An Excerpt from The Day of First Sun, Plus $450 in Amazon Gift Cards & a Kindle Fire up for grabs! Novel Publicity

Please enjoy this excerpt from the urban fantasy novel, The Day of First Sun. Then read on to learn how you can win huge prizes as part of this blog tour, including $450 in Amazon gift cards, a Kindle Fire, and 5 autographed copies of the book.

Sturtagaard chose not to speak, though it was he who had called for the meeting. They both checked their watches and realized they had been sitting across from him for ten minutes, watching him sniff the air. If he wanted to play this, they would play along at least for a little while longer, though both were tired of the leering. As the vampire sniffed again, Cham finally figured out why.
“You know, you called us. We really don’t have anything to say to you, so if you’re just playing games, we’re happy to leave. I’ve got other, more important things to do than watch you sniff and leer,” Cham finally said, and stood up.
Sturtagaard smiled as he watched Cham open the door because he much preferred dealing with Annie, but when she stood up, too, he realized he’d overplayed his hand.
“If I talk, my employer will have me staked. I’d like some assurance that you won’t do the same,” he said rather quickly, before they left.
They turned and looked at him, both rolling their eyes.
“I’ll have you staked if you don’t talk,” replied Cham, as he stood by the door.
“You’re out of options if you ever hope to get out of here again,” Annie said calmly, focusing on his face.
Sturtagaard squirmed a little in his seat, as Annie’s expression was somewhat disquieting and unemotional. He looked at Cham, whose face was expressionless, and then back to Annie, who hadn’t moved a muscle. The vampire sighed.
“You heard right. I was hired to create a zombie army to overthrow the Wizard Council,” Sturtagaard said. His voice remained steady and calm with resignation.
“Who wants to overthrow the Council?” asked Cham, his hand still clutching the door.
“My employer. I’ve told you, I don’t know who he is. I always dealt with his associate. He’d show up, leave notes, or send others with messages. I’ve never contacted him.” He looked from one to the other, but they both remained stony and detached. “Come on, now. I can’t give you information I don’t have.” Sturtagaard was charming.
Annie rolled her eyes again. “You really don’t have any idea who the employer is?” she asked with sarcasm.
“Really, I don’t,” he said.
“So you’re building an army of the dead. How long did you have to get this done?” Annie took out her phone and pulled out her calendar.
“He wanted it ready for September first.”
Annie looked up with a grimace, and Cham looked surprised. She didn’t need to mark the date on her calendar or research its significance, though neither could figure out why a zombie army had to be created for that day, the Day of First Sun. It was a very powerful and ancient day for good magic.
“So, your employer wants an army of the dead on that day? Why?” Cham asked in a flat, emotionless voice.
“He’s a black wizard. What do you think he wants? He wants to overthrow the Council, take over the world, practice magic in the open. You know, the typical magical fantasy.” Sturtagaard grinned because he believed that would benefit the entire supernatural world.
“Wipe the smirk off your face, Sturtagaard. Having free reign won’t be as good as you think, with all the angry mobs, torches, and stakes through the heart.”
Annie smirked at Cham, who shook his head and laughed. He waited to compose himself before looking back at the vampire.

As part of this special promotional extravaganza sponsored by Novel Publicity, the price of the Day of First Sun eBook edition is just 99 cents this week. What’s more, by purchasing this fantastic book at an incredibly low price, you can enter to win many awesome prizes. The prizes include $450 in Amazon gift cards, a Kindle Fire, and 5 autographed copies of the book.
All the info you need to win one of these amazing prizes is RIGHT HERE. Remember, winning is as easy as clicking a button or leaving a blog comment–easy to enter; easy to win!
To win the prizes:

  1. Purchase your copy of The Day of First Sun for just 99 cents
  2. Fill-out the simple form on Novel Publicity
  3. Visit today’s featured social media event

Help my blog win:
The tour blogger who receives the most votes in the traffic-breaker poll will win a $100 gift card. When you visit Novel Publicity’s site to fill-out the contest entry form, don’t forget to VOTE FOR ME. – More than Magic and Me!

About the book: A vampire, a rogue wizard and an army of soulless zombies are par for the course for Annie Pearce and Bobby “Cham” Chamsky of the Wizard’s Guard. But when the non-magical princess, Amelie of Amborix, is murdered by magical means, a deeper plot unfolds. Get it on Amazon.

