I should probably blog about this….


I’m terrible at marketing – truly terrible! For example, my book has been free on Kindle since yesterday and I haven’t even blogged about it yet! See – terrible! Mostly though, it’s because I worry about shoving things down people’s throats. I rarely tweet buy links to my book, I figure I’d rather waffle on about something else or chit-chat to my friends on there. I will not be winning any marketing awards…..ever!

Anyhoooo – my book is free on Kindle until PSD midnight Friday….just in case anyone out there wants to know 😀


paperbackfrontAfter a terrifying vampire attack in 1810, Ilia Rose spent the next two centuries hunting Sol, the man responsible for turning her and her friends into vampires.

When Ilia discovers he’s run to the one place she’s running from, she’s forced to face her most painful memories back in her hometown, Bearwood.

There, Ilia finds herself face to face with Nathaniel, an insanely hot vampire, and despite the evidence he’s working for her enemy, Ilia can’t fight her attraction to him, especially when he seems to show up whenever she needs him most.

But Nathaniel is keeping secrets and as they begin to unravel, instead of running away from him, Ilia finds herself falling for him. When his last secret is revealed Ilia’s past comes together in a way she never imagined and she’s left with only one option: trust Nathaniel to help her kill Sol, or risk relinquishing her new found strength thus causing catastrophic and devastating consequences for her and everyone she loves.

Ilia begins a gut-wrenching battle to save her life and the lives of her friends, a battle which not everyone will survive.

A vampire tale like none other, love, pain, devastation and revenge, all weave together to create the first in a dark and unmissable new adult series.

Due to sexual content, this book is intended for readers age 18+

Add-to-Goodreads-Button amazoncom amazonuk amazon-buttonNow I can check shameful self promo and tag manipulation off the list…….

Halfskin by Tony Bertauski

Cover - HalfskinBiomites are artificial stem cells that can replace any cell in your body. No more kidney failure, no severed spines or blood disease. No cancer. Pharmaceuticals become obsolete. With each dose of biomites, we become stronger, we become smarter and prettier.

We become better.

At what point are we no longer human?

Nix Richards nearly died in a car accident when he was young. Biomites saved his life. Ten years later, he’s not so lucky. The Halfskin Laws decree a human composed of 50% biomites is no longer human. Halfskins have no legal rights and will have their biomites shutdown. It’s not called murder, merely deactivation.

Cali Richards has been Nix’s legal guardian since their parents died. She has lost far too many people in her life to let the government take Nix. She is a nanobiometric engineer and will discover how to hide him. But even brilliance can succumb to the pressure of suffering. And technology can’t cure insanity.





Shooting Truth-Bullets Since Birth
Subscribers: 3,233

It’s the end of time, peeps.
Mark this date, put a black X on your calendar because it’s all over, starting today. It used to be that if you didn’t like the laws where you lived, you just moved to another state or another country. Freedom existed somewhere in the world. We had a choice. I mean, hell, if you were desperate enough you could live on the South Pole with penguins and shit.
Not anymore.
Today, it’s all over.
Today, M0ther was born.
Who’s M0ther? Our M0ther. Already got a mother? Now you got two, only this one will know everything about you. You can’t hide from her, she’ll know when you’re full of crap, know where you stash your porn, know when you pick your nose and when you eat it.
You’ll hate her, and she’ll know that, too.
Case you’ve been asleep for the last 10 years, the Mitochondria Terraforming Hierarchy of Record is what I’m talking about.
Let’s just call her M0ther.
A mother that doesn’t bake cookies or wash your underwear. She’s not getting up to make you French toast or wipe your nose. Nope. This bitch is going to spy on you until you’re dead. Which may be sooner than you think.
M0ther is somewhere in the frozen plains of Wyoming. No pictures of her exist because no one’s allowed to even flyover. But rumors say she’s this massive dome, a computer the size of a football stadium, like some artificial brain heaved out of the frozen soil that’s wirelessly connected with every biomite in existence.
Hear that buzzing on your phone? She’s listening.
Feel that tickle on your laptop? She knows you’re tapping.
All that Do Not Covet Your Neighbor’s Wife crap? Yeah, that’s the real deal, now. M0ther might tell your wife what you’re thinking about doing to Joe-Bob’s wife mowing the lawn in a tube top.
George Orwell wasn’t even close, man. I mean, Big Brother was just a pea shooter compared to M0ther. Big Brother was pissing on a forest fire; M0ther’s bringing the goddamn ocean.
Here’s the official statement from Marcus Anderson, Chief of the Biomite Oversight Committee.
(BTW, he looks like a gargoyle. Right?)

