Nicole Sobon's Blog

May 30, 2015

I ended up posting the cover for Is Love: The Ridley Collection over on Facebook earlier this week, but for those that may have missed it, I figured I'd post it over here as well.

As with most of my covers, this one was designed by Christa of Paper & Sage Design.

This series is something that came about while writing Submerged. (The original version.) I'd written the first line, with no clue what I actually wanted the story to be about, but in the end I found myself loving Ridley's story. It isn't one that is for everyone. The collections are short (all three collections will only run around 17k words total), but they do tell a complete story. The characters are also younger than most of my other characters. And it's more of a romance story than anything else I've written - yes, even Collide.

For those interested, you can pick up the first of three collection, Is Love: The Ridley Collection, by heading over here!

<3 Nicole 
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Published on May 30, 2015 09:00 • 10 views

May 25, 2015

It has been awhile since I've written something on here that didn't include bad news, so I'm super thrilled to be revealing the cover for Rebirth today!

This book is happening because of the fans that told me how much they loved McVeigh and wanted a chance to get to know him better. Rebirth should answer any and all questions readers may have regarding his true motivations during The Emile Reed Chronicles. Yes, he is a monster, but this book shows us who he was before that. The novel itself is a prequel set way before the events of The Emile Reed Chronicles, although the epilogue leads directly into Program 12 and Program 13.

Those of you that won signed copies of the cover, you should have them in about two weeks. I'm waiting on the prints to come in from Snapfish. Once they do, I'll go ahead and sign them, and then they should be in the mail within a few days after that.

I will be revealing the brand new cover for Is Love: Volumes 1-3, now titled Is Love: Ridley Collection, on Thursday. I meant to finish this series two years ago. Unfortunately, the bad feedback from most readers led to me losing my desire to finish the series. Thankfully, my desire to work on the series has come back and the next three volumes will be available later this year.

<3 Nicole
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Published on May 25, 2015 15:48 • 6 views

May 12, 2015

1. Quick Health Update: I'm a lot better than I have been in the past two years. Am I fully healthy? Nope. I'm still suffering from some health issues, but for the most part, things have been somewhat under control. Unfortunately, this means I'm now on six daily prescriptions, but hey, they're working. I did have a really bad day on Monday, where I was near going to the ER, but my primary doctor thinks she knows what the issue was, so as long as the medicine works, we should (finally) be in the clear soon.

2. We Are All Strangers: I started editing my poems last night, as well as selecting which short stories to include in this third - and final! - edition. I should have a cover to reveal shortly. I'm just waiting until the end of the month, as I want to make the Rebirth cover reveal a big deal.

3. Collide Update: I'm working on episode two alongside The Untold Stories. The plan is to have the second episode out ASAP. Now that I'm feeling better, I can finally focus on getting this story done. I do have to make some story changes in order to make Molly's spin-off novella work, but it should be done relatively soon.

4. The Untold Stories: The plan is to release episode two of Collide first, then The Untold Stories, followed by Rebirth. Everything after that is still up in the air as to when it'll actually be released. On the plus side? I'm loving The Untold Stories more than I thought I would. There's a character in the collection named Chloe that is one of my favorite characters to date. I can't wait for you all to meet her!

5. The Shadow Program: I meant to finish this during NaNo last year, but I never did. I want to finish it after I knock out Rebirth, as it's a companion story to Arabella . The goal is to have a cover to share by next month. As I will be self-publishing this story, I won't be publishing the rest of it on Wattpad.

6. Novella Ideas: I'm working on a novella project that I'm hoping to have ready for submission to a few indie publishers by July. I'm also reworking Decoding Evie to send over to some of them.

7. Sales: Both The Outbreak Duology and The Emile Reed Chronicles: The Complete Series will be available for only $0.99 until June 12th, 2015! Be sure to grab a copy of both if you haven't already. Or if you know someone that would like either collection, feel free to let them know. =)

Now off to get some writing done!

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Published on May 12, 2015 08:48 • 10 views

April 19, 2015

The plan was to post the entire first chapter from Grant's short story in The Untold Stories, unfortunately, that plan has changed.... only because I feel like crap and don't have it in me to finish editing it right now.

