unfulfilled, who will do anything it takes to protect what's his...

Get started with the Quantum Series and read the first two chapters of Virtuous.

Rapturous, Book 4

RapturousNewhighresHe's a sexual dominant. She's sworn off sex. There's no way they can make a relationship work—or can they?

The story begun in the initial Quantum Trilogy picks up on Oscar night after Academy Award-winning director Hayden Roth kisses the woman he desires above all others, even though he knows she can never be his. Addison York craves her boss’s best friend, Hayden, but he has never given her an ounce of encouragement—until tonight when he kissed her after winning the Oscar. Was that kiss the start of something or another in a long line of frustrations where Hayden is concerned? Something is keeping him from acting on the attraction that simmers between them, and Addie is determined to find out what it is. But when she stumbles upon the secret that Hayden, Flynn and her other close friends have kept from her, will she allow hurt feelings to get in the way of true love? When Hayden won’t share his BDSM lifestyle with her, Addie decides to conduct her own research. Will she be intrigued or repulsed? And what will Hayden do when he finds out how she’s been spending her evenings?

Warning: If you hate foul-mouthed heroes who like it a little rough and dirty, this might not be the book for you…. Contains hot and sexy BDSM scenes among other things that might not appeal to the faint of heart. Enter at your own risk and enjoy the sensual indulgence of Hayden and Addie’s steamy story!

Get started with the Quantum Series and read the first two chapters of Virtuous.

Watch for Ravenous, Book 5, featuring Jasper and Ellie, later this year!

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Thursday, 17 March 2016

Book Feature: Last Vacation by Sarah Elle Emm

About the Book:

Seven days have passed since Naples real estate agent Megan MacKenna has heard from her twin sister, Madeline, who was vacationing on the beautiful, Caribbean island of St. Croix. Though authorities are not convinced there is a case to solve, Megan knows with all of her heart something happened to Maddy. When Megan receives a direct warning to leave the island or end up like her sister, she turns to the only person who has taken her seriously since she arrived, Gabe, a breakfast cook at a local diner. 
Undercover DEA agent, Gabriel Walker has been building his cover for months, waiting for the opportunity to work his way into the infamous Torrez crime ring. When Megan shows up asking questions and Gabe realizes her twin’s disappearance might be linked to the Torrez men, he has to convince her to go back to Florida before she becomes their next victim. 
The closer Megan gets to the truth, the more Gabe begins to suspect he is missing a huge piece of the puzzle. And someone is closing in on Megan…

Buy Links:

Character Interview with GABRIEL:

If you had a free day with no responsibilities and your only mission was to enjoy yourself, what would you do?
I’d pinch myself to see if it was real. My only mission since the night my family was murdered has been to bring to justice the man responsible for their deaths. Awake or asleep, my determination to bring down the Torrez Empire is always on my mind. But if I could spare a moment to enjoy myself, I would go for a swim at St. Croix’s Haypenny Beach. The turquoise waters and white sand are like something from a dream. Abuela always says the salt water can cure anything. Too bad it can’t bring down Torrez.

If you could spend the day with someone you admire (living or dead or imaginary), who would you pick?
Hands down, I’d spend the day with my Mom, Dad, and sister, Abigail. Ever since the night they were murdered, I’ve been haunted by the memories of them. What I’d do to see them. I wouldn’t even care about Abigail’s problems for once. I’d just enjoy seeing her. And our parents.

What is your idea of perfect happiness? And, what is your current state of mind?
Perfect happiness would be seeing Victor Torrez arrested and sentenced to spend the rest of his life in prison for all of the deaths he is ultimately responsible for. Until that happens, I am not sure I can find peace…or be completely happy. It drives me, day after day, to keep trying to bust him. I won’t give up until it’s over.

What do you consider to be the most overrated virtue and why? 
Hhmm…maybe tolerance. Is that a virtue? I think tolerating ugly things about the world is almost like ignoring them. I wish my parents hadn’t tolerated the things my sister was doing when she first started running with a bad crowd. Maybe if they had intervened sooner, she might not have become an addict.  Maybe if people didn’t look the other way when Torrez or one of his guys does something illegal, he wouldn’t have become so powerful. 

Tell us 3 things about yourself that the readers do not know about.
Lately, I’ve been undercover, and no one would suspect that:
- I love to read. 
- I actually own clothes, nice ones, without holes in them, and I keep those back in Florida. 
- My lifelong pursuit to bring the Torrez Empire down is wearing me out emotionally and mentally. Still, I can’t let it go. And I feel like I’m close to something big happening. I won’t give up until it’s done. Period.

