Guest Post: Behind the Scenes and Advice for Writers by Erin Rhew

I’d like to welcome Erin Rhew to the blog today to promote her fantasy trilogy, The Fulfillment Series (and other things), as part of The Rhew 2 Rhew blog tour. The Fulfillment Series looks like a good investment of your time, I’ll add, be sure to check it out. After you read her post, of course — and enter the drawing.

Also, this was supposed to post this on Monday, and I messed up the posting. I’d like to publicly apologize to Erin for the mess-up. Irresponsible is supposed to by a name, a philosophy of reading, not a description of the guy behind the blog.

Thank you to H.C. for hosting me today, and thank you to his readers for joining us!! <waves> Today, I’m here to talk about the writing and publication process. I think I have a bit of a unique perspective because I’m a published author, AND I work for a publishing company. PS. Stay tuned to find out about a Rafflecopter giveaway for a $50 Amazon gift card!!

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People always ask me when I knew I wanted to be a writer, but I didn’t really have that “ah-ha” moment. Since I was four and read my first book, I’ve been fascinated with the written word. At four, I also wrote my first poem. My grandparents run a car dealership, and I wrote a little rhyming poem about the cars on their lot. When I received serious accolades for it, the writer in me bloomed. I wrote in middle school and had a whole gaggle of girls who waited not-so-patiently for me to complete a new chapter. In high school, I continued writing and also took up acting, and in college, I continued to do both. After graduation, I ran a theater company, where I both acted and wrote plays. I did that for many, many years, and my novel writing took a back seat. But I eventually returned to my first love and started a novel. In fact, I’m STILL working on that novel. LOL! I’ve finished it, rewritten it, and I’m in the process of rewriting it again. But while that book marinated, another book emerged–three, in fact. And The Fulfillment Series was born. I assembled a group of friends, called the Dream Team, to help keep me on task (ADD and all).

6762080_origFrom right to left: Danielle Craver, Dawn Ward, Ginny Hunsberger, and Kim Sharp–I’m kneeling)

I wrote the trilogy in three months (yep!) with the help of my friend, Kim, who required a chapter a day from me. But editing is a much longer, more arduous process, especially if you’re a grammar nerd like I am. Once I’d self-edited, I sent it to beta readers and critique partners, and then I edited it again, I sent out query letters. Rejections came in, lots of them, with a few requests for partials and fulls sprinkled in. And then one day, as I stood in the pet store, it came…the offer! I *may* have jumped up and down and squealed right there in the middle of that pet store. LOL!

And the rest, as they say, is history. All three books of the trilogy have been published, and I’m pleased as punch about it. Now I have to return to my original book…apparently to be my magnum opus!

89930301 My first book. Wonderful cover created by Anita at Race-Point!

Publication

I think working at a publication company has a great deal for my writing. I’ve learned a lot about what to do and what not to do just by reading other people’s work and working with the fabulous group of editors we have on staff. The lovely Heather Powell Van Fleet taught me a whole lot about “showing versus telling” and “actions before words.” And I learned a lot from my husband’s editor, Anya Kagan, about the big picture and “talking heads.” For those of you who don’t have the ability to benefit from working in a publishing company, I say this: Talk to other writers and editors. Immerse yourself in the world of writing. Follow Twitter contests like #PitMad and see what storylines are being overdone (you’d be surprised how many are alike).

Here is some of my advice:

1) Edit, edit, edit. (As I write this, I know my post will have an error–LOL!) I’m a HUGE grammar nerd and will spot mistakes in your writing right away. You only get one chance to make a good first impression. If you’re not good with grammar, find a friend who is or hire an editor (but make sure they’re legit). You won’t be sorry.

2) Be friendly and stay “in the know.” Reach out to readers, bloggers, agents, editors, and other authors on social media platforms. Stay informed about what’s going on in the writing world.

3) Decide on your path ahead of time. Think about the publishing options available to you and pursue the one that works best for you and your work. Please don’t submit to small presses and turn down a contract because “you wanted an agent.” If you want an agent, go after agents. Self-publishing, small presses, and traditional publication are all equally valid means of getting your book into the world. But be aware of the potential downfalls of each path: use sound editors for self-publishing, don’t use vanity presses or “fake” agents, etc.

4) Always, always, always better yourself. Even the greatest writers still have stuff to learn. We can all better ourselves and our craft. Be open to suggestions and critiques. Don’t make the mistake of thinking your writing is perfect like it is; you can always improve.