So here's some of the first chapter:

Chapter OneI glanced up at the monitors, trying to make sense of the information that sat before me. “How is that even possible?” I mumbled, reaching for the tablet that sat on my chair.“That can’t be right.” I tapped on the icon on the lower right hand side of the screen and zoomed in on the Program’s readings. She wasn’t supposed to react to the images. She shouldn’t have reacted to the images.But somehow, she had managed to do just that.A loud bang sounded from the hallway outside of the room shortly before Charles McVeigh came barging in. I could see the frustration on his face, the irritation in his eyes, as he attempted to keep his anger in check. “That wasn’t supposed to happen,” he said. “Thompson, I thought I’d made myself clear. You were not to draw Emile out. You were simply to implant these images within her programming.”I forced myself to focus, knowing that if I allowed myself to lose control, he’d begin to question me, and that was the one thing I needed to avoid. At all costs.I turned my attention back to the monitors, trying to retrace every step.I knew that I’d done everything right.I had performed this procedure numerous time.It had been implanted in my memory.And yet, even though I’d done everything correctly, something had still caused things go to go awry.McVeigh hovered over the Program, his eyes looking for something abnormal, something that would explain her readings, but I knew he’d find nothing. I’d done the exact same thing myself.As he moved in beside me, I pressed my tablet to my side, making sure to remind myself to remain calm. There were some secrets meant to remain hidden, I’d told myself. I was one of them.He glanced back over his shoulder, his eyes locking onto mine with burning questions – ones that I held no answers to. “Sir, I assure you that the system was functioning properly. I’m not sure what happened.”I knew the moment that the words left my mouth that they wouldn’t change his way of thinking. Charles McVeigh had made up his mind the second he’d entered the room.“Functioning properly?” McVeigh scoffed. “If that were so, Thompson, that Program would have had the proper files installed onto her hard drive.”I dropped my gaze to the tablet within my grasp. Tell me about it, I thought to myself.Something was different about this Program. I’d had an idea of what it could be, but I refused to accept it as truth. Surely that wouldn’t be the case. Would it? I asked myself.A snapping sound came from inside of the Pod as the Program’s hard drive clicked out of place. McVeigh moved in closer, hovering above the Program, meeting her stare as she opened her eyes. He pressed his finger to his bottom lip before speaking, “You need to fix this, or else she won’t be the only thing facing deactivation.”
On the health side of things:

I've been a bit better. I've mainly been focusing on work and blogging over here. (I try to keep busy writing, even when I don't feel like it.) I'm still having terrible headaches, and I'm still having dizzy spells and a general lack of energy. But my throat isn't closing - that's probably because I've started cutting dairy out of my diet - so that's still a plus.

I will start focusing more on writing starting this next week, which means you'll finally get some DEFINITE release dates from me soon!

<3 Nicole
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Published on April 19, 2015 15:29 • 15 views