It is with great pleasure that, after ten years of global effort, I present to you the greatest feat of humankind. I present to you a regulatory system that will keep all people safer and healthier for centuries to come. Bionanotechnolgy has put us on the brink of greatness, but with that comes uncertainty and danger. The human species has the potential to live forever. Or end tomorrow.
I prefer the former.
Mitochondria Terraforming Hierarchy of Record is linked to every booted cellular-sized biomite living inside our bodies. Its primary function will be to monitor individual levels of biomites and take appropriate action if, or when, they cross a previously determined threshold. This will keep us human.
This will keep us safe.





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During the day, I’m a horticulturist. While I’ve spent much of my career designing landscapes or diagnosing dying plants, I’ve always been a storyteller. My writing career began with magazine columns, landscape design textbooks, and a gardening column at the Post and Courier (Charleston, SC). However, I’ve always fancied fiction.

My grandpa never graduated high school. He retired from a steel mill in the mid-70s. He was uneducated, but he was a voracious reader. I remember going through his bookshelves of paperback sci-fi novels, smelling musty old paper, pulling Piers Anthony and Isaac Asimov off shelf and promising to bring them back. I was fascinated by robots that could think and act like people. What happened when they died?

I’m a cynical reader. I demand the writer sweep me into his/her story and carry me to the end. I’d rather sail a boat than climb a mountain. That’s the sort of stuff I want to write, not the assigned reading we got in school. I want to create stories that kept you up late.

Having a story unfold inside your head is an experience different than reading. You connect with characters in a deeper, more meaningful way. You feel them, empathize with them, cheer for them and even mourn. The challenge is to get the reader to experience the same thing, even if it’s only a fraction of what the writer feels. Not so easy.

In 2008, I won the South Carolina Fiction Open with Four Letter Words, a short story inspired by my grandfather and Alzheimer’s Disease. My first step as a novelist began when I developed a story to encourage my young son to read. This story became The Socket Greeny Saga. Socket tapped into my lifetime fascination with consciousness and identity, but this character does it from a young adult’s struggle with his place in the world.

After Socket, I thought I was done with fiction. But then the ideas kept coming, and I kept writing. Most of my work investigates the human condition and the meaning of life, but not in ordinary fashion. About half of my work is Young Adult (Socket Greeny, Claus, Foreverland) because it speaks to that age of indecision and the struggle with identity. But I like to venture into adult fiction (Halfskin, Drayton) so I can cuss. Either way, I like to be entertaining.

And I’m a big fan of plot twists.

You can find out more on the authors website and blog.

Book Blitz: The King’s Sword by C.J. Brightley

Cover - The King's SwordA disillusioned soldier. A spoiled, untried prince. A coup that threatens the country they both love. When retired soldier Kemen finds the young prince Hakan fleeing an attempted assassination, he reluctantly takes the role of mentor and guardian. Keeping the prince alive is challenging enough. Making him a man is harder.

As usurper Vidar tightens his grip on power, Kemen wrestles with questions of duty and honor. What if the prince isn’t the best ruler after all?

Invasion looms, and Kemen’s decisions will shape the fate of a nation. What will he sacrifice for friendship and honor?




You can also purchase The King’s Sword direct from the author, Barnes and Nobel, Smashwords and Kobo.


I live in Northern Virginia just outside Washington, DC, with my husband, young children, and our sheltie mix. They keep me pretty busy, but in my free time I write, read, teach karate, make jewelry, and bake. I love the smell of snow but I hate being cold. I once hugged a tiger. I love hearing from readers, so please get in touch!

