Shellie Neumeier's Blog
October 29, 2013
This post is an archived post with new links.
Someone once asked when I’d write a blog about the one creature who inspires me to write the most (besides God, of course). Today seems like a fine day for a snarky blog, so I’d like to take a walk inside my canine buddy’s head. (Go with me on this one).
Dasher is a 75 pound ex-racer. He’s a purebred Greyhound striped like a tiger. He was retired early last Fall and found his way into our hearts and home in December. He’s only two and a half, retired about five years prematurely. But he is the sweetest dog I’ve ever met.
Dasher, what was it like being a race dog?
Well, there’s not much to say, really. We were kept in our kennels most of the day. We were released to a larger outdoor kennel four times a day for 30 minutes each time. There would be four or five of us allowed to play in the space which was the size of an average living room. Then it was back inside to the kennel. Of course there was always training. That was fun. I’d get to play with the other dogs and chase their tails. Once in a while the trainers would walk us through the crowd to meet the people who came to watch the races, they smelled like hot dogs, cigarettes and soda. I love to smell things.
We hear you retired early, why?
Apparently, playing with the other dogs and chasing their tails isn’t recommended on the track. Something about a blue ribbon and a number. I don’t know, I got numbers. Usually there were a couple of them like a 1 followed by a 2 (for those of us that are already dreaming of the weekend, that was a twelfth place) . I thought that was pretty cool. The trainer didn’t.
Did you have a racing name?
Yup, I was dubbed Yo’ My Bust ‘Em Up. But when my family adopted me they named me after the fastest reindeer, since it was Christmas and all. I like the new name, it’s much easier to listen to. Especially since they yell it a lot.
What do you think about your new digs?
Awesome! They leave me chicken and fish on the counters. I usually wait until they leave to eat, though. No sense in eating in front of them, that would be rude. They also take me for walks when I tell them to and the short one, they call her ‘shark bait’; she sleeps with me on Friday nights. She makes a great pillow.
Any last words you’d like to leave us with?
Yeah. I just want to say thanks to all those great folks out there who adopt pets from shelters; pets like me. We really appreciate it!
For more information, check out Pets.Answers.Com
*Other interviews: Interview with a teen.
December 11, 2012
Oooh, I’m so excited to be a part of the Next Big Thing Blog Hop. Thank you for clicking over. I hope you’re having a wonderful time getting to know your favorite and newly favorite authors. Here’s a bit about me:
What is the working title of your book?
The title to my latest release isGrudges Not Included Grudges Not Included
Where did the idea come from for the book?
Boerne, Texas celebrates Christmas with a sweet tradition known as their Dickens Event (Link: http://www.tex-fest.com/regional/boerne.html). It’s a week-long celebration in true Dickens culture. When a friend described the nostalgia surrounding the event, Hannah’s story took shape.
What genre does your book fall under?
Grudges Not IncludedGrudges Not Included is a Christmas Christian romance novella.
Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
I think the best actress to play Hannah would be young and sweet, like Scarlett Johansson. Oh and the male lead would be great for someone who was mysterious like William Moseley or Jeremy Sumpter.
What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
When the baby-of-the-family steps in to manage her family’s German bakery she must balance the town bully’s plans to squash her business as she clears her former crush, the rootless boy the family believes betrayed them.
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
Grudges Not IncludedGrudges Not Included is my first self-published novella.
How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
The first draft took approximately three weeks to finish.
What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
Comparative titles may include Lori Copeland’s The Christmas Lamp or Sharon Gillenwater’s Love Wanted, A Christmas Novella.
What else would you like to share about your book? (Here’s the back cover copy)
In this contemporary Christmas tale, Arnwald Family Bakery prepares traditional German pastries and holiday goodies for the annual Boerne, Texas’ Dicken’s Event. Until tragedy strikes and the family bakery struggles without their patriarch at the helm.
The bakery’s success hangs in the shaky hands of the youngest family member when baker Drew Little returns home. Determined to clear his good name, Drew offers to save the bakery despite the owner’s accusations against him.
