Thursday, December 27, 2012

So, You Want to Describe Your Characters...

How, exactly, does one go about describing a character?  Vomiting character details?  What about personality, do we just throw details out there about that too?  How do you create a character that readers care about?  These are questions I'm going to attempt to help answer here.  Feel free to ask more questions in the comments--I'll be happy to help.

Now, on to character development! 

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Beware This User--One Star Reviews as Revenge

So, someone I know left an honest review of the book "This I Know" on Goodreads.  An apparent fan of the book replied rudely to her review.  I saw it, and called the commenter out on her rudeness.  You can see the exchange below (you can click on the pic to make it easier to see):




Shortly after I called "Hayley" out on her rudeness, she rated Vendetta 1-star, and wrote, "Terrible.  Don't waste your money."

Now, I am happy to accept any and all reviews, whether the reviewer loved or hated the book.  HOWEVER, I refuse to accept a 1-star rating because a user is a little crybaby immature bitch.

She's been reported, and now I'm sharing this with the world so you all know to watch out for her.  People really need to grow the fuck up.

UPDATE:  She apparently blocked me so I couldn't see the review, and then changed her non-review of the book from "Read" to "To Read" on her bookshelf once she was called out on it.  Thankfully, I have more friends than she does, and I get screenshots (this one is from a friend's phone).  Oh BURN, I have all the proof I need:







UPDATE #2:  The reviewer apparently even removed her rude comment (see first pic above) that started all of this.  She's apparently never heard of screenshots, nor does she realize that IT people can go in and trace everything she's done on the site (please note here that I know the difference between "site" and "cite").  Now, this may sound rather evil and bitchy (and I don't care), but if you have the balls to act like a total jackass, you should have the balls to stand behind your jackassedness.  Apparently, she only bullies people when she thinks she won't get in trouble for it.

And this is where I get to say--you fucked with the wrong bitch, m'dear.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Another Fantastic 5-Star Review for Vendetta!

From another review of Vendetta--


"Where do I start? -- this story had it all. Action, humor, political intrigue, romance, SOLID CHARACTERS. The fact that the central characters of the story were vampires was cool. But the plot of this story was so incredible that they didn't even need to be vampires for this to be a great story. It was just sort of an awesome bonus :)

I'll start with the main character, Sanaan. I LOVED Sanaan. She was badass but vulnerable. She was as lethal of a predator as a vampire could possibly be but she had an amazing capacity to love. She was flawed, she was broken, she was real. And all of Valente's characters were like that, personable and real, like you could jump into the world of the story and find them right away because you already knew them..."


Read the whole thing HERE.

Friday, December 21, 2012

How I Did This--The Book Writing Thing

So, whatever possessed me to write a book, anyhow?  Well, I'm about to tell you.  Why? Because I can.

I've been the creative type ever since I was a tiny little thing. Loved to draw, paint, do arts and crafts, the works. Once I learned how to read, I eagerly read everything I could get my little kid hands on. The library was one of my favorite places to go, as was the bookstore. So I read and drew and painted my little heart out.

During my teenager years, I wrote a lot of absolutely horrible poetry.  Tried writing short stories too, but didn't quite have the knack for it then. Those turned out horribly too, even though my friends assured me both my poetry and stories were awesome (they're not, believe me, LOL).

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Most Excellent Five-Star Review for Vendetta!

See this FANTASTIC 5-star review for Vendetta on Amazon!


"Let me start this review by saying that I am NOT a fan of vampire fiction typically. I normally actually can't stand them, as most of the ones I've run across tend to be poorly written and/or hyped up to the extreme. I am happy to say that this book was ABSOLUTELY not one of these. I'm actually stunned at the quality of the writing, how clear and coherent it was. I found myself raptly flipping through pages as I read, forgetting I was reading, even. I felt as though I were in the story..."


Read the whole thing HERE.



Gouging the Indie Author

Quite frankly, I am sick to death of seeing all these so-called "businesses" springing up that claim to be providing various services for a "reasonable" fee to supposedly help indie authors--everything from tweeting about your book, to book covers, to formatting your book for various e-readers.  While the services themselves are legit, the prices are NOT.