Read an Excerpt:
Gabe sighed as he glanced over the report again, wishing he could just make her leave the island. Megan was about to be way in over her pretty little head. Everything the DEA had dug up on the two sisters verified that Megan had been completely honest with him at Captain Sully’s. The twins were identical in looks and opposite in behavior. 
The missing twin, Madeline, had never owned anything, never gone to college, never had had a job for more than a few weeks, and a trail of travel receipts since the age of eighteen, revealed she had been all around the world, basically living out of a backpack as she went. Travel records showed a stop now and then back to her sister’s place in Naples, but Madeline never stayed for long. 
The report further revealed the tragic, mountain climbing accident of the twins’ parents when the girls were only eleven-years-old. The parents had left the twins in their paternal grandparents’ care, the MacKennas, six months of the year for their adventure trips. Until the accident, after which the grandparents were granted full custody. The remainder of their youth was spent living in a small farm community outside of Naples in Immokalee, Florida, at the farm their grandparents helped run. Two years earlier, their grandfather had passed away, and Megan had moved Lynn to the retirement home in Naples. 
It was easy for Gabe to conclude, especially after the brief conversation in Captain Sully’s, that Megan had chosen a calculated, rational existence not like the adventuresome nature of her parents, and Madeline had chosen to follow in her parents’ footsteps. Yet this time, her carefree lifestyle had landed her in the company of real bad guys. The kind that killed to protect their lifestyle. If he didn’t get this message across to Megan, she could end up like her twin. Missing. 
And more than likely, dead. Gabe noted Megan’s hotel and room number, then pulling a lighter from his pocket, set the report ablaze. He dropped the burning papers into the street barrel and made a decision. He was going to pay Megan MacKenna a visit. 

About the Author:

Sarah Elle Emm is the author of the HARMONY RUN SERIES, a young-adult fantasy and dystopian series, released in May 2012 by Winter Goose Publishing. (PRISMATIC, May 2012, OPALESCENT, February 2013, CHATOYANT, September 2014, NACREOUS, August 2015) Her debut fiction novel, MARRYING MISSY, was published by Bird Brain Publishing in October 2011. Sarah is a graduate of The University of Evansville, she has lived and worked in Mexico, Germany, England, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and has traveled extensively beyond. Sarah lives in Naples, Florida with her family. When she’s not walking the plank of her daughters’ imaginary pirate ship or snapping photos of Southwest Florida scenery, she is writing.

Stalk the Author:

Website I Facebook I Twitter I Goodreads I Amazon Author Page

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Tuesday, 15 March 2016

The Friendship Affair

The Friendship Affair by Linzé Brandon, blog serial
Not all long lasting marriages are happy. But what do you do if divorce is not an option?

University friends, Stephanie and Nick, meet again after twenty years. But life has not been easy or simple for either of them. Will this friendship affair stand a chance against reality? 


Three hours later she knew they had crossed some boundary from which there was no going back.
Some instinct made her lift up on her elbow to look him in the eye.
There was no smile or teasing glint in their blue depths.
“We just burned a bridge, didn't we?” he asked glancing over her shoulder at the photograph on her bedside table.
She laid back down with her head on his shoulder. There was no point in denying it.
He looked around the room. Earlier they had been too lost in each other for him to pay any attention.
“You live alone.” It was a statement. Again there was no point in arguing. It was obvious from the decoration and layout. One person occupied this bedroom.
He half-shifted, half-rolled to his left and cupped her cheek. “Tell me about him.”
She blinked. “Why?” her voice cracked.
He took her left hand and drew a finger over the wedding rings.
“You are not the kind of woman who would wear these unless you were still married and your husband was alive.”
She pulled her hand away and got up not bothering to find her dressing gown. At her age, she was no longer worried about what a man thought of her naked body. If young women knew how little men cared for perfect legs and perfect breasts, they would be much happier. All three her previous lovers had been younger, and they had been the ones to do the chasing.
He was older, as was her husband. She glanced at the picture. It had been taken just days before he was diagnosed.
She turned back to the window. It overlooked the city. When the sun shone bright, as it did now, you could almost see the end of the world. The apartments were built on a hill, and she had been lucky to find this place.
“I cannot desert him, not like his family did.”

