Saturday 26 August 2017

Guest Author Marjorie Mallon of England

A great day for the Scribbler! Marjorie Mallon is our featured guest this week. She is an author's dear friend, a kind and generous sharer.

I’m delighted to be a guest on Allan Hudson’s blog South Branch Scribbler. I have some fabulous news to share with you, the kindle copy of my book – The Curse of Time #1 Bloodstone releases today, Saturday August 26th. You are all invited to a fun on-line party on my blog: Facebook and on social media. The Curse of Time is a middle grade/YA Fantasy set in Cambridge, England. I promise that the story will appeal to a wide range of age groups who love an imaginative, magical story so whether you are a young teen, an older teenager or an adult who has never grown up there will be something you will enjoy. I promise. Just because it says YA don’t conclude that the audience for the book or the party going age is restricted! Please join me on this long awaited day; I’m so excited to say that I’m an author. It truly is a dream come true.

And now, meet Marjorie Mallon and read an excerpt from her novel.

I am a debut author who has been blogging for three years: My interests include writing, photography, poetry, and alternative therapies. I write Fantasy YA, middle grade fiction and micro poetry - haiku and tanka. I love to read and have written over 100 reviews:

My alter ego is MJ - Mary Jane from Spiderman. I love superheroes! I was born on the 17th of November in Lion City: Singapore, (a passionate Scorpio, with the Chinese Zodiac sign a lucky rabbit,) second child and only daughter to my proud parents Paula and Ronald. I grew up in a mountainous court in the Peak District in Hong Kong with my elder brother Donald. My parents dragged me away from my exotic childhood and my much loved dog Topsy to the frozen wastelands of Scotland. In bonnie Edinburgh I mastered Scottish country dancing, and a whole new Och Aye lingo.

As a teenager I travelled to many far-flung destinations to visit my abacus wielding wayfarer dad. It's rumoured that I now live in the Venice of Cambridge, with my six foot hunk of a Rock God husband, and my two enchanted daughters. After such an upbringing my author's mind has taken total leave of its senses! When I’m not writing, I eat exotic delicacies while belly dancing, or surf to the far reaches of the moon. To chill out, I practise Tai Chi. If the mood takes me I snorkel with mermaids, or sign up for idyllic holidays with the Chinese Unicorn, whose magnificent voice sings like a thousand wind chimes.
An Excerpt from The Curse of Time. Book One - The Bloodstone. 
(Copyright is held by the author. Used with permission)
Puzzle Piece 1: The Invitation 
An unexpected invite,
Such a mystery,
To explore and discover,
A hidden cottage of light. 
I found it to be a mystifying situation. An unnatural stillness seemed to linger after many days of storms. Today, the sky reminded me of a painting. It appeared too perfect, too bright, too still, a picture landscape with no beginning or end. Instead, the vault of heaven spread out toward an endless grey forever, as if seeping around the edges of an untamed watercolour bleeding into the rest of the day. Even so, the sight filled my heart with promise, a ray of hope in an otherwise dull morning.
The quietness of my contemplation came to an abrupt end. I
heard the sound of an envelope crashing through the mail box. I jumped at the clatter. The letter landed on the floor as the sound of a thousand crystal chandeliers echoed throughout the house. I rushed to retrieve the envelope and turned it this way and that. I couldn’t find an address label and wondered if the note had been hand-delivered. Who could this message be for?

I stood puzzling over this peculiar circumstance when out of nowhere my name: Amelina Scott appeared in bold writing. I watched wide-eyed as the final character of my surname was spelled out in a delicate font. I tore the dispatch open and inside I discovered a card printed on the finest paper with gilt edges and embossed calligraphy. There were few details, just an instruction to visit:
Crystal Cottage, River Walk, Cambridge, and the following added at the bottom as an afterthought: R.S.V.P – Not required. We promise to be welcoming when you arrive. When you’re ready, you’ll discover us…
            I shook my head in disbelief. Nothing good ever happens to the Scott’s so this invitation might look magical, but surely it must be nonsense. Weird messages from unknown sources count as dubious junk mail, the way I look at it.
            I grabbed the envelope and attempted to rip it into pieces, but it wouldn’t tear. With a mind of its own the envelope curled its edges in protest. I searched in a drawer until I found scissors and tried to cut the invite. That didn’t work either. My hand ached, but the invitation endured intact as if mocking me.
            Frustrated, I tried to cut the invitation again. A sputtered cursing sound filled the room even though I was alone. On my third attempt, I tore into the card with success. (I think it let me.) And once again, I perceived a noise, an angry murmur, and then nothing. Quiet descended in the room, so I threw the torn parts into the bin.

            Finally satisfied that the annoying issue with the strange invite would no longer plague me, I brushed my hands together, and picked an apple out of the bowl on the kitchen counter, polished it on my jumper and then took a bite. In no time my hunger had abated, and as I chucked the core towards the bin, I registered a chuckle. I stopped, my feet rooted to the ground as a feeling of certainty filled my soul. I knew what to expect. I have no idea how I did, but I could see the image in my mind, the invitation had reformed. The invitation was playing games with me! I peered in the rubbish, and there I saw the envelope, connected in one perfect, unblemished piece. What the heck?
Summary by the Author.

