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text 2018-03-15 19:38
Reading progress update: I've read 53%.
Saving Sebastian - Luna David

“Look, I don’t know what’s going on with you. But from what I could see through the window, that wasn’t you. That’s not the older brother I’ve looked up to all my life. You crushed that boy. God, the love he had for you.” He shook his head again. “Every time your name was mentioned his face would light up. If you didn’t see it, you were blind, brother.”


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text 2018-03-14 11:00
Facts About Me: Interview

What can you tell me about yourself?

I'm an author and reader equally, because I'm a firm believer in that you can't be an author if you don't read. I always find that I'm inspired by the most surprising things, so I love to keep all avenues open, when it comes to being creative.

I'm a geek, with a fandom and book obsession and a mild collector's problem. I am not a hoarder, though I'm pretty sure I would be if I had the money to afford it. Books don't count.

I've got an addiction personality, so when I write then I usually write a lot. When I edit, I edit a few books in a row and, similarly, when I read, I tend to read for about two weeks straight. It's the way I function; I get in the mood for something and just keep following that mood until it breaks.


Where do you see yourself five years from now?

Hopefully still writing. Maybe a little fitter and slimmer? That would be great. Being disabled means that it's hard to beat the medication-induced weight, and being a writer who sits for 90% of my day really doesn't help. I'm trying to break some bad habits this year, so my hope is that they're completely broken 5 years from now. I should, at least, have made a decent headway into getting more books published and more books off my TBR. Right now, like every other day, reading and writing is my main priority.


What are you working on at the minute?

I've got a lot of projects on the go, right now, but I'm currently writing (what I think is) a really cute story about a male nanny. It's called Unmasked and it's 18+. It's all about Bennett, who is out of work and takes a recommendation to become a nanny, since he has the interest and the academic credits to do it. What he doesn't expect is for the father interviewing him to be the same man he had a one night stand with just a short time before. The ensuing chaos has been really fun to write, since I don't really add kids to my 18+ stories that much. They've certainly made it far more interesting.


Do you let the book stew – leave it for a month and then come back to it to edit?

I'm a weird writer. I don't seem to fit any of the stereotypes or 'styles' that others do. After a book is completed, I let it sit for a few weeks or months then come back to edit it, then leave it for a few more months before editing it again and again and again. I like to do about 10 edits before I submit it to any publishers, just because I know I struggle with editing and want it to be perfect. But when it comes to writing a book, there are times when I hit a block and reading back what I've already written is the only way to keep going, but there are also times when I zip straight through from page one to The End without stopping and don't edit it for months. I especially like to do this if I'm going to be writing a series one after the other. Then I'll stop at the end or when I get stuck, to go back and refresh what's happened before.


For your own reading, do you prefer e-books or traditional paper/hard back books?

Definitely e-books. I have weak muscles and nerves in my hands/wrists/arms, so holding a paperback or hardback can be far too painful to do it too often. I'm a sucker for a good bargain, though, so if I can get a paperback or hardback cheaper than the e-book, to suit my budget, I'll definitely not hesitate to buy it. It just means that I have to plan my reading of that book for when I know I won't be doing much else.


Pen or typewriter or computer?

Oh God! Computer! Definitely. For the same reasons as above, a pen or typewriter would kill me! Sometimes a laptop is just as bad, but I've really fallen in love with my new one, the Samsung Tab Pro S. It's smaller than I'm used to, but that means the keys are a little closer together, leaving me to do much less stretching across the board to reach the keys I want. Even if I keep missing the 'k' for no reason I can fathom.


Do you write Alone or in public?

Alone. I can write with just one or two people in the room, but it generally has to be really quite for me to work. I don't like music or noise when I'm writing, since I usually end up distracted and sing along more than I write. In the right atmosphere – my comfy chair, feet up, food/drink nearby, the dog settled, no noise and alone in the house – I can get chapters and chapters written in a day. Or spend it on Facebook. Either way, it's how I function best.


Goals of certain # of words a week or when inspiration strikes?

Oh, nope. I could never constrict myself to a set number of words. It would drive me insane. Although I plan the vague outline of my plot – the who, the why, the how and the when – as well as a few specific conversations/events I want to happen, I'm a pantser. I can either write thousands of words a day or two sentences. Either way, I believe in following the muse and never putting shackles on her. I would either be constantly kicking myself for not meeting a deadline word count or I'd get too confident about over-reaching it.