April 1, 2015

These past six months have been absolutely horrible and chaotic and I just want to start this b apologizing to all of you…. Again.I figured everything would be settled by now. It isn’t.I figured the doctor would know what was wrong by now. They don’t.I went for an MRI on my brain on Friday – my doctor wants to be sure there’s nothing wrong – and I wasn’t able to do it. I’m claustrophobic and I have terrible anxiety. (This is something I’ve been pretty open with on here. It’s also a huge reason – along with money – as to why I haven’t attended a convention as an author. I’d make myself sick with fear.) We tried two different machines, and I just couldn’t do it, especially since the doctor said I’d be on the table for over an hour. I have to go back to my doctor now and find a place nearby that does an open MRI. And then I have to wait for my health insurance to approve it before I can go get the MRI done. To say that I’m stressed and at my breaking point would be putting it lightly. There’s only so much that I can handle. Being lightheaded, dizzy, and sick to my stomach every single day? That I can’t handle. Not to mention, I’ve currently had to revamp my entire diet due to my food allergies getting worse. On one hand, I’m okay with this as it’s forcing me to eat healthier. On the other hand, what I can eat is so limited right now that I’m going to need to go on vitamins in order to make it so that I’m not as sick. (I’ve also been dealing with anemia for about five-six years now too, which doesn’t help much.) I’m on a non-dairy diet, which is getting hard to adjust to, but it is helping with my throat. That’s one good thing: I’m not having as much trouble swallowing/breathing these days.But yeah, I’m nowhere near where I should be at health-wise.I keep getting terrible dizzy spells, my throat still closes from time to time, and I’m just generally always exhausted. Work takes it out of me. I am active on the Marvel fan blog I contribute to, but other than that? I’ve kind of cut everything off.That also includes my writing.I have been working on The Untold Stories off and on, but everything else? I start back on it, and then I completely stop for about two weeks before touching it again. I’m trying to push myself, I just don’t have the motivation to write right now.This is why I haven’t been around.This is why I haven’t released anything this year.I feel like a jackass for it, trust me.I had all of these plans for 2015… and we’re four months in and I’ve accomplished NONE of them.For this, I am beyond sorry. You guys don’t deserve to be kept waiting. So here is what I’m going to do: Collide (Episode Two) will be ready in a few weeks. I need to do another read through or two, do some more edits, and purchase a cover. (Fun fact? Doctor Appointments, MRIs, etc. are all super expensive… or else this would have been done weeks ago.) Once I post the cover, expect the eBook to follow about a week afterwards. The Untold Stories should follow after.
On a happier note? I have contacted both of my cover designers about projects I planned to have done a while ago. The cover for Rebirth will be ready next month. If you were an entrant in that giveaway on Facebook? Your signed print of the cover will go out late in May. (Please e-mail me your mailing address if you haven’t done so already.) As for the rest of the Emile Reed Chronicles covers, I’ve contacted Carrie about those. But she’s a writer too, a pretty awesome one at that, and I won’t have an idea of when those will be ready for some time. I don’t want to set a schedule for anything else for the rest of the year. All I can promise is that, after I release The Untold Stories, which will include The Program Manual, I will be focusing solely on the Collide series. Given that each installment will receive its own cover, those will either be released monthly or bi-monthly. It depends on how much these doctor visits continue to drain my bank account. As for what will come after? It’ll more than likely be Rebirth, as Christa will have the cover completed for that one in May, but I can’t promise anything. I do apologize for this crap. I think to make up for it, I’ll rework some of my old projects and go ahead and publish those so that you guys have something. (There are a ton of them.)I adore each and every one of you, and I hope to be around more soon.<3 Nicole
P.S. I apologize in advance for any errors. I didn't have my glasses on when I wrote this, and I honestly have no clue where the heck I put them.
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Published on April 01, 2015 18:55 • 14 views

March 14, 2015

I'm slowly easing myself back into things. I've been writing steadily for a few days now. I've started reading again. (I'm currently reading Dualed and really liking it.) And I'm easing myself back into working out now that I can finally move about for longer than an hour without feeling as though I'm about pass out. I know that doesn't sound like much, but given how I've been feeling for the past month (heck, the past two years, honestly), all of this is a big deal to me.

Anyway, I made the mistake of visiting Book Outlet yet again and picked up a few books.

The Nightmare Affair (The Arkwell Academy #1) by Mindee Arnett
Every Day (Every Day #1) by David Levithan
Lies Beneath (Lies Beneath #1) by Anne Greenwood BrownThe Diviners (The Diviners #1) by Libba Bray

Salvage (Salvage #1) by Alexandra Duncan

These are all books I've been wanting to read for some time, so I'm pretty excited.

  Some eBooks that I purchased:
Slip (Slip #1) by David Estes 
Winter (Four Seasons #1) by Frankie Rose

I've also decided to start including my comics haul during this posts again, so here are a few of the comics that came in recently. (I order mine online through Midtown, as I don't enjoy going to my local comic book shops, so I'm usually always behind.)

Spider-Gwen #1 -- I actually purchased multiple copies of this because I loved the variant covers.
All New Hawkeye #1
Spider-Woman #5 -- featuring Jess' brand new costume!

I'm off to write and read.
If you're waiting on a package from me, they've all been sent. Let me know if you HAVEN'T received your items within two weeks from today.

<3 Nicole
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Published on March 14, 2015 21:00 • 29 views

March 8, 2015

My signed copies of The Return & Wicked came in this week! I actually forgot that I'd ordered these, so it was a nice surprise to come home to the other day.

Update Time:I revealed the cover for THE OUTBREAK DUOLOGY over on Facebook yesterday. In case you missed it, here it is:

As for health updates.... things were going better, but now I'm sick, so it's a step backwards. The migraines are back, and I'm having trouble swallowing again. Still, I expect to be back to reading/writing/blogging this week. Maybe not to the extent that I'm used to, but I won't be taking another break. I do go for an MRI on my brain in two weeks, so I'm hoping they'll have a better idea what is going on then.

<3 Nicole
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Published on March 08, 2015 15:12 • 19 views

March 6, 2015

It's nearly 11PM at night, and I'm just now posting the spoilers I promised all of you earlier today. My apologies. I actually left work later than intended and didn't get home until 9PM. On the plus side? Better than never, right?!