On Amelina Scott’s thirteenth birthday, her father disappears under mysterious circumstances. Saddened by this traumatic event, she pieces together details of a curse that has stricken the heart and soul of her family.

Amelina longs for someone to confide in. Her once carefree mother has become angry and despondent. One day a strange black cat and a young girl, named Esme appear. Immediately, Esme becomes the sister Amelina never had. The only catch is that Esme must remain a prisoner, living within the mirrors of Amelina's house.

Dreams and a puzzling invitation convince Amelina the answer to her family's troubles lies within the walls of the illusive Crystal Cottage. Undaunted by her mother’s warnings, Amelina searches for the cottage on an isolated Cambridgeshire pathway where she encounters a charismatic young man, named Ryder. At the right moment, he steps out of the shadows, rescuing her from the unwanted attention of two male troublemakers.

With the help of an enchanted paint set, Amelina meets the eccentric owner of the cottage, Leanne, who instructs her in the art of crystal magic. In time, she earns the right to use three wizard stones. The first awakens her spirit to discover a time of legends, and later, leads her to the Bloodstone, the supreme cleansing crystal which has the power to restore the balance of time. Will Amelina find the power to set her family free?

A YA/middle grade fantasy set in Cambridge, England exploring various themes/aspects: Light, darkness, time, shadows, a curse, magic, deception, crystals, art, poetry, friendships, teen relationships, eating disorders, self-harm, anxiety, depression, family, puzzles, mystery, a black cat, music, a mix of sadness, counterbalanced by a touch of humour.

Marjorie's links.
My blog – for information about new releases, photos of main characters/character              interviews, book reviews and inspiration:
Twitter: @Marjorie_Mallon and Twitter: @curseof_time
I have devoted the past few years to writing over 100 reviews on My Goodreads Review Account, and on my blog to help support traditional and indie writers.

Thank you Marjorie for being our guest this week. Wishing you tremendous success with this series.
A very big Thanks to you - the visitor. Please leave a comment and make us smile!
Watch here for more news about my newest novel soon to be published!!!!!!!

Saturday 19 August 2017

Guest Author & Blogger Janice Wald of An Insider's Guide to Building a Successful Blog.

Janice Wald is an author, a freelance writer, a blogger and a blogging coach. She blogs at Mostly where she shares tips for bloggers and marketers. Wald has been included in over thirty expert interviews and interview panels. Her blog was nominated for the 2017 Most Informative Blog Award at the London Blogger’s Bash. She recently published AN INSIDER’S GUIDE TO BUILDING A SUCCESSFUL BLOG ( available on Amazon.
She has agreed to answer some questions for a 4Q Interview.

4Q: You have written An Insider’s Guide to Building a Successful Blog. Please tell us how this came about.
JW: It was always my dream to be a published author. Of course, I never believed in my wildest dreams it would come to fruition.
After I started blogging for about a year, people suggested I combine my blog posts into an ebook. I couldn’t decide if it should be about blogging or social media since my blog post articles contain tips for both.
To find out what the members of my email list would be interested in reading a book about, I polled them.
They indicated they’d be interested in reading a social media tips ebook, so that became the plan.
However, the longer I spent compiling my posts, the clearer it became that there was tremendous overlap between the two topics.
For example, I wrote an article on the best times to blog on social media. Would that go in a social media tips book or a blogging tips book?
My publisher solved the dilemma by changing the title and combining the topics into one book. It was originally going to be called YOUR ONE-STOP GUIDE TO SOCIAL MEDIA.
She actually gave me several choices that fit the combined content. I chose AN INSIDER’S GUIDE TO BUILDING A SUCCESSFUL BLOG.
I hope it’s okay if I give my amazing publisher a shoutout here. I’d recommend Lois Hoffman to anyone planning on publishing an ebook. Her contact information is

4Q: Your website provides valuable information for bloggers. Tell us about it.
JW: Thank you so much for calling my tips valuable.
My mission is to help bloggers. Although it started out to help new bloggers, many of the bloggers that started blogging when I started writing are no longer new.
Therefore, my tips have evolved. Instead of solely being for new bloggers, they are now for bloggers of all experience levels.
Many bloggers go on to market their goods and services. For that reason, in addition to blogging, social media, SEO, productivity, and technology tips for bloggers, I also write marketing tips for bloggers as well.
I realize many of your readers are writers. I also offer writing tips at my blog. Of course, there is overlap. Bloggers are writers, and many authors are required to have blogs.
4Q: Please share a childhood memory or anecdote.
JW: I would like to share one that relates to my blogging passion.
When I was younger, I considered various professions. I was torn between being a lawyer like my father or a teacher. My father told me lawyers needed extremely strong writing skills. Not having enough confidence in my writing led me to choose teaching. I thought I could teach writing as an English teacher and share my passion for writing that way.
After my children went to college, I completed my Master’s Degree in Education. One of my university professors told me I was the strongest writer in the program!
Confidence in hand, I began my blog and have been blogging ever since I graduated.