Hannah Arnwald knows Drew can save the bakery, but to hire him would mean going against her father, grandmother and sisters. Without an experienced baker, the store will fail. Does she dare hire him against her family’s wishes? Could she bear to lose him again if she doesn’t?
Here’s the link. Hope you have fun at your next Blog Hop.
December 1, 2012
Wow. December already. Well, I’m excited to report December brings a couple book releases. Just released this week:
(Grudges Not IncludedFree for your Amazon Kindle thru December 3, 2012)
In this contemporary Christmas tale, baker Drew Little’s past collides with his future when he returns to Boerne, Texas. Once an apprentice at Arnwald Family Bakery, Drew’s attraction to the owner’s young daughter distracted him from his duties and he found himself jobless and disgraced. Now he’s determined to clear his name.
True to their German roots, Arnwald Family Bakery, located in the center of historic Boerne, prepares traditional pastries and holiday goodies for the Dicken’s Event until tragedy strikes and the family bakery is left without their patriarch at the helm. The bakery’s success hangs in the shaky hands of the youngest family member.
Hannah Arnwald knows Drew has returned to Boerne. Armed with the intent to hire him as lead baker, Hannah must face the long held grudge of her family as well as survive the cunning competition of another local baker. Can she save a piece of Texan history without losing her heart in the mix?
From The Adventures of Ally and Cory series…
The Wishing RingThe Wishing Ring, book 1 (paperback to release later this month)
The King’s Seal, book 2 (ebook and paperback to release later this month)
October 2, 2012
Title: The New Recruit (The Mission League, book 1 of 4)
Subtitle: Mission 1: Moscow
Publisher: Marcher Lord Press
Genre: YA Suspense
Here is the back cover copy:
Forced to choose between military school and a Christian spy organization, skeptic Spencer Garmond signs on with the Bible geeks. But before he even boards the plane for Moscow, Spencer realizes this is no Bible club.
These guys mean business.
Stumbling onto a case involving a gang of homeless boys, a chilling tattoo, and the always beautiful Anya Vseveloda, Spencer struggles to find the faith needed to save the Mission League from enemy infiltration.
Here is the link to my website: www.jillwilliamson.com
Website for The Mission League Series: http://themissionleague.com/
Here is a short author bio:
Jill Williamson is an author of all things weird. She grew up in Alaska with no electricity, an outhouse, and a lot of mosquitoes. Her Blood of Kings trilogy won two Christy Awards, and she recently released Replication, a science fiction teen novel from Zonderkidz. Jill lives in Oregon with her husband and two children and a whole lot of deer.
September 23, 2012
Ready for a quick peek at book two in the Ally and Cory series (Book One, THE WISHING RING)? Here’s a bit from THE KING’S SEAL, releasing December 2012…
Isabelle wiped her hand across her forehead, plastering moist strands of dirty-blonde hair to her temples. “A guest, your Highness.”
Ally laid a calming hand on her maid’s wrist. “Of course there are guests, Izzy. This is the first day of my celebration month. Mother said there would be many guests. No need—”
“She’s different, ma’am. Not from Ur or any of its surroundin’ lands. Her skin is orange and her eyes…yella.”
Ally furrowed her brow. “Orange skin. And yellow eyes? What is she, a drawing? Izzy, is this a joke? Teasing the birthday girl before the party?”
“No, your Highness. This isn’t a tale. I’m not fibbin’. There’s a girl who speaks with your father in the throne room this instant and she is as I says, orange and yella. The queen sent me here. She says your ringing in will be delayed. I’m to sit with you until Margaret comes to get us.”
Ally jumped to her feet. “Delayed? No. I’ve waited forever to get my Teenth ring. It can’t be delayed. Orange girl or not.” Determination pressed her feet forward as Ally made her way to the door. “I’ll just have to speak with them, myself.”
