Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss
Sandi Shilhanek | When Do You Read?
Sundays with Sandi / March 22, 2009

Are your real life friends like some of mine and amazed at how much you’re able to read? Do they look at you differently because you’re a reader? How often have they said how do you find time to read? Since you read this blog I’m going to make the assumption that you’re like me and consider yourself to be a dedicated reader. That means you make the time to read anywhere and everywhere! I’m hopeful that many of are like me and household chores are often left undone because of the need to read that one last chapter. I have to know where you think the most unusual place you’ve been caught reading is. Before I started audio books I would read in my car at red lights, during football games or at whatever sporting event my children might have been practicing for. Now I can be found sneaking pages at the bowling center or even during slow times at work. The only place I won’t be found reading is in the bath, as I’m not a bath person at all, and they haven’t (well to the best of my knowledge) found a way to waterproof my book while…

Sara Reyes | What I learned at SXSW
Guests / March 21, 2009

Broken Lizzard and GwenOriginally uploaded by freshfiction First off, SXSW to the uninitiated is South By Southwest, referred to as “SXSW” or “South By“. It is a HUGE (with hundreds of thousands of people, maybe a million or two, who knows) festival in Austin. Texas over spring break. It started 23 years ago with music, expanded to film and then a few years ago added interactive. So, you’ve got the music geeks, the film geeks and the nerds all descending on a city for 13 days or so. I’ve been going since 2005 and it is something NOT-TO-MISS in your lifetime. In fact I’m sure it’s in a few 100 or 1000 things to do before you die lists. My interest is the interactive — all about the Internet or the Web 2.0. They’ve been talking the Web 2.0 since 2005. I wonder if we’ll ever get to the Web 3.0 or they’ll just call it something else. I was there when Twitter first was introduced. Lots of chatter about “taking a shower,” “I’m in the elevator,” “meet you at the beer tent” and stuff like that. Fascinating, no? Also went on to MySpace and Facebook because of SXSW trips….

Uncategorized / March 20, 2009

What I love about roller coasters is that rush of exhilaration that comes after a long climb up a hill and a breathtaking few seconds of hovering at the top of a towering peak. Then whoosh! It sweeps sharply downward, taking its passengers with it, completely at the mercy of forces beyond their control. As many before me have said, life is like that, except that the ride downhill is no fun at all. This hit home three years ago, when a nasty virus attacked the nerves in my neck and back, causing headaches, nausea, muscle spasms, numbness, lost of taste and tears, hypersensitive sense of smell, and even an inflamed scalp. Worst of all was that my deadline was coming up fast. Having hit the bottom of that roller coaster ride, I had to come to terms with a sudden inability to do the simplest things — smell the aroma of coffee first thing in the morning, read a book, or even sit at the computer to work on the next chapter in my mystery. Instead, all my energy went into not moving so I didn’t bring on more pain. My world narrowed to my house, then to my…

Tara Taylor Quinn | A Ninth and a First
Uncategorized / March 19, 2009

The first, first. Last week delivered to my door, in five boxes, were my copies of my first, first printing hardcover. It’s not wholly mine. It’s an anthology of work by five authors. But my name is on the cover. My story is inside. I’ve had two other books in hardcover. One was a foreign edition. The other was a subsidiary sale to Thorndike Press who prints mostly for libraries. Both were cool. This is cooler. The book, More Than Words Volume 5 is due out in April. Heather Graham, a woman I’ve known and admired for years, is the headliner. I’m honored to be in the volume with her. Even more meaningful than being out in Hardcover, or being published with Heather, is having been a part of the work itself. More Than Words is a project that Harlequin started several years ago. Throughout the year, the company solicits applications from private women’s charities. Five are chosen. Each of the five authors, who are hand chosen by the publisher, are given one of the charities. I was given Sandra Ramos, founder of Strengthen our Sisters. Sandra founded the very first battered women’s shelter in the United States. She’s an…

Linda Thomas-Sundstrom | Loving the Supernatural… and Barbie.
Uncategorized / March 18, 2009

Whether spooky, creepy, fangy, funny, or just plain whacked-out, I love the supernatural. And I’m a “paranormal” writer, through and through. No matter how hard I try to write a straight novel or romance, it turns south toward that big “P.” It’s just something in my blood, I guess. Thing is, though, I have both dark and light sides to my supernatural-loving personality. So after writing a dark historical vampire tale for Kensington Brava’s Immortal Bad Boys anthology, something odd happened one day as I sat in my little home office contemplating the plot line next dark tale. I stared at the shelf displaying my original Barbie doll, and a big question appeared to plague me, as those pesky questions sometimes do. The question was this: Click to read the rest of the blog. Visit to learn more about books and authors.