About the author: Behind the wheel of her ’66 Mustang Convertible, Sheryl is a constant surprise, using her sense of humor and relatable style make her books something everyone can enjoy. Visit Sheryl on her website, Twitter, Facebook, or GoodReads.

Sales and Pictures and Pins

As of just a few moments ago I “sold” my 100th book since adding Semester Aboard to the Smashwords Read an E-Book Week sale!  All this week Semester Aboard – and countless other books – are free or deeply discounted on Smashwords!  This is really exciting, especially considering that I had under 100 total buys before entering the sale.  I’ve seen a few more people add to their Goodreads shelves since the sale started as well.  I’m beyond thrilled.

Yesterday the “interview” with Charlie went live.  You can find it here!  It was a fun little twist on an interview.  If anyone wants to interview another of my characters let me know!  It was a blast!

Today, a sneak peek of Semester Aboard was posted on Indies Unlimited. I may be doing a guest post with them as well in the near future.

In celebration of the interview with Charlie, I had a little contest on my Facebook Page where people posted pictures of what they think he looks like!  I chose three winners and then posted a picture I had found.  The winners each got a signed bookmark, I’ll be doing a bunch of shout-outs and page promos for them, and I pinned their winning pictures on Pinterest: my newest addiction!  And, obviously, they are also getting mentioned here!

First we have a lovely shot David Wenham from Melissa Ringstead of There for You Editing! She would also like me to give a shout-out to Anchor Group Publishing. I stumbled onto some pictures of him when looking for my own vision of Charlie and considered them for a bit.  I guess great minds think alike!

Next, we have Jenny Needham’s picture of someone who reminds me of Big Pete.  If anyone knows who this is, let me know!  Jenny requested a shout-out for Black Words-White Pages, who will be doing a giveaway when they hit 300 likes! As I said on Facebook, Charlie would never let himself get this scruffy, but you never know!

Last, but not least, we have someone you probably all know, posted by Brittany Hiester.  She asked me to promo the page My Home Away From Home, which is a great page!  So, here we have Rupert Grint! I hesitated to choose his picture, since we all know which magical story he’s famous for. But, that may be the price I pay for having a red-head of my own.  To be fair, aside from being too tall, he is a good Charlie!
 And now, the one I came across!  This is Kirsten Myburgh, and I guess he was rumored as playing Tin-Tin or something, IMDB is vague.  Anyway, other than having eyes the wrong color he is just about spot-on as Charlie!  I sent a picture of him to my go-to Semester Aboard guru and her immediate response was “Char!”
I’m excited to do this for the rest of the characters too!  Start finding pictures!  Thank you to everyone who entered this contest!
And last, but not least, I have finally gotten into Pinterest!  I’ve been adding pictures that remind me of Semester Aboard!

Leap Day Post

I could have posted this yesterday, but I get a child-like excitement whenever I see February 29th written. In fact, I have a “diary” that I started in 2000 that I only read and write in on February 29th. I’m looking forward to finding it sometime today and reading it.  Enough about that.  Since it’s the end of a rather exciting month, I think I’ll take a moment to sum it all up.

February 5th was Semester Aboard‘s half-birthday. It’s a little surreal to think that it’s been published for half a year. It’s even more unbelievable to me when I think about everything that’s happened in just six months. I broke 500 fans on the Facebook page this month: a goal I thought was unreachable when I was struggling to get my first 25. Not a week goes by when a book on some website doesn’t sell and I keep getting (very kind and amazing!) reviews! 

Barnes & Noble reported their sales to Smashwords yesterday and I’ve already sold 36 (16 in February alone) in 2012.  I sold 66 at B&N from August to December.  My mind is just blown away that I’ve already sold more than half that!  Honestly, it’s just all so exciting that I can’t believe it.

I have official bookmarks now, some have already been mailed out to people who have won them!

And last, but not least, there are a lot of exciting things coming up!  Semester Aboard is going to be a feature on Indies Unlimited on March 7 (I posted the link, but it won’t work until the 7th). I’ll also be doing a guest post for them soon.  There will also be an interview with Charlie going up sometime this weekend – yes, Charlie the character from Semester Aboard.  It was really fun and I’m hoping to do more character interviews in the future.

In other news, the wedding count-down numbers are getting dreadfully small.  I’ll still be about as often as I can, but expect me to all but vanish in mid-April.  Then, although I love you all, I won’t be mucking around on blogger on my honeymoon, so I’ll be gone for a week.

