Hi! My name is Nikkie! I'm an avid reader. I'm also a gamer. I enjoy coloring and photography as well. This blog is meant to take you on my journey of life. It will mainly be about books I've read, but I'll have other things posted too. I hope you enjoy!
So I completely messed up on this one. I made a mental list, but I never really wrote one down. I also never reached out to the authors to make sure I could get their info to do spotlights on. I don’t want to just not post anything. So this week, I’ll make a list of the authors I want to start with. This is just off the top of my head. I am in no way stating that these authors are more important than others. I’m also not stating that any author not on this list doesn’t belong. With that being said, here’s the list:
Kate L. Mary
I’m going to reach out to these authors. I’m also going to try to reach out to other authors. If you’re seeing this and you’re an author who wants to participate, please reach out to me. Comment on this post or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Things they would like the readers to know about them. How they got started writing. What their passions are. Whatever they want. Can be done in letter format, article format, or however you wish to do it.
Preferably links that lead to them so that the readers can follow them.
So, this week is going to be a writing prompt. I have rescheduled with the author who was on for this week. We have both been very busy and today completely came up onus fast! You’re in for a real treat when you do see her excerpt!
Full disclosure: As I stated before, today completely snuck up on me. I’m using a prompt I wrote a year or longer ago. There is a chance I already posted it, but I’m not sure. If I did, I’m reposting. If I didn’t, here you go! Either way, please enjoy!
I knew that I was being hunted. I had known for quite some time. The only thing I didn’t know is if it was my entire team that was in danger or just me. It took a few weeks, but I finally had a plan hatched. I was going to draw the threat out.
My plan was to hire two people to sit at a restaurant and chat about their work. One will be pretending to be me. Figuring out who to hire was the hard part. I didn’t know who I could get on such short notice that would pull off such a ruse.
Then it hit me. Prostitutes. I knew they were good at adapting to whatever their clients needed. It just so happened that I knew of a website that specialized in that area. They targeted a more secret society so to speak. I only knew of the website because I helped start it.
Once the plan was in motion, I quickly found two people who I thought would be ideal for the job. The female looked so much like me it was uncanny. Her name on the website was listed as Zara. The male looked like somebody I used to know. For all I know, it could have been him. His name was listed as Skyler.
I reached out to both of them via chat and told them the details. They both thought that they were informants to a reporter about a bank job gone wrong. They thought they were there to get inside information about the incident by pretending to work at the same bank. Neither of them knew that the other was being hired. Zara was being paid extra to say her name was Amber. They didn’t need to know anything else.
Once they agreed and were paid, I made reservations at a favorite restaurant of mine and sent them the information for their table. I had made a reservation for myself as well. I put myself across the restaurant, but still had a good view of the two. I would be able to see their interaction and who came near them. The microphone that I planned to plant before they got there would ensure that I would be able to hear everything.
Getting through the rest of the week was hard. I somehow managed. Before I knew it, it was time to head to my reservation. I informed the owner ahead of time so I could be allowed to access the table and plant my device. I was seated and out of sight before they even got there.
The first thing Zara did was order the most expensive wine on the menu. I figured she would. I’ve been doing homework on the two. Shortly after she ordered, Skyler showed up. I pretended to cough so that I could put the earpiece on without being two obvious.
“What a lovely night,” Skyler mused
“It is, indeed. How was your day at work?”
“Oh, you know. The usual. People deposit money. People take money out. Not much else,” he shrugged.
“Oh come on. You and I both know that just isn’t true.”
“What do you mean?”
“How about that thing that happened at the Brown branch last month?”
“I don’t know anything about that. What about you?” He said gazing into her eyes.
“I was hoping that you could fill me in.”
“Hello sir and m’aam. I am happy you joined us tonight. What can I start you out with? A drink? Appetizers? Would you like to hear the specials?”
My head snapped up at the voice. I knew that voice, and I knew her. Suddenly, I knew everything I needed to know.
Can’t say this was a terrible week for coloring. I also can’t say it was the best either. I really do want to get back into the habit of coloring often. I’d like to color at least one thing a day, but I’ll be happy to get in a couple days a week. I also got me a tote to put my coloring books and mediums in. As I buy coloring books and mediums and as I find the ones I already had, I’ll be putting them in there so I have them all in one place for easy access. Here’s the wish list that I created:
Urgent intel warns of terrorist cells planning coordinated attacks throughout Europe. Special Agent Jacob Coulter of Brussels Interpol is assigned to find the terrorist financiers supporting these groups and shut down their funding operations.
An opera singer’s life and career hang in the balance.
The Queen of the Night’s vocal pyrotechnics have launched many a soprano’s international career. But Riley Williams, Jacob’s fiancée, is terrified of heights, and her Antwerp Opera debut as the evil queen requires her to sing from a hydraulic lift forty feet above the orchestra pit. When newspapers cite Riley’s recent unmasking of an international terrorist plot and the lift malfunctions, Jacob suspects terrorist sabotage.
He encourages Riley to accept her BFF’s invitation to stay the Savoy Hotel in London where she’ll be out of danger. Or so he thinks …
A series of murders connected to a notorious terrorist financier known as the Priest leads Jacob across Europe. When the victims’ deaths point to London, his Interpol partner convinces him London is a haven for terrorist financiers.