First up, here's a teaser from THE UNTOLD STORIES featuring Chloe, aka the subject with the Vesta Corp scientists as her landlord.

There were few things I dreaded as much as rent day.You were the idiot that decided to live in downtown Seattle, I reminded myself.As I made my way to the leasing office, with the last bit of my cash stuffed away in an envelope for rent, I couldn’t help but to feel as though someone was watching me.At first, I thought I was being paranoid. After all, I had a habit of thinking everyone and everything was out to hurt me – a side effect of a traumatic experience as a teenager.But this felt different.

Now, I should note that this has not been fully edited. I've just started working on edits, so chances are this text will change a bit upon publication, but for now, here's your first look at a BRAND NEW (she didn't have a name in the series, so she's brand new as far as I'm concerned) character being properly introduced into The Emile Reed Chronicles.

Now, onto COLLIDE: EPISODE TWO. Due to medical expenses, I don't know that I'll be able to purchase individual covers as planned, so for now, I'm just going to continue using the same cover from the first episode.

Here's a quick look at EPISODE TWO (which will pick up exactly where EPISODE ONE left off):
I felt the phone slip from my fingers as I sat in shock atop my bed. Although I tried, I couldn't bring myself to move.
My chest was heavy as I struggled to catch my breath.
This couldn't be happening.
And one final note for SUBMERGED fans, I'm happy to say I contacted one of my lovely cover designers to work on the cover for THE OUTBREAK DUOLOGY! So the omnibus should be headed your way in about a week. I just need to finalize the short stories for the eBook. There will be a paperback edition down the road. (Given that sales on THE EMILE REED CHRONICLES: THE COMPLETE SERIES are pretty much non-existent, I'm holding off on releasing the paperback edition of this series.)
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Published on March 06, 2015 20:03 • 21 views

February 28, 2015

I ended up going to my local library's book sale last weekend because I needed to get out of the house. I figured it was close by, so if I got dizzy or sick, I'd be able to get home quickly. (Other than work, I've pretty much been confining myself to my bedroom for the past two weeks. That's how bad my headaches and how bad the dizzy spells have been.) I didn't stay too long, but I was able to grab a few good books during my quick trip. The rest were all from Book Outlet... except for The Return & Ready Player One.

From the library book sale:
Wonder Woman by S.D. Perry & Britta DennisonThe Nimble Man (The Menagerie #1) by Christopher Golden & Thomas E. Sniegoski Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter by Seth Grahame-SmithThe Wizard Heir (The Heir Chronicles #2) by Cinda Williams Chima The Warrior Heir (The Heir Chronicles #1) by Cinda Williams ChimaClockwork Angel (The Infernal Devices #1) by Cassandra Clare I'm not a big DC fan. I know, I know, I just prefer Marvel, but even I can admit the awesomeness that is Wonder Woman. This book was only $0.80, so I couldn't pass it up! As for Bared to You, a friend of mine recommended the Crossfire trilogy to me since I don't care for Fifty Shades of Grey, so I was excited to find the first book at the library's used book sale for only $1!

From Book Outlet:
Nightshifted by Cassie AlexanderThe Marriage Bargain by Jennifer ProbstBrain Camp by Susan Kim, Laurence Klavan, and Faith Erin Hicks Scan by Walter Jury and Sarah FineExtraction by Stephanie DiazElusion (Elusion #1) by Claudia Gabel and Cheryl Klam From Amazon:
The Return by Jennifer L. ArmentroutFor some reason, I have yet to finish Sentinel. I started it, and then I put it down for some reason. I'm going to have to finish it soon so that I can read this, because I love Seth.

From LootCrate:
Ready Player One by Ernest ClineThis is actually my second copy of this book, so I'll probably end up giving it away to my brother or something. I started reading this book back in October of last year, and I was actually really enjoying it, so I'm going to have to pick it back up now. Also, I'm going to need LootCrate to include books more often.

What books did you get this week?

<3 Nicole

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Published on February 28, 2015 21:00 • 22 views
Please note, this short story has not been edited. I'm having trouble staying in front of the computer for long periods of time, so sitting in front of it for long periods of time isn't going to happen.