Thanks for hosting me, H.C.! Now I’d like to share a little bit about my books (and my husband’s books) with you and your readers! Hint: Giveaway link coming soon!

For those that don’t know, I’m a young adult fantasy author who is married to adult thriller author, Deek Rhew. Together, we are “the Rhews,” and our street team is the Rhewination!

8659935_origDeek and Erin– Join the Rhewination! 😉

So, here’s a little bit more about me, Deek, and The Fulfillment Series:

The Prophecy (Fulfillment Series Book 1)

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Title: The Prophecy

Author: Erin Rhew

Publisher: BookFish Books

Cover Design: Anita at Race-Point

Available Now! Amazon Buy Link

Synopsis:

Growing up on a small farm in the kingdom of Vanguard, seventeen-year-old Layla Givens lives a deceptively tranquil existence. But her carefully constructed life quickly falls apart when she’s abducted by a religious zealot who proclaims her The Fulfillment of an ancient peace prophecy and whisks her away to marry her greatest enemy.

Wilhelm, Prince of the Ethereals, is reluctant to meet his new bride. He’s grown up believing Vanguards are evil, an enemy to fight and fear…not love. Can he set aside his prejudices and work alongside Layla to bring lasting peace after centuries of war?

Nash, a loner who has never fit in, carries a huge secret, one big enough to destroy both kingdoms. When he accidently meets Layla, he’s no longer content to live in the shadows, but he must resist his growing attraction–for her safety and for the longevity of the two kingdoms.

When Nash’s secret is revealed, a firestorm sweeps through both realms, with Layla at the center. Now she must choose between duty and desire while the fate of two nations hangs in the balance.

The Outlanders (Fulfillment Series Book 2)

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Title: The Outlanders

Author: Erin Rhew

Publisher: BookFish Books

Cover Design: Anita at Race-Point

Available Now! Amazon Buy Link

The Fulfillment (Fulfillment Series Book 3)

Title: The Fulfillment

Author: Erin Rhew

Publisher: BookFish Books

Cover Design: Anita at Race-Point

Available Now! Amazon Buy Link

About Erin Rhew

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Erin Rhew is an editor, a running coach, and the author of The Fulfillment Series. Since she picked up Morris the Moose Goes to School at age four, she has been infatuated with the written word. She went on to work as a grammar and writing tutor in college and is still teased by her family and friends for being a member of the “Grammar Police.”

A Southern girl by blood and birth, Erin now lives in a rainy pocket of the Pacific Northwest with the amazingly talented (and totally handsome) writer Deek Rhew and their “overly fluffy,” patient-as-a-saint writing assistant, a tabby cat named Trinity. She and Deek enjoy reading aloud to one another, running, lifting, boxing, eating chocolate, and writing side-by- side.

Connect with Erin Online!

For the latest and greatest, visit her web page:

www.ErinRhewBooks.com

 

About Deek Rhew

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Deek lives in a rainy pocket in the Pacific Northwest with the stunning YA author bride, Erin Rhew, and their writing assistant, a fat tabby named Trinity. They enjoy lingering in the mornings, and often late into the night, caught up Erin’s fantastic fantasy worlds of noble princes and knights and entwined in Deek’s dark underworld of the FBI and drug lords.

He and Erin love to share books by reading aloud to one another. In addition, they enjoy spending time with friends, running, boxing, lifting weights, and exploring the little town–with antique shops and bakeries–they call home.

Connect with Deek!


For the latest and greatest, visit his web page:
www.DeekRhewBooks.com

Rafflecopter Giveaway

Guest Post: Flying by Deek Rhew

I’d like to welcome Deek Rhew to the blog today to promote his thriller, 122 Rules (and other things), as part of The Rhew 2 Rhew blog tour. 122 Rules looks like a heckuva read, I’ll add, be sure to check it out. After you read his post, of course — and enter the drawing.

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I’m so excited to be on The Irresponsible Reader! Thanks for having me on, H.C., and hello to all you readers of The Irresponsible Reader!

Today, H.C. let me post on whatever I’d like to write about, so I’ll pick something near and dear to my heart: Flying!

To start off with, let’s spin up a little tune that can grace your ears while you peruse this post and the rest of H.C.’s blog.