David Rollins | I, prescient.
Uncategorized / March 17, 2009

Hi there, What can I tell you about my latest book, A Knife Edge, that you won’t get from reading it? When I was writing the book in 2004-05, the conflict in Afghanistan was well and truly on the back burner. The US military was heavily engaged in Iraq and the ‘gan had receded from the public consciousness. There were a few hot battles, like the one at Tora Bora, after which everyone seemed to pack up and go home. History told me the Taliban was too easily pacified and that, like a virus, they would come back stronger. A Knife Edge was written with this view in mind. If the West had to go back into that country again, I wondered, would the gloves come off? Would we launch cross-border attacks into Pakistan territory? And if the political situation in Islamabad went pear-shaped, what sort of government could take power there? Click to read the rest of David’s blog and to comment. Visit to learn more about books and authors.

Kimberly Frost | When In the World Would You Go?
Uncategorized / March 16, 2009

I’d imagine that I’m like a lot of readers in that I love the way that fiction transports me to different times and places…to different worlds where the laws of physics and nature need not apply or where the laws of “good society” do. Regency England and the Scottish Highlands. Sunnydale and Salem. Hogwarts, Narnia, and Middle Earth… When I began the Southern Witch series, I knew that I wanted a small town setting with eccentric, charming characters, but I also realized that since the series contains magic, I could incorporate other elements. Here’s a brief exchange from Book 1 between Tammy Jo Trask, small-town girl and Would-Be Witch, with the family ghost, Edie: * * * Click here to read the rest of the blog and enter for a chance to win a copy of WOULD-BE WITCH. Visit to learn more about books and authors.

Sandi Shilhanek | To Finish or Not Finish?
Sundays with Sandi / March 15, 2009

Last year I did something I haven’t done in about 20 years. I set aside a book unfinished. This week I have been attempting to read another book by a different author, and am not very far into it, and am finding myself looking for chores that need doing rather than be lazing the day away reading. While I feel guilty if I don’t finish this book I also feel horrid about all the books waiting so patiently for me to finally read my way to them. This leads to the subject of whether or not to finish the book that is going slowly, or to continue to persevere. What would you do? Would you continue on with the book that isn’t working for you or move on? If you stopped the book would you set it back on the shelf or would you give it to someone else to hopefully enjoy? As for me I’m going to move on to a new book, and will keep this book in my stack because it’s on my Kindle, so it’s not taking up any space. Hopefully it’s my mood and some day this book will be right for me. Until next…

Dianne Emley | Ten Commandments of Fiction Writing
Uncategorized / March 13, 2009

Thank you, Fresh Fiction for inviting me to blog today! I’m Dianne Emley, author of the L.A. Times bestselling Detective Nan Vining “thrillogy”: THE FIRST CUT, CUT TO THE QUICK, and, just out, THE DEEPEST CUT. These three are a thrillogy because they have an overarching storyline in which Nan Vining obsessively pursues the man who attacked her and left her for dead, the creep who Vining and her teenage daughter call T.B. Mann—The Bad Man. The Nan Vining series continues! I’m working on the fourth which will be out in 2010. I’ve learned a lot about the art and business of writing since the first book hit the shelves. I’ve become not just smarter, but wiser. I’ve developed a few rules that I strive to follow when I’m writing and editing a book and some that govern my behavior when the book is out. I’d like to share these with you. Herewith: Dianne Emley’s Ten Commandments of Fiction Writing1. I shall heed good editorial advice, shun bad advice, and learn how to tell the difference. Click to read the rest of Dianne’s Commandments! Visit to learn more about books and authors.

Jessica Inclan | A Window Seat of Light
Uncategorized / March 12, 2009

When I was in college, I found myself sitting in the grove of trees by the classroom building with a friend.  We’d just left our class on Ibsen, Strindberg, and Mann, and we weren’t very happy.  How could we have been?  In Ibsen’s Ghosts, Oswald was just crying out for “the sun,” and so were we.  The sun hadn’t been out for a month, the dank Tulle fog all around us like, well, dank Tulle fog. It was there that my friend proceeded to tell me a story that almost made me jump out of my skin.  She must have needed to tell me, letting me into the dark side of her life, a life that maybe had only a window seat of light in it.  I was 22-years-old and hadn’t heard much at that point, sheltered in mostly good ways.  In later years, I tried to write about my reaction to her story in poetry, essay, and short story, until the writer Grace Paley told me that I wasn’t able to write about it because it wasn’t my story. Buy INTIMATE BEINGS “It’s hers to tell,” she said, so I never tried again. And the fact is, by the…