Warning: Vulgar language to follow.

I will now rant about all the gouging I see going on out there, plus advice to indie authors to NOT FUCKING FALL FOR IT.

Monday, December 17, 2012

FAMILY IN NEED!

Everyone, as you know, Christmas is right around the corner.  A dear friend of mine and her family--husband and two little girls--lost EVERYTHING in a gas line explosion that happened recently.  Their home and all their belongings were completely destroyed.

They are apparently good on clothes for now, but still need shoes.  And, of course, they need to rebuild their home, as well as refurnish it.  Any little bit that's donated to them will help tremendously.

If you could find it in your hearts to help my friend's family out, please do so.  Click HERE for details on how you can help.

You have my sincerest thanks!

Insurrection is now LIVE on Amazon!

Insurrection is now available for Kindle!  Get it here.

Insurrection Has Been Uploaded to Amazon!

All right, eager readers, here's the announcement you've been waiting for--Insurrection has been uploaded to Amazon!  At the very latest, it should be available tomorrow for your enjoyment.  Once it is available, I'll post the link to it here.

The paperback version should be available in a few days.  Formatting for the paperback version is always a total pain in the ass, so it takes me longer.  But you die hard physical-book lovers shouldn't have to wait too much longer :)

Also, I want to wholeheartedly thank all my fans for their continued support.  Without you, I wouldn't even be doing this.  You guys are awesome!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Why I Write

Why do I write?  There is no glib, easy answer to that question.  The short version is I've gone through a lot of hell in my life and, being the creative person I am, writing was a way for me to cope.  And, currently, it's a way for me to try to make a job for myself, rather than waiting for the dismal economy to create a job for me.

But by no means have I managed to completely create the job yet.  After all, it doesn't yet pay the bills.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

The Howling Cat by J. Luis Licea


     I know I should run faster, but having four legs to haul is not always easy. My heart beats too fast to be normal. I look at the sky as the moon hides behind a clan of scared clouds; she’s scared of me. I like to think I’m scared myself; running away in my last attempt to get more time in this world. Time—funny word when you know the meaning. My time is now. They have come for me. They chase me; the shadows. I know I must die, but not without one last fight.

GULP! by Ksenia Anske


                Darkness swallowed her. Even when she stretched out her fingers, spread them in a fan and moved them an inch away from her nose, still, she couldn't see them. It was like being blind without being blind, yet knowing that the dark milk around you is a complete absence of light that is only possible in an airtight bunker. Or a photographers dark room. Or a black hole. This was none of those, however. This, she realized, was the throat of a ghoul, and she was being swallowed alive, in once piece, to be digested by his acrid juices.    

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Faces in the Wall by Danica Rice


            It was a standard rest stop bathroom with three stalls, all available. They were all metallic brownish gold in color, quite an ugly color, she considered as she walked in, the paint was peeling, revealing the patchy equally ugly grey underneath. This was undoubtedly from multiple people slamming, thrusting them open or closed, in a sadly desperate hurry to avoid soiling themselves. Then again, it might only be from age and sheer neglect. She paid little to no attention to what appeared to be a standard rest stop bathroom..That was, until she entered the handicapped stall. There, she blindly walked to the toilet, focused more on her impending and urgent need to urinate, rather than the bricks to her right, spanning the entire wall.

Pod by M. Aamir Naseer


Dahlia had been staring at it for about an hour. Curiosity took over her mind. She couldn’t think, even if she tried hard. What was this thing? How could it be here without warning or any sound? The only questions that continued to provoke her.

Jolting as it were waking up, strolling down the stairs and suddenly you find, not a stranger, but something this huge. Strange. Like it was an alien object. Ambiguous. It stood there. Nothing like the controversial alien saucer advertised on TV. But indeed. An unidentified object. What she thought of as a “Pod”, as it stood motionless.

Flash Fiction--Alpha (The Beginning)


     I once was made of fire.  Flame as brilliant as the sun made my wings; glowing embers made my eyes.  I burned brightly, rising above and outside the world in unending glory.

