Launch day!

Happy book birthday to my first novel, the Haunting of Springett Hall! Check out these first stops on the blog tour to read reviews and see what people are saying about it:

“The story itself was brilliant, I loved the romance and the paranormal and the bravery these two characters showed in the face of not just evil, but also their own faults. ”
Reading Lark

“I loved this book! It was not at all what I expected and I was really distressed that I didn’t have the time to devour it like I normally might have. Every time I had to put it down I groaned and inwardly complained about the other things I had to do instead.”
Literary Time Out

“It is a delicious ghost story with a twist.”
The Stubby Pencil’s Library

“This book has mysteries, suspense and danger around every corner. Just when I thought I had it figured out, the characters would unravel something new that messed up my theory. You’re going to want to stay up late reading this one!”
My Book a Day

“I get a little leery of paranormal stories because some of them are really far out there, but this one, even though there’s black magic and the occult, was handled in a clever way that didn’t leave me feeling icky. I really enjoyed the mystery of it all and the way things unfolded. There’s plenty of adventure, magic, and creepiness (especially the rats) mixed in with a great clean romance!”
Katie’s Clean Book Collection

“This book grabs your attention from the beginning and pulls you along for a great mystery and romance.”
Bookworm Lisa

“Definitely a great ghost story and the romance was a great add to the story!”
Community Bookstop

I don’t want to be the next [fill in the blank]

Make no mistake, I want to be successful, but I don’t think being someone else’s shadow is the way to do that. I recently read a book touted to be just like [big name author]. And it wasn’t. It wasn’t a bad story, but it suffered by the comparison. There are a lot of authors I consider classics, soaring to new heights and taking the literary world with them: Shakespeare, Jane Austen, Mark Twain, J.R.R. Tolkien, and Terry Pratchett (to name a few). I try to learn from them, but I don’t try to be them. I don’t have anything against tributes or retellings–I love them when they draw new insights from or put fresh spins on familiar stories. But no one is going to be a better Tolkien than Tolkien or a better Jane Austen than Jane Austen. If I try to be them, I’m always going to fall short.

Judy Garland said, “Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of someone else.” And, while I almost never agree with Nietzsche on anything, I do like this: “At bottom every man knows well enough that he is a unique being, only once on this earth; and by no extraordinary chance will such a marvelously picturesque piece of diversity in unity as he is, ever be put together a second time.”

The time writers really shine is when we find our own voices. I believe we have more to offer the world by writing our own stories than by trying to write anyone else’s.