When I was three, my family and I lived in Great Falls, Montana. If you know anything about that state, it’s famous for beautiful skies, open space, cold winters, and strong winds. We lived in a mobile home park high up, overlooking the Missouri river. One of the storms the area is so famous for came blowing through. Super high strong winds swooped around our trailer, rocking it on his frame. I, not liking to be cooped up, wanted to play outside. My mother told me not to go. That it was too stormy.

Of course, being three, I knew better, so I opened the door, grabbed the screen handle and twisted. To this day, I can still remember sailing over the front lawn thinking, This was not a good idea after all. It’s funny, years later, I wrote a scene in my short story, “Norman and the Demon,” which is very similar to this first memory.

So you see, flying and I go WAY back. If I had my druthers, I’d fly like Superman. No plane required and really not that much different than my stormy day back in Montana.

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Alas, that’s not very likely to happen anytime soon. But man would it be cool to fly to work, fly over traffic, and carry my beautiful bride to exotic destinations just by raising my arms and wishing to go there!

In high school, I wanted to follow my father’s footsteps and join the military.

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I wanted to fly! To see the world from the clouds and fight the bad guys like Maverick. Sigh, alas the military had no use for people who are colorblind. Something about the good guys are green on the radar and the bad guys are red. I don’t know, silly stuff.

To wrap up this segment, I’ll include the scene from Norman and the Demon I mentioned earlier. Enjoy!

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The civil servant grasp the handle on the heavy security screen, took a deep breath, and twisted. The door did not open. He pushed, but it refused to budge. He looked at Owen, who watched with a mixture of apprehension and sadness.

Norman tried again. Still nothing. Shoving harder, he threw his appreciable bulk against the door. One second, Norman Philip Templeton the Third, USPS delivery man and essential service provider for the government of the United States of America, stood red-faced and grunting. A heartbeat later, he had vanished as if a magician had commanded him to do so. Except no magician’s assistant ever squealed like a little girl who’d just found a spider in her shoe.

Caught in the guaranteed unbreakable glass, the gale force winds yanked the security door open. The screen’s hydraulic failed, disintegrated into a cloud of metal and rivets, and allowed the handle to smash through the bungalow’s siding. It hurled the dandy of a man, his cry becoming the primary soloist in the choir of winds, while he sailed over front yard as graceful as a flying manatee. Momentum and air pressure no longer capable of supporting such bulk, his impromptu trip ended, and he splatted unceremoniously in the middle of the rain-sodden lawn. The impact drove the breath from his lungs, removing his falsetto soprano from the choir at the crescendo of the concert.

Norman stared up into the dark, angry sky. Leaves and debris swirled and dove overhead like roving gangs of demented birds. The end had come. He would die here. Another soldier fallen while serving his country. The broken-hearted would weep during “Taps” as Marines lowered his casket into the frozen ground of Arlington Cemetery. He required no accolades, no statues or monuments. He only wished to leave his country a little safer—the children, women, and citizens of his great nation more secure—than when he joined it.

Norman shed a tear in sympathy as the scene continued and his partner fell to his knees—sobbing into the folded United States flag clutched to his breast. Ill miss you too, honey.

His dolorous mental screenplay abruptly ended when strong hands grabbed him under the armpits. Owen. The real life Owen—not crying but looking both frightened and angry at the same time—towered over him and dragged the sodden freedom fighter towards the safety of their bunker. The large man forded the civil servant across the lakes and rivers of their lawn and through the ruined threshold of the house. Owen dumped his life partner against the wall and leaned against the door, forcing it closed one small step at a time until he snicked the latch in place.

Thank you SO much H.C. for letting me share my history of flying! Readers, are you ready to learn a bit about our books and enter to win a $50 Amazon gift card? Woop! Let’s go!

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Rhew 2 Rhew Blog Tour – 122 Rules Book Blitz Extravaganza!
How’s that for a catchy title? What a crazy adventure this has been FIVE years in the making, and it has finally arrive: 122 Rules has been born unto the world. The stories I could tell just so I could tell you this story…well, let’s just say it’s been an interesting, educational, and life-altering adventure.

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This has been a grand journey, filled with hardships, fun, learning, and growth. But of all the things that have happened on the writing road, meeting the love of my life is the most unlikely and easily the luckiest, most blessed things to have ever happened to me.

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Ahhhh, it’s cold out here!
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Do ya feel lucky punk? Well, do ya?

Erin Rhew and I started out as critique partners, became friends, and now she’s my bride. She’s my best friend and partner in all things. Even if I don’t sell a single copy of my writings, I’ll always be a smashing success because I met Erin.