     And then he came.  

     Made of night, he burned with darklight, black and shining in the depths.  The deepest shadow made his wings; glaciers made his eyes.  He burned darkly, underneath and inside the world in brutal glory.

     Drawn to each other, to the center of all things, we danced.  Light and darkness swirled together, and through the eons we wove the fabric of oneness that would ultimately decide our fates.

     Now we are made of ice and fire.  Our wings burn black, their tips edged in flame; our eyes are made of the unending night of space, filled with the cold/warm light of the billions of stars giving life to the void.

     And we are whole.



Copyright 2012 Elise Valente. All rights reserved.

Friday, December 7, 2012

VENDETTA Free Today & Tomorrow!

In celebration of Insurrection's upcoming release, VENDETTA will be free today and tomorrow, December 7th & 8th. If you haven't read it yet, get caught up on the story HERE before the second book hits stores!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

The Pit by Rachel Newman


                I couldn’t breathe, and I could barely move. Every breath was fought for, as I wriggled my way to the top of the pile. It was a just a pile, nothing special, nothing to fear. An impediment, a weight on my chest, and hips, and knees. So I slowly swam to the top. It seemed like hours, it could have been days. I kept fading. In and out of the darkness. But it was so hard to tell if I was awake at all; it was dark in the pile. The only lights were the glimmers, the ones that float in the corner of your eyes when there is really no light at all. The moonlight was garishly bright at the edge of the hole; shadows drowned in viscous pools, escaping the moonlight beneath winter dying trees, and dripping into the crudely dug pit.

Cornered by Kerryn Dowd


                “Anya, listen to me!” He grabs her so hard her teeth gnash together. She blinks, not really knowing what to do; he’s never grabbed her like this before. As a matter of fact he always avoids touching her. He gives her a gentle shake; gentle respectively.

                “Unless you want to die, right here, right now, take the damn Jian and wield it.”

                “I don’t know how!” She growls through clenched teeth.

                “Yes you do. It’s in your blood damn it.”

                “Liam, I...” His lips land on hers and for a moment she can’t move. But before she can decide if she wants to kick his ass or kiss him back he steps back, letting her go with a small shove.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Nowhere by Helen Boswell


          The heels of my boots click against the pavement in a rhythm that matches my anger. Alone. In a strange city. Bryce and I obviously have deeper problems than financial ones if he’s just willing to ditch me like this.

It was a vacation, our little escape to Las Vegas. I had no idea he had a gambling problem until the casino had Bryce removed from the gaming floors. He’d already maxed out our credit cards. And sold our plane tickets. And god knows what mess is waiting for me at home.

Maternal Instincts by Jason Cantrell


               She rose from the bed she shared with her lover, glancing down at the slumbering form framed by golden hair.  Her heart soared at the sight of her angel, and ached at the knowledge of crimes unconfessed.  She leaned over to kiss her sleeping lover, the taste of the night’s passion still warm on the sleeping girl’s lips.  Her lover whimpered and shifted in her sleep, and she smiled, tucking the blanket over her to keep her warm.  Then she turned and silently padded from the room, scooping her clothes off the floor as she went.

                As she dressed, she texted Lily: Are you hungry?

                A few minutes later, once she was dressed and pulling her shoes on, the phone vibrated with a return message: Starving.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

FLASH FICTION RUN!

Ok, it's been decided that I host a Flash Fiction surge on my blog.  Details are as follows:

Genre:  Paranormal/Urban Fantasy (bonus points if it's about vampires!)

Word Count:  500 words or less. (Sliding a teeny tiny bit on word count is something I will consider, provided you've busted your bum and just can't get it down to 500 words. But I expect you to TRY TRY TRY--this is a personal challenge, after all!)

Submission deadline:  By 11:59 p.m. Saturday, December 8th.

Where to submit:  Email all submissions to elise.valente@gmail.com

Number of submissions: You may submit multiple stories, but no more than 3 per author will be accepted.