Elaine White is the author of multi-genre romance, covering everything from paranormal, crime and contemporary. Growing up in a small town and fighting cancer in her early teens taught her that life is short and dreams should be pursued. Living vicariously through her independent, and often hellion characters, she lives comfortably at home with a pack of wolves cleverly disguised as one standard poodle.

The Winner of two Watty Awards – Collector's Dream (An Unpredictable Life) and Hidden Gem (Faithfully) – and an Honourable Mention in 2016's Rainbow Awards (A Royal Craving) she has explored the worlds of multiple genres but remains a romantic at heart. A self-professed geek, Elaine has fallen in love with reading and writing LGBT romance, offering diversity in both genre and character within her stories.


You can keep in touch with Elaine on the following sites:


Facebook Goodreads Website

Wattpad Blog Twitter

Pinterest YouTube Tumblr




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text 2018-03-14 07:13
7 Tips for Writing an Essay

Is writing an esay impossible task for you? Firstly, you should identify the type of an essay for which you must write content. Essays come in all times ranging from for and agnist essays, cause and effect essays to problems and solutions essays. Each essay type comes with a different style and writing technique, and at the same time, different essays have a common feauture and one writing scheme. Following 7 tips can help you produce an original essay or Coursework Assistance:


Coursework Camp


  1. In the first place, you should identify the essay type that you are required to write. You must recognize the style, the structure, and the linking words that you need to pursue for your essay type. You should make a scheme for an essay and follow it when you are writing an essay.


  1. You should take some time and brainstorm for ideas that you want to utilize in your piece of writing. You must make notes of ideas, words, and phrases that come to your mind.


  1. You should group all of your ideas that you have come up with in a logical order. You should eradicate ideas that are irrelevant to your essay topic.


  1. You must put your ideas in a separate paragraph; this will make the layout for your essay. An essay layout is comprised of introduction, body, and conclusion. You need a short paragraph in the beginning of an essay, and that will be your introduction. An introduction should be created in a way that attract readers. Body of an essay is comprised of two to five paragraphs. In conclusion, you should be succinct while giving your point of view.



  1. You should adopt a proper writing technique to make sure that you get A for all of your efforts. Technique that you choose should make your essay interesting for the readers. You should think how to start your essay, develop your ideas, and make a cheerful end to it. Do not make use of rhetorical questions if you are writing a formal essay.


  1. You should not use difficult words in your essay if you are able to link words and phrases in your essay. An essay must be easy for readers to understand. You can use a variety of adjectives, verbs, and adverbs to make your essay look interesting for the readers.


You should know how to edit an essay. Proofreading will help you eliminate grammatical and spelling mistakes in your essay. You can also take help of a friend or family member to proofread an essay for you.

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text 2018-03-03 03:05
It doesn't have to be a mansion

When I wrote The Looking-Glass Portrait, I knew exactly what the inspiration was: the house.  I detailed the background here via a link to my blog here.  The story kind of came to me separately -- and remember, it started 20+ years before it ended -- but the house was the focus when I structured the plot.


This certainly is no great revelation: the gothic genre began with The Castle of Otranto, so the tradition has been there from the beginning.  As we've seen here on BookLikes with buddy reads of Jamaica Inn and Ammie, Come Home, houses and other dwelling places continue to be integral to the genre.  There are ghosts, but they are connected to houses. 


Sometimes the houses end up destroyed, as happened to Manderley, in Rebecca.  But even then, even in its destruction, Manderley exercised its power over the second Mrs. de Winter.


The house in Edison Park, Illinois that served as the model for LGP, is still there.  Another house I'd love to put into a gothic romance is long gone.  I was told it, like Manderley, burned to the ground 25 or more years ago.


My paternal grandparents also lived in Edison Park, but they moved from there to Roselle, Illinois, a western suburb in DuPage County, in the very early 1950s.  So early in the 1950s that I have no real memories of their home on Owen Avenue at all.  They lived in Roselle until 1966, however, so I have clear recollections of that house.


The original house was small, just one bedroom, one bath, kitchen, and a big living/dining room.  The latter had an open, beamed ceiling.   