This is a short story. It will not be expanded upon. I just wanted a chance to focus on Bradley and Kyle's relationship before the events that take place in STOUTHEARTED, while also showcasing what Bradley was going through before he left on his rescue mission. I wanted it to showcase their relationship before everything went to hell, so this is a scene that is a lot lighter than the one that takes place in STOUTHEARTED:

“STOUTHEARTED Short Story”BRADLEYSilence surrounded me as I slipped outside of my living quarters, immediately drawing me back to the Outbreak. It was haunting, the silence, the way it clung to the air – the way it made you even more alert to the world around you.I closed my eyes and leaned against the building, crossing my arms over my chest.“So much has changed,” I mumbled.And it had. Everything that I’d known before the Outbreak seemed to get swallowed by the darkness. What little I’d managed to keep safe – Kyle – could leave me at any moment. We kept sending men out on rescue missions, and it seemed as though each time, less and less of them made their way back home. Kyle’s turn was coming soon, and I wasn’t ready to lose him.A few feet away, the sound of a twig snapping beneath the weight of a booted foot alerted me that I wasn’t alone. “I was wondering where you were,” Kyle’s voice tore through the silence.“I needed to clear my head,” I answered. “Why? Did you really miss me that much?”“Oh, but of course,” he teased. “What’s going on? You haven’t seemed like yourself all day.”He reached up and pulled my arms free, entwining his fingers with mine as he stood in front of me. Almost immediately, my body reacted to his touch. With him, I felt safe. With him, I felt at home. “You’re trying to distract me, aren’t you?”His lips rose into a smirk as he leaned forward and pressed a quick kiss on my cheek. “It’s working, isn’t it?”I lowered my head and smiled, knowing that if I meant his stare I’d give into him. “You know what’s wrong, Kyle. How many men have we sent out now? How many of them have returned?”Kyle released one of my hands and lifted his hand to my chin. “Hey, look at me.” He gripped my chin firmly within his grasp. “I’m not leaving you. Do you hear me? You can’t get rid of me that easily, love.”Before the Outbreak, I would have believed him, but afterwards? I knew better than to think that anything was guaranteed. Life was fleeting. We were pieces of a bigger story, one that would eventually come to an end, so we had to take what we could when we had it. And now that I’d had Kyle, I wasn’t willing to send him off into the unknown.The world out there? It hadn’t fully recovered from the Outbreak. Namely the East coast. The land was barely clinging to life. We didn’t know what to expect. The Hovercopters we’d sent out there with our men had never returned. We’d lost track of them shortly after they’d landed.All we knew was that, whoever was out there? They had come to expect us.By continuing to send our men out there, it was basically accepting a suicide mission.“I’m just worried, Kyle. We don’t know what’s out there. We don’t know if it’s a trap. All we know is that our men haven’t come back, and we don’t know what happened to them.”“That’s exactly why I need to go,” he answered. “Someone needs to find them and bring them home.”“That someone does not need to be you, though,” I countered.Maybe it was selfish, but I didn’t care.When you managed to lose everything else that you cared about? You did everything you could to hold onto what little remained. Everything.Kyle pressed his forehead to mine and leaned in, his warm breath beat down on my face as he spoke. “You’re right, it doesn’t have to be me, but it’s my turn, Bradley. Just like it’ll be your turn in a few months. This is our job. This is what we choose to do. I love you, and you know that, but if I can, I’m going to bring our guards home.”He didn’t allow for me to speak as he grabbed a hold of my chin and leaned in. His lips met mine in a frenzy, immediately overpowering all worry in my mind. When I was with him? When his lips met mine? Nothing else mattered.I wrapped my arms around him and pulled him closer. I felt his heartbeat pounding against my chest, mimicking my own. Kyle pulled away suddenly, a grin wide on his face. “Let’s go back to bed, okay?”“You are the king of distractions,” I joked. “I’m not dropping this conversation that easily. I’m not going back to bed until you promise me you’ll come back.”It was stupid. I knew that his promise would mean nothing, but I still needed to hear it.I needed to believe that he’d do everything he could to ensure he’d make it back to me.I needed to believe that he still stood a chance at succeeding where the other guards had yet to succeed.I needed him.“I’ll be fine,” he promised. “I’ll be back before you even have time to miss me.”I’ll be back before you even have time to miss me. His words repeated in my mind as I stared back at him. “Okay,” I answered. It wasn’t much, but it would have to be enough. “Until then, I’m not letting you out of my sight.”Kyle tightened his grip on my hand. “Trust me, I’m counting on that.”
Please do not post this story anywhere else. It is ONLY meant to be posted here on my blog. It'll also be included in the omnibus edition of THE OUTBREAK DUOLOGY, which I'm still writing more bonus content for.

<3 Nicole
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Published on February 28, 2015 16:31 • 24 views

Nicole Sobon's Blog

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