September 21, 2012
Primarily a writer of southern fiction, Byron’s first novel, “Rockapocalypse: Disharmony of Justice”, is a tale of youthful dreams, adult peril, and Divine intervention by a few deceased rock icons. His second novel, Cold Currents, a southern literary mystery/thriller, is in the hands of his agent. He is currently working on his third novel, Bone Whispers,(a follow-up to Cold Currents), and a collection of short stories for future publication.
His short works of fiction have appeared in publications such as Aries: A Journal of Arts and Literature and Black Heart Magazine (e-zine).
A child of the sixties, his first viewing of The Wizard of Oz shaped his outlook of the world and erased any boundaries that could have stunted his imagination. He believes that a good tale should take you on an exhilarating adventure and leave you a bit more enchanted after you turn the last page.
*Byron is represented by D4EO Literary.
Now, on to the fun part…meeting the real Byron Suggs.
Is there a story behind your novel, Rockapocalypse?
Only my childhood (and six million other things.) I had a wonderful, middle-class childhood that spanned the cultural revolution of the Sixties, and part of the Seventies. The music of that era had a profound impact on me. All of my childhood memories have a certain song associated with them. But as with any child, I was not immune to social and political issues at the time: integration in the schools, war protest, Vietnam splashed into our living rooms on the evening news. Yet, amid all the turmoil, there just seemed to be something “hopeful” about all the change.
When I started writing RockapocalypseRockapocalypse, I had just entered my 50’s and felt compelled to take all of that and write a book. I wanted to write something that would allow me to create in abstracts versus cold, hard facts, and still give a sense of that time and place. I also wanted to go along for the ride and Pete provided that vehicle for me. Over a two year span, I wrote RockapocalypseRockapocalypse and revised it twice. I captured a lot of what I intended to, but when it was obvious my story wasn’t attractive enough for the literary agencies, I had all but resigned to put it in a bottom drawer.
Then it happened.
I met my current publisher at a local writers conference. I was going over my schedule when a lady across the table asked another attendee where a certain session was being held that my publisher was leading. I volunteered that information because I was attending that session. Fifteen minutes before the start, she wandered over and struck up a conversation with me. Finally, she asked to see a sample chapter. She loved it. This led to that, and in June 2011, I submitted a proposal to her publishing board. But the book was shot down.
Determined to tell my tale, I took a long hard look at what I had and sat down once again to breathe new life into it. I pushed into the future and wrote a present-day parallel story that wove through the core of the original book. What I ended up with was a compelling, action-filled story of faith, hope and love. Several months passed, I received an e-mail from her. She still wanted to publish RockapocalypseRockapocalypse! Nine months later my book was released and here we are.
What kind of books do you enjoy reading? (Book recommendations very welcome!)
I read a variety of things. It’s hard to list them all here, but there are some that hold no interest in me: pure romance, Sci-Fi (unless it has a more humanist storyline), books that get so deep in relationships that I’m grateful I’ve never had to deal with them at that level, books about “fads” in our culture, and current vampire themes. I say that because the most interesting vampires I read about or watched in movies were just that, vampires. Not the kind in books and film today. I don’t begrudge those that find those interesting. I simply don’t. But I won’t leave you high and dry. In the last year I’ve read the following authors: John Hart, Mitch Albom, Joe Lansdale, Lee Child, Stephen King, Preston/Child, James Lee Burke, and James Rollins just to name a few.
Have you read Travis Thrasher or Robert LiParulo? Great stuff!
Which character in your new release most interested you while you wrote? Why?
That’s a tough one. Peter Travers was at the core of this book, but at the end of the day I knew Pete too well, if that makes sense. He was too familiar to me. If I had to name one I’d have to choose between Margie McMillan and Arlo Hankshaw. Both evolved in totally different ways, but in ways that made sense when the end arrived.
What is your favorite season of the year?
I have several. Late Spring, early Summer and early Fall. The muggy “dog days of August”, and winter in general, do not rate very high on my list.
I’m with you there!
Are there spiritual themes you like to write about?
Good over evil. There are many paths to get there, but the end is the same.
Ooh and underdogs, right? Go Underdogs!
When is your next book due out and can you tell us about it?