It’s also worth mentioning that I’ve got an on-going pseudo contest on my Facebook Page. Basically, I’ve gotten jealous of all of the beautiful pictures I see on other pages. The only pictures I have are my cover, my writing happy place, and a lonely, lovely piece of fanart.  So, I’m asking people (no artistic talent necessary, just use google!) to find images that remind them of Semester Aboard and post them to my page, along with a comment that explains why you chose the picture.  Once I have enough to make it a decent contest (like 5 or 6) I’ll choose the 3 best and the winners will either get a signed bookmark or a free digital copy of Semester Aboard.  Yes, I realize that last prize doesn’t help people who have it already.  If you don’t have it, you can read the first four chapters right here – I think that will be enough to inspire you to find a picture.

Thanks for taking the time to read my long-winded nonsense!

Valentine’s Day

Happy Valentine’s Day everyone!

Even if you’re single, don’t forget that Valentine’s Day is supposed to be about love.  So, take some time today to love yourself!  Buy that book you’ve been eyeing, eat your favorite food for dinner, and take a little time for you!

First, there is an amazing contest going on right now: There for You: Valentine’s Book Lovers Fest!  All you have to do is like a few Facebook pages from participating authors and you can win tons of prizes!  There are free ebooks, autographed swag, and gift cards!  It ends tonight at 11:30pm, so hurry and enter now! 

In other news, I’ve been slow to write, but am gradually making progress into the first chapter of Book 2.  I plan to do a ton of writing this weekend.  I’m heading off to the beach and I’ll be tucked into my favorite writing corner.

And finally, I have a little feel-good story for you. Yesterday I took a bunch of four-year-olds on a field trip to a local library.  Each one got to explore and choose their own book that I checked out for them.  It was absolutely fantastic seeing young children getting excited about books!

Contest Winners and November

Well, the contest was over and the winners have (or should have!) gotten their free digital copies of Semester Aboard!

Another big congrats to the Paranormal Reads FB group, Ashley O, Marian L, Heather G, Yvonne L. Tracie B, Chelsea R, Morgan L, and Kymberlee B!  I hope you all enjoy my book!

November is looking like it’s going to be a big month for Semester Aboard.  Any day now there will be a feature run on Pinky’s Pub!  Annette of Gothic Mom’s Book Reviews just posted a review yesterday, which can be found here.  I’m also thrilled to say that I’ve been adopted for Adopt an Indie Month!  My wonderful new ‘mommy’ Sher has already posted a little teaser for me on her blog: Sher A Hart.  She’ll also be interviewing me fairly soon and posting that as well.  But wait, there’s more!  I’m going to be doing a guest post on the 21st on Intoxicated by Books

And, last but not least, Semester Aboard hit 100 downloads on Smashwords this month!  A lot of those are the free sample 10%, but I’m still pretty stoked to see the triple digits!  The daily page views have also be steadily climbing. 

Final Contest Day!

Ok today is the last day to enter the contest!  I’ll be drawing names tomorrow, based on how many people entered the contest!  At the moment I’ll be giving away eight free digital copies of Semester Aboard!

For those of you who don’t know the drill, there are several ways to get entries, the easiest are to follow this blog, to like my facebook page and to add Semester Aboard on Goodreads.  And, if you refer anyone to my facebook page, you’ll get an entry if they let me know who sent them!

Then, you’ve got a chance to really rack up the entries; for the past 8 days I’ve been posting trivia relating to Dani, one of the main characters of Semester Aboard.  Every time to comment or ask a question (a good one!) relating to the trivia or SA in general, you get an entry!  You also get a chance to learn a bit more about the characters before you get a chance to dive in!  Even though this is day 9, you can still comment on all of the previous trivia!

Tomorrow, probably around 7:30 EST, I’ll be drawing and announcing the winners!  You’ve still got plenty of time to enter!

On to the trivia:

As the book progresess our narrator Jen (and the reader!) learn that Dani has a few shadows in his past.  Jen manages to delve into some of them, but the observant reader might be able to spot hints and clues that Jen misses.  It is entierly possible to figure out quite a bit of Dani’s past – you just have to keep your eyes open!

Disclaimer: This trivia will be tricky to question, as I’ll probably be maddeningly unhelpful.  That said, you can get plenty of entries just by commenting on other SA related things.  Don’t forget, you can read the first chapter on Facebook in my notes section and you can also read the first 3 (and a half I think) on both Amazon and Smashwords!