Read Chapters 1 to 7 on Wattpad

Wednesday, 9 March 2016

Book Launch: Mosaics: A Collection of Independent Women Vol 1

Today's the day, all the excitement, all the anticipation, and now it's finally here. And don't forget to enter the mega giveaway, including a Kindle Fire, a $50 gift card, and a paperback library, at the end of this post!
A project focused on bringing women's voices to readers and celebrating the stories they have to tell. Including stories by Keyan BowesCarol CaoChelo Diaz-LuddenSarina DorieNaomi ElsterJordanne FullerAri Harradine​Karen HeulerL.S. Johnson, Tonya LiburdKelsey MakiJulia RayPatty SomloP.K. TylerDeborah WalkerKeira Michelle Telford​Kim WellsElizabeth Wolf, and Sylvia Spruck Wrigley

Mosaics: A Collection of Independent Women Vol 1

Buy Your Copy Now!

Mosaic CoverMosaics: A Collection of Independent Women will inspire and shock you with its multi-faceted look at the history and culture surrounding femininity. If gender is a construct, this anthology is the house it built. Look through its many rooms, some bright and airy, some terrifying- with monsters lurking in the shadows.

Mosaics Volume One features twenty self-identified female authors writing about Intersectionality, including women of color, and members of the disability, trans, and GLB/ GSD* (Gender and Sexual Diversities) communities. We have curated amazing short fiction, flash fiction, poetry, essays, and art. It’s personal, political, and a great read.

This collection includes Hugo Award Nominees, Tiptree Shortlists, Pushcart Prize Winners, USA Today Bestsellers, indie superstars and traditionally published talents alike. The anthology combines leading and new voices all proclaiming their identity as Women, and their ability to Roar.

Buy Your Copy Now!

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Tuesday, 8 March 2016

The Friendship Affair

The Friendship Affair by Linzé Brandon, blog serial
Not all long lasting marriages are happy. But what do you do if divorce is not an option?
University friends, Stephanie and Nick, meet again after twenty years. But life has not been easy or simple for either of them. Will this friendship affair stand a chance against reality?

Dropping the backpack, Stephanie stepped over rocks right up to the edge as far as she dared. Then looked down.
She had to sit. Her mind was incapable of comprehending what she saw.
“Amazing, isn't it?”
Gasping she slipped from the rock holding her hand to her heart.
He had steadied her before she reached the ground.
He sat next to her.
“Sorry, didn't mean to scare you.”
She looked back at the waterfall dropping into the whirlpool below.
“Is this thing for real?”
She had to shout to make herself heard, even though he was sitting with his shoulder touching hers.
He grinned and nodded.
The water was deafening and yet she felt as if she could just sit there. Sit and listen to the forces of nature. Sit and watch the destruction taking place right before her eyes.
She looked up. The tree canopy was dense, and she could hardly make out the cloudy sky between the foliage.
“Where does the water come from and go?”
He got up and helped her to her feet.
He collected her backpack and started back into the direction of the cottage. At least, that was where she thought they were going. Her mobile was in the pack.
“There is an underground river that runs the length of the city.,” he replied once they were away from the noise. “This is the only place where it runs above ground. It is dangerous, and you shouldn't come here alone.”
She frowned at him. “You were alone. Doesn't make it less dangerous to you.”
He stopped and turned around. “You are right, but I grew up here. I know there is a gorge, not visible because of the plants, not far from where you sat, that drops straight down into the water below. If you stepped into that, you would have died.”
She paled. “You are right. I am sorry.”
She looked over her shoulder. From this angle, she could see a rusted metal grid between the rocks on the opposite side.
She pointed at it. “What about that?”
He sighed. “It wears away. Replacing it has become too dangerous and costly.”
“Shouldn't there be warning signs or something?”
He looked grim. “There were. People still ignored them.”
“How many?” she whispered sensing that this place haunted him somehow.
He abruptly turned and started walking again.
Since he didn't use the path she had, she rushed after him.
When they reached the cottage, they had exited the trees not far from she had entered, he kept on walking.
“Please wait.”
He stopped but didn't turn around.
“I am sorry,” she whispered.
She came closer and touched his arm. “Because this place is very personal to you.” She pointed in the direction of the waterfall. “And something happened there to make the memories painful.”
He nodded. “You're right. Three teenage boys ignored the signs and fell into the gorge. Two of the guys working with my dad saw what happened and went after them. They all drowned. The bodies were never found.”
“And they blamed your father?”
He took a deep breath. “Yeah. There was nothing anyone could have done, but the families of the boys blamed my dad because their children did something stupid and died. It was the last time he ever came here.”
She held her tongue and followed him back to her car.
He handed her the pack and watched her put it in the trunk.
“Don't go there again, please.”
She reached up and cupped his cheek. “I won't. You have my word.”
She stepped closer and hugged him as hard as she could. He only hesitated a moment before his arms enclosed her smaller frame.