But the clock is ticking, and what Jacob uncovers is more devastating than anything he could have imagined.
I didn’t make any notes this week. I kind of really didn’t put full attention into the game this week. I popped on and got the markets when they were available for the most part. I took care of problems here and there. I know a few children grew up and a few children were born. I know that my apartment was upgraded to the max upgrade. Hopefully, I’ll put more focus and energy on it this week.
Now to talk about IMVU. This game has consumed me this past week. I’ve been consumed with RP family drama. Which I think I wound up making many huge mistakes. I’ve met some interesting people there for sure. I’ve also been creating a lot more lately. It started with me editing rooms I’ve made in the past, but it evolved into me making new products. I even have somebody who has become a huge fan of my shop. It is really humbling. Either way, I’m glad I came back!
Here are some of my most recent creations on IMVU. I’m still waiting on quite a few to be published. Maybe I’ll get lucky and get a job with IMVU! HAHA! Who knows?
I had to restart this a few times and slow down the speed on my audiobook. Once I did that and got into the story, I was able to get adjusted to it more. It’s not that it’s a bad book. It just went over my head a bit at first.
Blurb (Directly from Amazon):
Fairytale meets feminism in Luci Adams’s Not That Kind of Ever After, a frothy adventure of one woman’s journey to claim happily ever after in times of serial dating, swiping right, and the quest to find your soulmate.
Bella Marble’s life isn’t what she imagined. Instead of an author, she’s a receptionist at a small press. Instead of happily married, she’s single, and her lovey-dovey parents are divorcing. And to top it off, her best friend of twenty-nine years, Ellie Mathews, is moving out and marrying the heinously boring Mark. (He’s not worthy of her. No one could be). Bella feels rudderless, only slightly soothed by time spent with Ellie’s (not hot) brother, (he’s not hot) Marty (okay, he’s hot. But he’s also the aggravating brother she never had—right)?
When Marty recommends Bella stop looking for “the one” and just have fun, Bella finds a new, empowered side of herself. But when she posts a fairy-tale retelling of a disastrous one night stand on a storytelling app, all of a sudden, Bella has become @B.Enchanted. And she’s gone viral.
Now, Bella’s in a fight with Ellie, her new roommates are so, deeply, weird, and the pressure is mounting to find new fairy tales to write about—but she’s got to live them first.
“As side splittingly hilarious as it is empowering and emotional, Not That Kind of Ever After is a sparkling debut.”–Helena Hunting, bestselling author
I can’t say this was a bad week really. I also can’t say it was a great week either. At least reading wise. I actually had a pretty wonderful week. I’ve gotten to experience some wonderful things. I’ll even be going to see an early release movie tomorrow! I basically wound up watching more television than reading this week. Normally I’d beat myself up over it, but I think I needed to get my mind off things.
Today, I have the honor of spotlighting one of my favorite authors and dearest friends. I can proudly say that I knew this beautiful woman before she published her first book. She has so much talent and she’s so talented in so many ways. Having her in your life is a true blessing. Without further ado, our author this week is:
A special message from R.K. Phillips:
Hi everyone! I am RK Phillips. First let me thank Nicole for allowing me to be spotlighted on her blog and thank you for taking the time to read it. I am going to share a little about me, how I got into writing and self publishing, and some about my stories.
When people are asked how I got into writing, it kind of depends on what they mean exactly. I think it really started in high school English class when we were being taught different types of poetry and then having to write it ourselves. From there on and for many years that is what I wrote and it was a way of expressing myself. However, in the early 2000s a few of my friends and I started writing together more like role playing stories. We each had our own characters and would weave stories together. I won’t date myself and tell you where we wrote these stories. I will say though that one day I am hoping to give two of those characters their own book.
Fast forward a bit and I am in college in my late 20s. While I am taking my accounting courses I decide to sign up for a creative writing class as an elective. One class turned into three and had me thinking about things. It was because of those classes I even had the beginning building blocks for what I would need later. However, it wasn’t for another almost five years that I would even think about writing a book. However, I did get involved in another role play writing group where I met some great people that I now call friends.
I am going to pause here to say, if there is something you want to do or try because it interests you (and it is legal) then do it. Life is scary and there are so many unknowns, but sometimes what you find on the other side is worth it. If you don’t want to do it alone at first, find someone to do it with you.
This is how it was with my writing along with many other things in my life. No one ever told me, you should write a book, you would be great at it. I was told in my writing class I was great at writing details. I had people question certain things and others defend what I wrote. But, I didn’t have a cheerleader telling me I should do this.
Take chances and embrace who you are. Why am I talking about this when this is supposed to be an author spotlight? Because ultimately that is how I came about writing my first novel. I won’t go into details, but really what it came down to is a couple of things. One, I wanted to prove to myself that I could write a full novel beginning to end. Up until then I only had written poetry and short stories. Second, I wanted a character that was a nerdy math girl. At the time I wanted a character that was a little more like me. I love math and feel there is nothing wrong with that. Since I couldn’t get it from anyone else, I decided to write the story.