You can find C.J. Brightley on her website, Google+, Facebook and Twitter.

gaWin a signed copy of The Kin’s Sword!

Enter Here.

The Life Stages of a Pantsers Manuscript

A friend of mine is faced with having to write her first full-length novel for a few years. It’s not going to be a problem for her – well, she thinks it will be, but her words are so epic that I know it’ll be fantastic once it’s done, even if she hits some rocks along the road. But it got me to thinking about the life stages of our books. I know we are all different, but for your amusement, here’s mine.

0 Words – Stark Beginnings

In the beginning – there was… actually, I don’t know what there was. The beginning of a book is not when you or I put pen to paper, it’s when that first little seed enters the brain. Who knows how it begins? I couldn’t tell you. I do know, that for me, it began with an image while listening to a song, but something must’ve triggered it before that? Maybe…



500 Words…of notes

So now I have the main characters name and a little background. But not much more. But I do know her hair color. Hell yeah!

2000 Words…still notes

Whoop whoop! – I now have names of LIs, Protagonist, and friends and a tiny bit of their background.

—— Words…I’ve lost count

My notepad doesn’t have a word counter, but it’s full up and I have everyone. Still…I have no plot.

200 Words…of my manuscript

So it begins. Kind of. Or is this complete crap. Should I delete it and start again? What’s going on. Anyone know?



1000 Words in.

I have main character, I have setting, I have action. I have…crap – which character should I introduce next. I should really know this by now.

0 Words in.

That was rubbish. Start again.

2500 words in.

I did it!!! I wrote a chapter. OMG – It’s fabulous. I can totally do this.


10000 words in.

Still rocking it!


12000 Words in.

That’s just….that’s just awful. I don’t even know what that is.


15000 words in.

I Wonder what everyone’s up to on Twitter.


25000 Words in.

And….I’m baaaack. I am the QUEEN of this place. Ooo, yeah. Look what I just wrote. How freakin awesome is that. Honestly…my own genius scares me.




30000 Words in.

I am a total failure.



40000 Words in.

Beginning – check. Middle – check. Ugh – what’s that chapter all about. CUT.

50000 Words in.

There’s a pigeon in that tree. And a squirrel in that one. Ooo – a dragonfly. *Runs off to have a look.


50005 Words in.

That dragonfly sure was pretty. I wonder what other colors they come in. Google has the answers….

60000 Words in.

I actually just don’t care anymore.

65000 Words in.

Oh yes, now I’m rocking it like the God that I am.


65002 Words in.

Wait…what? That’s crap!!! *Jams finger on delete key.


30000 Words in.

I can’t believe I just deleted 35k words. *Sobs while jamming cake into mouth.


30000 Words in and several weeks later.

*Peeks out from under pillow fort. Area seems safe. Snatches notepad from beneath junk food rubbish while swigging cola.

30000 Words in.

I guess I turned into a plotter somewhere along the way….

40000 Words in.

Yes. This is much better.

50000 Words in.

Is it really better? Is this too much? Are there too many twists? Consults critique partner.


60000 Words in.

OMG – I did NOT see that coming. Thank you character who shall not be named for guiding me toward the light.

70000 Words in.

*Stares at screen. Sniffles. Is it really over?

75000 Words in.

Of course not. Layer – you idiot.

80000 Words in. Several months later.

Draft one million and sixty finished.

77000 Words in and several weeks later.

CP’s have ripped it to pieces and I’ve put it back together again. Off to the editor it goes.

OMG – I’m finished. Now I can do all those things I wanted to when I was writing.


A half hour later.

*Fires up laptop… Chapter One….


And there you have it. My writing process. I would love to know yours!

Free on Kindle Today: A Journal of Sin by Darryl Donaghue


A Journal of Sin, by Darryl Donaghue, is free today on Kindle! This is a fantastic crime/thriller/mystery and deserves a place on any fan of the genre’s shelf. Whip it up now, while it’s free – you only have the weekend!

journalA village, isolated by a severe storm, and a young officer, alone and out of her depth. A troubled priest is brutally murdered, leaving behind a journal of the resident’s confessional secrets; secrets certain people would prefer he took to the grave.