Book Blitz

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On this half of the Rhewination tour, I am visiting blogs all over the globe, from Australia to the farthest corners in Canada. Next week, on the second half of the tour, Erin will be gracing the pages of 50+ bloggers!

In addition, we are giving away a $50 Amazon gift card! Prepare yourselves to win!

122 Rules

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Today, we are announcing my adult thriller novel, 122 Rules.

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Synopsis
In his black and white world, Sam Bradford–former Marine turned government assassin–finally sees a speck of grey. He has always followed orders without question, but his latest assignment threatens to disrupt the precision of his universe and may either severe or redeem his last remaining sliver of humanity.

Using his mastery of the 122 Rules of Psychology, Sam hunts down everyone The Agency sends him to find and eliminates them. Just as he has his rifle scope focused on his latest victim, Monica Sable, a SoCal girl entangled with the mob, his long-dormant conscience reappears for a final performance…one last ditch effort to save the sinking ship of Sam’s soul. He’s killed innocents before, but tarries on pulling the trigger this time.

When Monica escapes his crosshairs and fumbles her way across the country in a pathetic attempt to elude capture, Sam gives chase. But he’s not the only one after her. Ruthless henchmen, hired by the mob, froth like bloodhounds and nip at Monica’s heels. Now Sam is faced with a choice: turn his back on the rules and jeopardize his way of life by helping her or join the pack and rip her to shreds.


What are readers saying?

122 Rules is a fast-paced thrill-ride, filled with rich characters living in an expertly woven world of mystery and suspense. Deek Rhew’s debut novel will take readers by storm, and keep them coming back for sequels.

​~Michelle K. Pickett, Bestselling and award-winning author of PODs and Unspeakable.

The perfect, fast-paced novel for fans of kick-butt heroines, creepy killers, and getting caught in the wrong place at the wrong time. An absolute must-read!

~Meradeth Houston, author of Travelers, An Absence of Light, and the Sary Society Series

Visit the 122 Rules Web Page

Visit Amazon and Goodreads!

While you’re on Deek’s site check out Birth of an American Gigolo.

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Synopsis

An old party girl shoehorned into domestic divaship, infuriated by her husband’s cheating and his holier-than-thou, tree-hugging, no-tits and no-hips girlfriend, inflicts her wrath by training a local boy in the fine art of seduction. She and her new boy toy turned love god start a gigolo business as a distraction for the neglected and mistreated housewives of Alabaster Cove.

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Take a selfie with your ebook or paper copy of Birth and post it on social media with the tag #BirthSelfie. We’ll post you on the Rhewination web site!

Deek Rhew

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Deek lives in a rainy pocket in the Pacific Northwest with the stunning YA author bride, Erin Rhew, and their writing assistant, a fat tabby named Trinity. They enjoy lingering in the mornings, and often late into the night, caught up Erin’s fantastic fantasy worlds of noble princes and knights and entwined in Deek’s dark underworld of the FBI and drug lords.

He and Erin love to share books by reading aloud to one another. In addition, they enjoy spending time with friends, running, boxing, lifting weights, and exploring the little town–with antique shops and bakeries–they call home.

Connect with Deek!
Don’t forget to enter the contest!


For the latest and greatest, visit his web page:
www.DeekRhewBooks.com

Next week be on the lookout for Erin’s:
The Fulfillment Series Blitz Extravaganza!

Erin Rhew’s book that started it all, The Prophecy!

 

Erin Rhew’s, The Outlanders!
Erin Rhew’s, The Fulfillment

Erin Rhew



Erin Rhew is an editor, a running coach, and the author of The Fulfillment Series. Since she picked up Morris the Moose Goes to School at age four, she has been infatuated with the written

word. She went on to work as a grammar and writing tutor in college and is still teased by her family and friends for being a member of the “Grammar Police.”

A Southern girl by blood and birth, Erin now lives in a rainy pocket of the Pacific Northwest with the amazingly talented (and totally handsome) writer Deek Rhew and their “overly fluffy,” patient-as-a-saint writing assistant, a tabby cat named Trinity. She and Deek enjoy reading aloud to one another, running, lifting, boxing, eating chocolate, and writing side-by-side.

 

Artwork

Authors, do you think the artwork for The Prophecy, The Outlanders, The Fulfillment, Birth of an American Gigolo, and 122 Rules is as stunning as we do? Visit Race-Point.com to find out how you can get the amazing Anita to work on your book as well!