This is how Peyton was born. Originally I played with the idea of giving her a few different professions, but ultimately when I started writing, she became a professor of mathematics. From the beginning I fell in love with her and her story. I decided that if I was going to finally get my nerdy math girl story I was going to play it up. She was born on March 14th which is Pi day. Her nickname became Pi. I even ended up releasing the novel, The Complications of Pi, on March 14th. While writing this book, a lot of things happened and changed in my life. I will save you from the details, but this book was a bit of light hearted release and love I had during all of that. I would do writing sprints with a friend in the evenings after work because at the time, I didn’t have cable or internet, so I just focused on writing and getting my apartment organized. We would set up a time for 20-30 minutes, write and then text each other with how many words we had written. Then, and still now, she is a much faster writer than I am. However, it helped to push both of us to continue to make progress on what we were working on.
I remember when I finished the first draft of The Complications of Pi. I felt so happy and excited that I had done it. I had completed my first novel. Still to this day, I think I was prouder and more elated in that moment than even when it went live. It took me less than a year to write the first draft, but still just over another year to publish it (partly because by the time it was good to go, I had decided to wait until 03/14 to publish it).
I was a fish out of water when it came to what was next. However, I had many friends that encouraged and walked me through the steps. I did revisions on the book, had it edited, and worked with a fabulous cover artist, Anya Kelleye, that gave me what I wanted. All this time and money was spent and it was all ready to go to be published. Still I warred with myself on if I really wanted to publish it. It wasn’t a book that was like anything else out there that I had seen. Not only did it feature my clumsy, math loving Peyton, but it was what people now call a sapphic romance. When I set out writing this book, there weren’t as many books like this out there because I looked for them. In just a few short years you can find them all over the place. There were authors that wrote these types and I read them, but they were harder to find and you had to weed through lots of bad stuff to find them.
Thus, I debated on putting this out there. Finally I decided that if one or two that were not close friends of mine bought and enjoyed the book, it would be worth it. So, I went ahead and published the book. I had a small release party online and embraced my nerd side with this book. I would love to say it was an overnight sensation, but let’s be real, it wasn’t going to be. However, I did have more than just the two people who bought and read my book. I was so happy and surprised. That book was supposed to be a stand alone book and that is it. But, several people asked me when I was going to write the next one. That I needed to give Damien (Peyton’s brother) his story. One day I hope I get that chance. However, I moved on to two other projects that I had in my mind.
I was writing two different novels at the same time and making progress on them both. I thought I could finish one by a certain time, but I hit a huge writing block and didn’t make progress on either. Finally, I wanted to hit a specific timeline goal and focused all my attention on what is now Nature’s Strike. This story came about from a dream I had when I was a teenager and over the years I thought about it and changed it into an idea for a series until eventually it became what it is now. Again, here I was trying to take on something new and different for me. Why I couldn’t just write the same kind of book I just published I have no idea. I like a variety of types of books and so my writing interests follow that path. This time, I was out to write a book that combined romance, action and adventure, and some light fantasy elements. Nature’s Strike introduced you to Riley and her family who are your everyday people working at jobs they like in a smaller community and living their lives happily. Then on the other side you get to meet Declan and his team that are out saving people from evil people intent on causing ruination. However, they are all blessed/cursed because they each wield something Mother Nature. Not just your water, earth, fire, air; but rather, lightning, thunder, tornadoes, fire (yes), fog, hurricanes, etc… The question becomes how do these two types of people meet and can they exist together?
This time, I had new challenges. Could I finish another novel or was the first an exception? Would people be interested in this one like the first one? The answer is yes I could write a second novel and the verdict is still out on the second question. This book was released last June.
However, during this process I found a group of authors and we started up a zoom writing sprinting group. We originally did it for Nanowrimo in 2021 and it was for one month. However, at the end of it, we all realized it was helping us and we still continue the group to this day. It has helped me to get words in when I don’t feel like writing. I wouldn’t have completed as much as I have if it wasn’t for them. Also, over the last two years, I have written six short stories that appeared in different anthologies. Some of these will become novels and some I will publish on their own.
I am currently working on completing my third novel that is actually kind of a spin off of Complications of Pi. I decided to create a YA/NA series that features the fictional college that Peyton teaches out. While the main stories will be about students that are attending the college, Peyton will be making cameo appearances in some of these stories. I have one short story that will become a full length novel already that was in a Christmas anthology. The novel I am writing now was supposed to be a short story for a different one, but due to a few things it is now its own novel and I am hoping to release it this summer. It is titled Love Under the Stars so keep an eye out for it.
I still need to go back to finish Dream Escape that I started a few years ago. We all need our encouragement and motivation. So, if you think about it and you know someone is trying to work on something, take an interest in what they are doing or just tell them to keep it up. A few nice words can go a long way I have found with myself.
I want to send a quick shout out of thank you to my friends who will help me with character names and titles with stories because I appreciate it. How I go about that sometimes is a whole other thing and this is already so long in length.
Thank you again to Nicole for allowing me to take up so much space on her blog. Please check out my books and if you want to reach me you can find me on FaceBook or email me at my author email address.