As word spreads, the pressure rises as the eyes of the town watch her every move. With no forensic team, no support and a savage killer hiding in a turbulent town, is PC Sarah Gladstone up to the task?

Grab it Now!

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My Gift to You

For all the people so used to seeing me going on and on about Fractured Immortal, I’m sorry , but wait! Y’all know how much love I put into it. How I bled, cried, damaged my spine and continue to spend most of my life with my eyes open rather than lose precious hours of creativity to the sleep boat (which has well and truly sailed). And for what?

For this. paperbackfront It was for this.

And now – for 24 hours, you can see what all the fuss was about, because it’s


Really, truly


And for those of you new to my blog, aside from HELLO! Here is a quick rundown of Fractured Immortal and the links to grab a copy are below it.

FIAfter a terrifying vampire attack in 1810, Ilia Rose spent the next two centuries hunting Sol, the man responsible for turning her and her friends into vampires.

When Ilia discovers he’s run to the one place she’s running from, she’s forced to face her most painful memories back in her hometown, Bearwood.

There, Ilia finds herself face to face with Nathaniel, an insanely hot vampire, and despite the evidence he’s working for her enemy, Ilia can’t fight her attraction to him, especially when he seems to show up whenever she needs him most.

But Nathaniel is keeping secrets and as they begin to unravel, instead of running away from him, Ilia finds herself falling for him. When his last secret is revealed Ilia’s past comes together in a way she never imagined and she’s left with only one option: trust Nathaniel to help her kill Sol, or risk relinquishing her new found strength thus causing catastrophic and devastating consequences for her and everyone she loves.

Ilia begins a gut-wrenching battle to save her life and the lives of her friends, a battle which not everyone will survive.

A vampire tale like none other, love, pain, devastation and revenge, all weave together to create the first in a dark and unmissable new adult series.

Fractured Immortal
From 12am PST Fractured Immortal will be available free for 24 hours only! Grab your copy now and if you could tell your friends – I’d be super duper happy, thank you 🙂 And if you could reblog, wow, I’d be forever your servant 😀
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My inital intention with Evageline was to write it on wattpad. However I have since overhauled the story and made some cuts. It’s in its very early stages and the first 50k words will be written for NaNoWriMo. Evangeline started out as a superhuman ridding the world of supernaturals in the present day. However this has since changed to become superhumans working to rid their city of the regime that destroyed the world.

Below is what Evangeline started out as. On a later post you will get an idea of what it became.



EVANGELINE GRAY is an Elected, part of an elite group of superhumans tasked with controlling the supernatural in the real world, keeping the knowledge of their exisence safe from humans.

Removed from society when she turned twenty-one, Evangeline’s memories were wiped as she began training to become a fearless warrior. She has given everything to the Dissident, the organization that control her and she expects nothing in return.

When the Dissident betray her, Evangeline is forced to hide in the shadows while trying to save herself, and everyone she loves.

Chapter One
The door swung outward, illuminating the street for several seconds. The target emerged in a dark suit, a blonde Bunnie wannabe hanging off his left arm. Poor bitch, she has no idea what she’s dealing with.

I waited in the cover of the alley, biding my time. A car cruised down the city street, its headlights snaking across the targets features. His dark eyes burned brightly, his fangs extended. The Bunnie babe looked up at him and he smiled, closing his mouth to hide the pearly white blades.

“Evangeline, do you have the target in your sight?” Ty’s smooth voice sounded in my ear.

Shit! He only used my full name when he was pissed at me.

“Affirmative, Tyler,” I said, using his full name to goad him.

“Well what’s he doing then? Jesus, Evangeline, you’re supposed to keep me informed.”

I rolled me eyes at his sharp tone.

“Take it easy, man,” Charlie’s voice sounded in the com in my ear. “I’m seeing everything from Evangeline’s camera. The target is still in the doorway, you can’t strike until he’s moved to a quiet location.”

I tipped my head to the heavens. Please, God, give me the strength to work with these two boneheads.