There was a big open covered porch, and another closed-in porch that led to the dining room.  French doors opened from the single bedroom onto the porch, too.


I don't remember the front door at all.



Shortly after moving into the house, my grandparents began installing a fireplace, a mammoth fieldstone structure that replaced the front door.  My dad, my grandfather, and my dad's cousin Bob built the fireplace, cementing stones from the yard of the 2-acre property in place.


When the fireplace was finished, my grandmother hung Bells of Sarna from the huge wooden mantel.  I loved those bells; I would be allowed to jingle them once or twice each time we visited.  I have no idea what happened to them, but years ago I purchased a strand of my own.  They hang in my living room now.


I don't have many photos of the interior of the house, and the few I have of the exterior are from my grandparents' earliest occupancy.  Along with the fireplace, they built a larger addition on the east end of the house with two large bedrooms, a shower bath, basement and attic.  I "borrowed" the pull-down stairs to the attic for LGP, since the Edison Park house didn't have any.




The house sat at the top of a low hill, with a long, winding gravel driveway down to the road, Forest Avenue.



I loved the trees, mostly oaks and shagbark hickories.  There was one crabapple tree.  The old horse-drawn plow was rusted and stuck in the hard clay ground, but I thought it was fabulous, a romantic relic.


Though I can't find it in these photos, there was a huge pink granite boulder somewhere in the yard.  It was absolutely enormous, to my two- or three-year-old self.  Best of all, however, it had a "saddle" on the top, a naturally broken out dip that was perfect for a little girl of the suburbs to imagine, there in that big open yard, that she had a horse.


There were other people in the neighborhood who did have horses, though I didn't see them often.  Years later, when I was in high school and bored with being around the family members, I'd go for long walks to catch a glimpse of a horse here or there, or to visit the dogs at the two collie kennels a street or two over.  One of the fences keeping the dogs in bore a sign identifying the owners as The Pettigrews.  Yeah, I stole the name, too.


But that big pink rock was so special.  As I grew up, I was eventually able to climb onto it myself, and then even jump over it.  Yet in my memory it remained gigantic.


I'm not sure when it was, but I was visiting the family years ago and decided to take a drive out to Roselle to see the place.  My dad had told me the house had burned down, but I still wanted to go out there.  It was winter; there was snow on the ground, I remember that much.  And there was a new house at the top of the hill. But at the bottom of the driveway, half covered by snow plowed off the road, was the big pink rock.


And it was so, so, so much smaller than I remembered!


A couple of years ago, while I was doing the online research of old family houses, I swooped down on a Google Maps street view and went digitally driving down Forest Avenue to see what I could see.



Is that the big pink rock?  Or what's left of it?  I don't know.  But I like to think it is.



P.S.  When my grandparents sold the house in 1966, the following ad appeared in the local newspaper:


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review 2018-02-21 19:23
Needs more attention to detail
Kid Authors: True Tales of Childhood from Famous Writers (Kid Legends) - David Stabler,Doogie Horner

First of all, HUGE props to the illustrator, Doogie Horner, for some of the most amazing illustrations I've seen in quite some time. I'd go so far as to say they would make truly excellent bookmarks. *hint hint* Kid Authors: True Tales of Childhood from Famous Writers by David Stabler is a collection of short biographies of famous authors covering their childhood and why they wanted to become authors. Up front I need to make a few critical remarks. While this was written for a child audience, I think it would be beneficial if some of the terms were defined either in a side panel or at the back in a glossary. Two good examples: integration and abolitionist. I read a few passages to some of the kids at the library and some terms that seem obvious to an adult haven't yet been learned by kids in upper elementary school. There were also some really glaring grammatical mistakes which gave the impression this was a rushed printing job. At one point, the word should have been 'real' and instead it was 'read' which of course has a totally different meaning. If this is meant to be a nonfiction biographical resource for children it should be held to a higher standard. I did like how there were additional facts and a suggested list of more books to read at the back. My overall impression is that it's a cute book which serves as a decent introduction for kids to famous authors (and biographies in general). I know there are other books in this series so I'm hopeful the quality has improved in these later volumes. :-) 5/10


What's Up Next: Weird Things Customers Say in Bookstores by Jen Campbell


What I'm Currently Reading: Gorillas in the Mist by Dian Fossey

Source: readingfortheheckofit.blogspot.com
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