Submissions will be posted on my blog for the world to see.  Writers, GET WRITING!!!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

The Beta Readers Have It!

Here's your update--Insurrection is now in the hot little hands of the beta readers.  Once they are done shredding it to pieces, it will be edited and revised according to their wisdom and made available to the rest of you.  Look for it soon!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

What Do They Look Like?

Ok, as a fun break from the hectic finishing of the book, I decided to to take a stroll among pictures of the famous to find some that more or less resemble what I think some of the characters look like.  Also, these people are casting possibilities should I ever get so lucky as to get a film deal, LOL (I highly doubt it, but a girl can dream).  Not everyone is here, because it takes a while to hunt these people down, but I'll be updating with Blaine, Danielle, and Samael soon.  Suggestions for these are welcome!

So, in no particular order:

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

There is No One, True Way

So, you've been thinking about writing.  Maybe a short story, or a novel even.  And you eagerly go out on the internet to read "how-to's" by published authors, or maybe even buy a book or two about (ironically) how to write a book.  And after you've sifted through all this information, you learn something very important:

There is no one, true way.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Flash Fiction--"Death"


            Everything is gray here.  The trees, the grass, the sea, the sky--all of it gray, life that thrives though it has all been emptied of all color.  It's a reflection of this place that is not a place, this in-between existence where night and day are forever entwined in a world of dawn and twilight.  It is quiet as a lover's whisper, and as still as the dead who temporarily call it home.
            But not all is quiet and still, though to the untrained eye, it would certainly seem that way.  If you look closely, as I do, you will see the patches of memories the dead recreate.  Everything from despair to joy can be seen and felt and heard in every detail if one only chooses to acknowledge these, the final reckonings of those who have passed.

Friday, October 12, 2012

And just when I was starting to heal...

My other geriatric kitty, Talia, left us today.  She was almost sixteen years old and lived a good, long life.  Losing two cats practically back-to-back...I have no words to describe how immensely this sucks.


Sunday, September 23, 2012

Rest in Peace, My Beloved

Everyone, this is my cat Vladimir.  He was almost 14 years old, and we had to put him to sleep today--he had kidney failure.  I'm gonna miss him.


Friday, September 21, 2012

Dogs and Chronic Ear Infections--I've Found the Cure

Seriously, I've found the freaking cure.  No, I don't make money off this or any other such nonsense.  I was at my wits end, and then stumbled on this, and am so thrilled with it I have to share.

I have three dogs--a Maltese, a German Shepherd, and a Border Collie mix.  My Maltese is an ancient old man, and he started getting the nasty yeast infections in his ears.  Repeated vet visits and treatments, costing loads of $$$, helped for a bit, but the infections would always come back within a few days of the treatment ending.

So I surfed the 'net in search of some help, and came across Pet King's Zymox Otic solution for ears.  It had a nearly five-star rating from over 800 reviews, all from people who were having the same issues with their pets' ears as I was.

So, by this point, the infection had spread to my other two dogs' ears, and I decided to give the Zymox stuff a shot.  Over 800 people can't be wrong, right?

Turns out it is THE BEST THING I'VE EVER SPENT MONEY ON.  I've just been treating my dogs for about three days now (it'll be another week or so before the treatment is finished), but already the infection is dramatically better.  My poor Maltese, who has suffered almost non-stop with his ears is--after only three days--feeling soooo much better.  His ears are clearing up, the redness is almost completely gone, and the best part is that he's getting relief.


And, once the treatment is done, treating his ears once a week will keep the infection away!

So, if you're like me and battling chronic ear infections in your pets (it's for both cats and dogs), GET THIS STUFF.  Seriously, I couldn't be happier with it.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Insurrection Teaser #2

The cover art so far...


A House Ghost--I Has One

Ok, just so we're clear, I am a skeptic.  A pretty sarcastic skeptic, even.  If something weird can be attributed to something rational, I'm all about the rational, and rather snarkily debunk just about everything.  And while I love the paranormal, I have a hard time with the ghost hunting shows on TV today.  Not only are most of them full of crap BS, but after seeing the video evidence of one ghost hunting team in particular faking stuff, there was no way I was going to put my faith in any of it.