Every strike went down the same way. I scouted the target while Ty hung back and waited for the time to attack. Charlie sat in his cosy chair back at the Dissident – our headquarters – and watched the whole thing unravel through the dvr’s attached to Ty and me.

I lifted my arm and aimed at the target’s shin through the infrared. My custom made bodysuit clung to my arm. It looked a lot like leather, but it was a new material developed at the Dissident by the polymer scientists. It could withstand blades, bullets and anything with the potential to injure us, and it had a cool belt with every weapon and device I needed to take down supernatural beings. A hiss sounded from my sleeve and the tracker flew out of the alley, across the street, and attached to the targets trousers, just above his shin.

“Tracker’s attached. Target is none the wiser,” I said.

I waited a beat, no response from Charlie.

“Charlie, did you hear me?” I asked, drumming my fingers on my leg.

He responded straight away. “I heard you. Okay, tracker is online. Target is sill stationary.”

“Shit,” I hissed. I blew a small puff of air from my mouth. It billowed upwards through the crisp December air, tumbling until it disappeared.

“What?” Ty’s voice sounded urgent. “You don’t think he’s gonna do her there, do you?”

I pursed my lips. “Do her, Ty?” I asked.

“Yeah, turn her,” Ty said.

I shook my head, again, begging God to help me deal with Ty. Charlie interrupted my Silent prayer.

“Target is on the move, target is on the move.”

“Christ’s sake, Charlie, you only have to say it once,” I muttered, stepping out of the alley, in pursuit of the target.

“I heard that,” Charlie said.

“You were supposed to,” I said, shaking my head.

I moved with purpose, keeping eyes on the target. Crystallised water glimmered on the sidewalk, though I continued without hesitation, knowing I wouldn’t slip.

The target glanced behind him, eyeing me, before turning back around. Target and Bunnie babe disappeared around a corner.

“Target is running!” Charlie’s voice shrilled in my ear.


I broke out into a run, speeding around the street corner. The Bunnie babe lay ass down in a pile of garbage bags, her doe eyes darting side to side. Holding my arm out, I blew a puff of black sparkling powder from my hand, into her face. I didn’t stop to make sure it worked.

“Ty, I’ve knocked out the Bunnie, can you make sure she’s down?” I shouted, speeding down the sidewalk after the target.

“That what?” Ty shouted. I cringed.

“Charlie, fill him in,” I said, still in pursuit.

The targets jacket flapped in the breeze as he zipped through the streets. City lights and buildings went by in a blur as I matched his speed.

“Evangeline, you need to speed up,” Charlie said, after he explained the Bunnie to Ty.

“I know what I need to do,” I snapped. Trouble was, the target ran too damn fast.

He took a right into an alley. Seeing my chance, I vaulted up onto the top of the building to my right and sped across the roof. At the edge, I dropped into the alley below, right in front of the target, who slid to a halt, eyes wider than the moon above.

I straightened up, smoothing my hand through my long black hair. “Nice evening for a snack, hey, Martin?” I asked the target – Martin.

“I wasn’t going to eat her, I swear,” he said, holding his palms up.

“Sure, sure,” I said. “And you weren’t going to kill her either.” A slow smile curled my lips up.

Martins eyes narrowed, the moonlight glinting off his bright brown irises. He licked his lips. “Maybe I’ll snack on you instead. I’ve heard Immortal blood tastes sweeter than anything else.”

I shuddered at the thought of Martin putting his mouth anywhere near me. My adrenalin spiked and I raced at him, pulling an ornate mahogany stake from my belt. A gift from my trainer, Ray.

Yelling at the top of my lungs, I swung at Martin. He struck at the same time, flipping me in the air and avoiding the wrath of my stake. I landed on my feet in a crouch. Furious that he’d countered me, I roared and went at him again. Springing from the ground, I launched into the air and landed on his shoulders. Wrapping my arms around his neck, I twisted my body so my knees pressed into his back.