My second novel, Cold Currents, is in the hands of my literary agent. It’s a mystery/thriller set in the piedmont of North Carolina.
“Thirty years after the shocking murder of Jenny Franklin, followed by the arrest and conviction of his brother Terry, Knoxville Detective Bobby Taylor returns to his North Carolina hometown of Clayton at his aging mother’s request. Reluctant to face his estranged father and make amends after blaming him for not doing more to save his brother, Bobby arrives to discover the head of another young girl has washed up on the banks of the wild Neuse River. Disgusted at the brutality and familiarity of the crime, he realizes the murderous, sadistic monster from his past has returned with a vengeance. His brother’s blood is now on the hands of those who failed to catch the real killer the first time around. Fueled by retribution, and eager to heal his past, Bobby’s determined to bring the true murderer to justice.
Armed with equal parts instinct and desperation, Bobby confronts his broken relationships while chasing a mysterious trail of death that spans thirty years and two continents. Obstacles, lies, and deception face him at every turn as he partners with a tough-as-nails female reporter and a reluctant Chief of Detectives to catch a resurrected killer and vindicate his family’s name. In the end, Bobby finds redemption in a way he could never imagine as the whispers of the river reveal the horrible secrets beneath her swift, cold currents.”
I’m currently working on my third novel, Bone Whispers, which I hope to complete by Spring 2013. It’s a follow-up to Cold Currents.
If you’d like to connect with Byron, you can find him here:
Thanks Byron and best wishes for an awesome release! Now, I’ll leave you with this…
September 17, 2012
I’m eager to share a couple new books that have either just released or will be releasing soon. I’m in the middle of Jill Williamson’s newest, The New Recruit: Mission 1: Moscow (The Mission League)The New Recruit and a review should be up soon. Check it out, when you get a minute. Another new author will be joining us this week. Byron Suggs’ debut novel, RockapocalypseRockapocalypse, releases 9/22. Watch for a post from him this weekend. Lots of exciting stuff there.
In the meantime, I’ve got a question for you. In the authorsphere, there’s a bit of buzz surrounding book trailers.
Ever watched them? Know what they are? Use them to chose your next read?
I’m curious. I’ve got two trailers out and am planning one for the Ally and Cory series (The King’s Seal, book 2 releases 12/2012) and I’d like to know what you think.
You’ll find a few book trailers (mine and a few friends’) embedded, just in case this is the first time you’ve heard about book trailers. So tell me, do you use book trailers when you choose the books you read?
September 4, 2012
Hi blog-friends! It’s been such a long time. I’m excited to announce a few new points of interest. Check the list below. In addition, I’ll be back to the blog now that the kiddos are back in school. For now, check out the links below and the new reviews listed under the Book Review tab above.
NextGenWriters (a site dedicated to bettering the writer’s craft of authors under 20) includes a three-part September event on branding and social media.
Barn Door hosts a look at my new hometown, Cincinnati, on September 7.
Proof, See the Evidence takes a deeper look at praying for others, even when it’s not asked for.
And the new book cover is in! The second book in the Adventures of Ally and Cory series, The King’s Seal, is here (releases December 2012). What do you think?
August 1, 2012
Is it August already? How many years have I started the month with that sentence? This year, I say it with a new fervor. Tomorrow, August 2, is opening day for the NextGenWriter’s Conference. What is that, you ask? Well, it’s an online, FREE writer’s conference for author’s under 20 (I know, I get so much flack from authors over 20 for this one, but hey, we’re talking about the next generation of literary leaders here…they need their own conference, don’t cha think?). Want to know how it works? Click here. Or who’s presenting? Here. Ready to register? Here. And of course, want to pick up one of the presenter’s books? Here.
If you’re an author under 20, you won’t want to miss it, and if you’re not, but know someone who is, please pass this along. Yeah, it’s that important. Now, let’s go make some history–NextGenWriter’s!
June 15, 2012
Curious as to what an online conference is? Well, go check out the explanation page for NextGenWriter’s Conference. Registration is open and attendance is filling up. Hope to see you there!