However, despite those horrid shows and my own healthy skepticism, I can honestly attest to the existence of ghosts.  This is primarily due to the fact that I have one, and his name is Frank.

I don't know if Frank is his real name or not--we just definitely get the feeling he's male, and a former roommate named him.  Frank apparently goes in bouts of activity, and lately, he's been acting up.  I also have a ghost kitty, but it's much less active than the Frankster.

Let me start at the beginning.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

First Insurrection Teaser--The Playlist


I've been getting back on track with the writing, and to make up somewhat for the delay, here's the playlist--so far--that I'm currently listening to for Insurrection.  You can get at least a little bit of an idea of how this book is going to turn out from the songs ;)

They are (in no particular order):

Evanescence--My Heart is Broken

Heaven Shall Burn--Combat
Dead Air Dave--Dagger
Sully Erna--Sinner's Prayer
Bjork--Army of Me
Slipknot--Vermillion Part 2
Lindsey Stirling--Crystallize
Board Up the House--Genghis Tron
Invisible--Otep
Glycerine--Bush
Portishead--Only You


If/when this list is updated, I'll be sure to let you all know!

Friday, August 31, 2012

Please Help Otto!

Even if you can't adopt him or help with his vet bills, please share this around so that he has a better chance of getting help.  Animal cruelty is a horrible thing, and this poor guy was a bait dog for dogfighting.

Click the picture to go the Noah's Arks Rescue page for more information on how you can help him--




Sorry for the Delay...

...I've had a rough few months.  Lots of just crap in general hitting me all at once, but I can now--finally--see the light at the end of the tunnel.  The second book of my series, Insurrection, should be getting back on track and ready for your reading delight in a month or two.

In the meantime, see my previous post about Shocka-Con, WV's horror/sci-fi convention, where I will be selling and signing copies of my book!  If you're going to be in the area, swing by and say hi!

And before I sign off, here's a funny to start your day...one that describes me perfectly as I would die without my coffee...





Thursday, August 30, 2012

Shocka-Con!

Hey everyone!  I will be a guest at WV's horror/sci-fi convention Shocka-Con with my good friends 10/6 Photography & Arts.  I will have paperbacks of my book, Vendetta, available for sale and I will be signing them.



Friday, June 29, 2012

Integrity & The Importance of Reviews

You would think indie authors, knowing the hurdles and challenges we face in writing and self-publishing our works, would be more supportive of each other.  You'd think they would, at the very least, have respect for the work other indie authors have gone through and not seek to sabotage another author's sales.

Unfortunately, that apparently happens out there in the indie author world, especially as it comes to e-books.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Paperback on Amazon!

The Amazon page for the paperback version of Vendetta is up!  So if you prefer the physical book, now you can snag it!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Paperback Version of Vendetta!

The paperback version of Vendetta is now available.  It will take a couple days to list on Amazon, but you can buy it here if you don't want to wait.  Enjoy!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Author Page on Amazon!

My author page is now up and running on Amazon!  Check it out if you're interested :)

Excellent Opinion Article on Marriage Equality

One thing I can't stand is the general public trampling all over the rights of a minority group.  In the case of gay marriage, I find the public's opposition both disgusting and hard to fathom.  That's great if your personal religious beliefs state homosexuality is wrong--you can believe what you want.  However, you don't have the right to force those beliefs on the rest of us--especially through fear and lies--via codifying your beliefs into laws that affect all of us.

With that said, I believe this editorial from CNN sums up the issue quite nicely.  Of particular note is this line, which the author uses to describe the evolution of social consciousness in our country:

"When it gets right down to it, culturally we're like children who have to be forced to eat our vegetables."

Kudos to you, Mr. Granderson.  Kudos to you.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

On Social Issues--Women's Rights

A Michigan Congresswoman is banned from speaking on behalf of her constituents because she used the word "vagina" while standing up for women's rights.  A woman is labeled a "slut" for advocating women's access to birth control.  Churches and other religious organizations are screaming that their religious freedom is being negatively impacted by being required to offer coverage for women's birth control.  And states throughout our country are seeking to impose even more restrictive laws that would essentially lead to the absence of abortion providers.