He pitched forward, swinging me over his head and slamming me onto the cold, hard asphalt. Pain exploded in my back and I sucked in air, struggling to breathe against the rock in my chest. Stunned, I rolled onto my front and tried to push myself from the ground. Unable to regain my composure, I collapsed, my face hitting the dirt.

Martin’s footsteps moved toward me.

“The mighty Elected. Not so mighty now, are you?” Martin sneered, bending over so his lips brushed against my ear.

My stomach rolled at the acrid aroma of blood and decay sweeping from his mouth. I curled my hand tighter around my stake.

“Eat shit,” I said, sweeping my arm out and knocking him to the floor. I sprang up with every intention and opportunity to nail the bastard in the heart to kill him, but Ty got there first. With a shrill cry, Martin’s body shook as Ty slammed his own stake into Martin’s heart. His body twitched once, then stilled, turning to a black light and dissipating into the darkness.

Ty looked over at me, beaming, pleased with himself. Not a strand of his perfect chestnut hair stood out of place, and, unlike my ragged breathing, his chest rose and fell like he hadn’t just ran seven blocks.

“I had him, Ty,” I said though gritted teeth.

“Pff, like hell you did, green eyes,” Ty said, joining me and clapping me on the back. “Admit it, I saved your ass, partner.”

“I was just about to finish him!” I said, pushing his shoulder.

I tried to pull away as he tickled my sides, but he wrapped his arms around my waist and lifted me, leaving my legs dangling off the ground.

“Put me down, you moron,” I squealed, thumping my fists against his sculpted chest while trying to contain my laughter.

“We make a damn good team,” he said, placing me back down, his dark brown eyes glittering. He had a cute indent in his chin and I poked my finger into it. “Hey,” he said, batting my hand away, a huge grin on his face.

“Can you two stop horsing around and get back here. I’m starving and the mess hall’s gonna close in like, a half hour,” Charlie said.

I rolled my eyes and raised my finger to the receiver in my tragus. Charlie must’ve seen me through Ty’s camera.

“Don’t shut me off, Evangeline. It’s corndogs tonight, and I love corndogs,” Charlie said.

Ty smirked at me as I pushed the receiver, shutting out Charlie’s voice. I waited a beat before turning it back on.

“You’re such a douche,” Charlie said.

“Chill, Charles, we’re on our way,” I said.

Ty reached out his hand to me and we ran, heading in the direction of the Dissident.

“Don’t call me that!” Charlie said.

I tipped my head back and laughed. My hair whipped around my face as Ty and I streaked through the streets of Swallow City. Releasing my hand, Ty sprung into the air, landing on the building above our heads. I sprinted to the left and mirrored his manoeuvre onto the building across from him. We laughed and whooped as we switched sides, somersaulting and crossing paths in the air.

Ty and I had been partners for two years, ever since we both completed our blackout and training at the Dissident and became Immortals. Immortals aren’t born – they’re chosen and Ty and I had been chosen at the same time. I loved him, with every piece of me, but relations were forbidden. We were the dissident’s prize assets – the Elected. Electeds know all of the world’s secrets. Our job, to remove supernatural threats, was our prime and only objective.

Removed from civilisation at age twenty-one, young men and women breathe in a mist that makes them forget their past lives. As well as being trained to kick supernatural ass, we’re also injected with a concoction of drugs that make us faster, stronger and more perceptive. Electeds are superhuman and can’t die – ever.

Blackouts last anywhere from fifty to eighty years, however long it takes for the last living relative that could identify us, to die. Ty’s blackout and mine lasted seventy-seven years and when we were introduced back into society, we were beyond happy and ready to serve our organisation for as long as they wanted us.

When the line of buildings made way to a green expanse, we landed in a field, crunching frozen blades of grass under our feet. Ty took my hand again and we raced towards the Dissident, a huge underground facility. The Dissident was our training ground, our workplace and our home.

Stopping at the edge of a lake, I let go of Ty’s hand and waited for Charlie to raise the door. The peaceful water began to ripple, tiny little lines at first, turning into furious waves as the shiny silver round hatch to our home burst from the water. Without hesitation, we jumped into the murky water and made a beeline to our home.