Good luck tomorrow! 

Trivia! Only one more day!

My life is busy!  Here is yesterday and today’s trivia for the contest!  As always, leave a good comment or question and you could get an entry to the contest!  The winners will get a free digital copy of Semester Aboard!

Yesterday’s: In addition to Dani, there are five other main characters in Semester Aboard. Dani met Thomas first, then TS, then Mariana, and then Charlie. He meets our narrator, Jen, shortly before Chapter One begins! 

Today’s Trivia: Dani tells Jen (the narrator of Semester Aboard) that his real name is Danio. This is true, but it’s a very simplified version of the truth. For all intents and purposes, Danio IS his real name and that’s what it says on most of his legal documents (although a couple say Daniel). But, he changed his name to Danio after moving to America. In Greece, he went by Nikolaos. The only people who still call him that are his relatives in Greece and, if he’s about to get in trouble, his mother. But, neither one is his birth name! His real name is – as most names in Panthalassish are – a long, complicated, poetic description of tides and currents and things.

Trivia Day 5 and 6 (oops!)

I knew I forgot something yesterday!  Here’s today, and yesterday’s trivia for the contest!  I’m pretty stoked,  I’ve got a total of 101 entries!  Some of you have gathered a bunch!  It looks like I’ll be giving away at least 8 copies!

So, here’s yesterday’s trivia about Dani!

In addition to sports, Dani is a big music guy. He can play the piano and the guitar, and, naturally, he’s a great singer. He’ll listen to just about any music, although he isn’t a huge fan of rap. But, he thinks that pirate hip-hop might just be the internet’s greatest contribution to society.
And today is a little different than previous ones!  This time, you ask me something you want to know! It can be about Dani, or (if you’ve read chapter 1, available in my notes on Facebook) it can be about any of the other characters/Semester Aboard in general!

You’ll get an entry into the contest for every good question you ask! Remember, we’re drawing to a close! The contest ends the 9th and I’ll announce the winners on the 10th! The more people who enter, the more winners of a copy of Semester Aboard there will be! Be sure to read my earlier updates for more ways to enter!

Dani Trivia and Contest Day #1

Ok! First day of trivia! Basic summary, I’m celebrating Dani’s birthday by posting trivia about him not found in the book, Semester Aboard! I’m also offering entries to a contest, the winner(s) will get a free copy of the book! Please see below for the full contest details. Essentially, if you comment (with thought-out comments) to the trivia with Semester Aboard related comments/questions/etc, then you’ll get an entry!

Today’s Dani Tidbit – Dani hates shoes. He goes barefoot as often as possible. If he really, really has to put on shoes, he opts for sandals 9 times out of 10. He’s pretty sure that going barefoot is against the office dress code, but so far nobody has said anything to him. Which, by Dani-logic, means that he’s free to ditch the shoes until someone catches him.
  Full Contest Details:
Dani’s birthday is November 10th!  Who is Dani?  He’s a character in my novel, More than Magic: Semester Aboard.  To celebrate his birthday (and three full months of being published!)  I’m holding a contest!  The prize, and there will be multiple winners, is a free copy of Semester Aboard
 There are a bunch of different ways to get entries!  
1. Like my facebook page: More than Magic: Semester Aboard 
2.  Refer people!  You get an entry (and so do they!) every time someone likes the page and says you sent them!
3. Same as above, but with my blog!  Every follower gets an entry, and you get entries for everyone who says to sent them.
4. Shout-outs!  If you shout-out my page on FB, you get an entry!  I don’t spam though, so you only get 1 entry per day for shout-outs!
5. Add Semester Aboard to your Goodreads shelf!
6.  Trivia comments!  Every day until the 9th I’m going to post some trivia about Dani that isn’t found in the book.  There won’t be spoilers, but I hope some of it will intrigue you!  If you leave a comment (or a question, or even start a discussion!) after I post the trivia, then you’ll get an entry!  The comment has to be either related to the trivia itself or Semester Aboard in general.  You can also read the first chapter here if you need more comment-fodder.  All I ask is that the comments are reasonably thought out.  Not just a simple “That’s funny!”  I am putting a lot of time into this contest!  
Now, not only can you get 9 entries if you comment every day, you can comment here AND on facebook for a total of 18 entries!  Plus, if I happen to really like your comment or something, you might earn even more!
Last, but not least, I’m giving away one copy for every five people who enter!  Good luck!  The drawing will be on the 10th!

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