In a time when unemployment remains high, foreclosures are continuing to render millions of Americans homeless, and the middle class is shrinking at an alarming rate--at this time, the Republican Right has decided one of the most important issues today is what goes on with my, or any other woman's, uterus and vagina.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Update On Paperback Version

I should have a proof of the paperback version next week.  Once I've reviewed it, and provided there are no issues with it, it will be approved and available to buy soon after.

The cover had to be modified somewhat for the paperback version.  For those of you interested, here is the digital form of what it looks like.  The title and my name will be added to the spine on the finished product (you can click on the picture for a larger view of it):



I'm pretty excited about having a physical copy of the book available for everyone!

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Vendetta in Paperback!

For you die-hard physical book fans--Vendetta will be available to order in paperback form soon.  The maximum time it will take is a couple weeks; barring any problems (keep your fingers crossed!), it should be ready sooner.  As soon as it's ready, I'll post an update :)

Monday, May 28, 2012

Had a great promo weekend, and second book is coming along.

Had a great free book promo weekend--close to 400 free copies of Vendetta were downloaded!  It's awesome to get to share what I've done with that many people, and I hope everyone who got a copy enjoys it.

If you missed it, not to worry--Vendetta is only $0.99, so even though it's no longer free, it's still pretty cheap.  Thanks to everyone who has taken the time to read my book.

The second book of the series, Insurrection, is coming along rather nicely.  It should be available by mid-July/early August, so you guys won't have to wait too much longer for the next stage in Sanaan's story!

Thanks again everyone, and I hope you all have a great Memorial Day weekend!

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Vendetta is live on Amazon for Kindle!

Everyone, you can now purchase Vendetta for your Kindle from Amazon!  I will continue to update as the Nook and paperback versions become available.

Vendetta Cover


Vendetta Teaser

Her team was a blur of speed as an earth-shattering round of explosions erupted behind them, the screaming of the Xul cut short as fire and falling debris snuffed out their lives.  They were running as fast as they could, but they were slowed by having to dodge the chunks of ceiling and walls that fell all around them.  The fire roared behind them, snapping at their heels, its heat sizzling the air and burning their lungs.

We've got to get out of here! Sanaan thought, feeling her boots start to melt in the heat, Corinne alternately coughing and screaming in her ear.  We've got to go, got to go, got to—

The air shimmered in front of her, turning the hallway into distorted waves of color, but she had no time to think about it—the fire almost had them.  She plunged through the distortion, the rest of her team right on her heels.

Dizziness overcame her, and her stomach dropped.  The world bent and folded around her, the sight disorienting her and making her nauseous.  Just when she thought she was about to puke a puddle of blood all over herself, she tumbled onto solid ground, Corinne grunting as she was thrown from Sanaan's back.  Sanaan heard similar sounds as the rest of her team landed on—grass?

Hello All!

Hello All!

Writing this book has been a pretty big adventure for me, and I've enjoyed every minute of it.  I've also found that writing is very therapeutic for me, helping me to understand myself better, and helped me to learn about the book writing process as a whole.  In fact, for me, the best part of writing the book was finding out how what happens in the story.

The Amaranthine Blood series is one that I feel I will be with for a while--I love the characters, love how the storyline is working out in my ADD afflicted, over-crowded brain, and love how it has affected those who have read it so far.  It's all very cool, and I'm definitely looking forward to continuing.

So, for anyone interested--Vendetta has been uploaded for both Kindle and Nook.  The Kindle edition should be available by tomorrow, the Nook edition in at least three days.  I will update my blog as they become available.

Also, I am working on getting a physical paperback edition available for you die-hard physical book fans!  As soon as the print edition is ready, I will update my blog to let you all know.

To everyone who ends up reading and enjoying Vendetta, the first book in the Amaranthine Blood series--thank you!  Thank you for taking the time to check out my book, and thank you very much for your support.

Best regards,
Elise