He stepped back. “You're shivering. Please go home and take a warm shower before you get sick.”
She stepped closer once more and put her hand on his chest. His heart was still racing.
“Come with me.”
He closed his eyes for a long moment. When he looked at her, there was a heat there that had nothing to do with fear. “Are you sure?”

She smiled and stood on tiptoe to give him a soft kiss. “Yes. I am sure.”

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Sunday, 6 March 2016

Linzé's Mischief: 6 March 2016

I have been working through a spreadsheet I keep with a list of all the manuscripts I have written up to now. Unlike the spreadsheet where I keep track of the words I have written for each story, this sheet is about the status of each story. Whether it has been published, if it still has to be edited and where it fits into the series if it is part of one.
I also mark the stories that will never be published. Sometimes you just know it will never work, so canning it is part of moving on. I have no sentimental feelings for any of my stories, as I have read that some authors do, so putting a story on permanent ice has no impact on me, except maybe irritation that I wasted so much time writing it before realising it is never going to work.
According to my list I have written, or am in the process of writing, 90 manuscripts. Of these 7 has been iced, 15 have been published on various platforms and 14 are ready to be edited. I don't like editing much, so am a bit lazy when that final step arrives before sending it to a professional editor. Once the editor has worked through it though, I am super quick to get the changes made and get it ready for publication. I am just weird, I think.
So that leaves another 53 manuscripts in various stages of completion, some of which are so close as 90% done. There is a scene or two needed, usually in the middle or at the end before the first draft is done.
It is this list that I have been contemplating for Camp NaNoWriMo coming in April. Three, maybe four, stories to finish before moving on to the next.
With project JOURNEY going to need more and more of my time during the second half of this year, I have decided to do as much now as I can and then re-evaluate the status of my projects later in the year.
I need to re-assess some other things in my life too, but for now they have to wait for about three weeks until things at work calm down to their normal pressure level as opposed to the stress of the looming financial year-end.

Remember to be back on Tuesday for the next chapter of the Friendship Affair.

Tuesday, 1 March 2016

The Friendship Affair

The Friendship Affair by Linzé Brandon, blog serial
Not all long lasting marriages are happy. But what do you do if divorce is not an option?
University friends, Stephanie and Nick, meet again after twenty years. But life has not been easy or simple for either of them. Will this friendship affair stand a chance against reality? 
With her chores and shopping done for the week, Stephanie felt that the walls of the apartment were about ready to crush her. She missed the space and the garden of the house, but she couldn't afford to stay there with all the bills.
Medical insurance covered Frederick's care in the centre, but while he was still being treated at the initial stages of the illness, there were a lot of expenses.
At least, she had gotten a good enough price on the house, to get rid of all those debts.
She grabbed her keys. She had to get out.
It had finally started raining, relieving some of the oppressive heat of the past few days. It was still drizzling, but she didn't mind as the car almost drove itself to the fairy garden.
Since the locals didn't want the place advertised, there was no parking in the direct vicinity. She drove to the coffee shop and left the car there.
Flipping open her umbrella, she adjusted the small backpack she bought in the week. It was a pleasant walk, and she was hopeful of a quiet stroll because of the weather.
She wasn't disappointed at all.
The garden smelled fresher and even looked greener with the rain. At the fifth bench, she turned off the main path and changed direction towards the cottage.
It was still there.
He had told her the building wasn't safe to enter, so she stayed outside looking into the windows wondering who had lived there.
“How on earth can you keep a secret like this?” she mused when reaching the back of the cottage. From here the rot was more visible, and she understood his warning. There was another path leading away from the cottage.
Activating the recording function on the navigation app on her mobile phone, just in case she got lost, Stephanie stepped into the unknown.

In this part of the park, the trees and plants were so dense that the umbrella was a hindrance more than an aid. She stopped and shook out the water as best she could, before putting it in a side pocket of the backpack designed for the umbrella.
It was still drizzling, but she decided it wasn't worth fussing about as she started walking again.
Unlike the footpaths in the public spaces of the park, here it was paved with stones and more uneven.
“Good thing, my hiking boots still fit,” she muttered as she pushed yet another branch out of the way.
Was that a river?
She knew the city had a river or two still flowing, but she had never heard of one in this part. Maybe it was a water channel left over from the days when this was still farmland.
Intrigued she kept going. The louder the noise, the more careful she stepped.
Quickly checking that her mobile phone was still operational, she continued.
Stepping into a small clearing, she stopped and gasped aloud.

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The CreativeLife in review - planning, time management, and the creative life

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