4Q: If you could tell us one important thing about our blogs, what would it be?
JW: Can I share two? The first is patience is vital to the success of any blogger. Trust me. I do not say this lightly since I am not the most patient person. If we want success, we’d prefer to have it sooner than later. Other than the rare exception, it takes a great deal of work over a long period of time to build up a blog. Success, for most of us, does not come over night. As soon as I heard that blogging is a marathon not a sprint, I relaxed and enjoyed the ride.
My second tip is related to the first. Part of that work toward blogging success involves networking. Network by commenting, network by Googling top blogs in your niche and networking there. Try to be among the earliest commenters. When you network, suggest people check out your blog. Often, it just won’t occur to people unless you mention it.
Allan, thank you for having me on your blog as your guest.

Thank you Janice for sharing your thoughts on the Scribbler.

For those interested in contacting Janice to help with your blog, go __ 
Link to my blog: http://mostlyblogging .com
New subscribers who sign up through this link receive a PDF of free blogging tools http://www.mostlyblogging/enjoy-my-guest-post-heres-what-to-do-next/


A huge thank you to my visitors that drop by the Scribbler. Please leave a comment before you go.

Watch here for more details about the newest Drake Alexander adventure novel coming soon!

Saturday 12 August 2017

Guest Author Vashti Quiroz-Vega. 4Q Interview & An Excerpt

The Scribbler is pleased to have Vashti as our guest this week. It is her second visit to the SBS. She is an accomplished author and an award winning blogger. On her first visit she shared a short story - A Time to Mourn and a Time to Dance. If you missed it you can go here 

This week she has been kind enough to share her thoughts in the 4Q Interview as well as an excerpt from her just-released novel - The Fall of Lilith

****Until the 15th of August, Vashti is offering her novel for the crazy low price of $0.99.  Go here!

4Q: You recently shared a cover reveal for your latest work. Tell us about The Fall of Lilith.

VQ: The Fall of Lilith is an epic tale with dark elements about angels for an adult audience (18+). It is the first installment of my Fantasy Angels Series. The characters in this story are angels depicted in a very unique way. It is a story of many twists, surprises and a bit of controversy.

Structurally, The Fall of Lilith is divided internally into two books, BOOK I – Heaven and BOOK II – Earth in one volume, so you get two books for the prize of one.

This is the BLURB


“I merely assisted you in doing what you desired all along.”


So says Lilith, the most exquisite of the angels. The two most important pledges an angel makes to God are those of obedience and celibacy, and dire consequences await any who break their oaths.

At first, the angels are happy in their celestial home, learning and exploring together. As they grow older, though, Lilith begins to question these pledges, which now seem arbitrary and stifling. Her challenge of the status quo leads to disagreement, jealousy, and strife among her peers. As the arguing and acrimony grow, lines are drawn and sides are chosen. Is war inevitable?

Filled with robust characters, incredible landscapes, and exciting action, The Fall of Lilith is an epic tale of seduction, betrayal, and revenge.

Free Will involves asking difficult questions and making hard choices, choices that require strength and sacrifice. These decisions can tear apart friendships and cause rifts between allies.

 They can even threaten the foundations of Heaven.


4Q: What is it about the supernatural that inspires you?

VQ: I grew up in a religious home, attended private school and went to church regularly with my parents. I read many religious books. I also read many fairy tales and mythology books. From a very young age I was intrigued by supernatural beings, especially angels and I often wondered what they were like, since the bible doesn’t say much about them. The combination of all of this is what inspired me to write The Fall of Lilith.

4Q: Please share a childhood memory or anecdote.

VQ: I began reading, writing and storytelling at an early age. I remember making comic books and selling them for a quarter in elementary school. My History teacher caught me; she gave me a look and asked me what I was doing. When I showed her the comic book I had made she looked through it and told me to wait until after class to sell it and then she told me to increase the prize because I was selling it too cheap. Ha, ha!

4Q: Please tell us where you are most comfortable writing your stories and what does the near future hold for Vashti Quiroz-Vega.

VQ: I enjoy setting up my laptop on the dinning room table. It’s a nice open area and I have a great view of my back yard (I live on a golf course).

Right now I’m busy trying to spread the word about The Fall of Lilith. I am also working on the 2nd instalment of my Fantasy Angels Series tentatively called, Dracúl, which follows where The Fall of Lilith ends.
An excerpt from The Fall of Lilith.

Before He created the universe, God was present. Alone and bored in Heaven, He decided to create angels––celestial beings to serve as companions. When God formed them, He made them perfect. He then endowed them with free will so they might choose their own way, making them somewhat unpredictable––and more interesting.  

There are three realms of Heaven: Heaven Most High where God resides, Metá Heaven, and Floraison, the lowest realm of Heaven where God placed the angels. Different dimensions separate these realms and only God traveled between them as He pleased. 

The angels were child-like when God first made them. A delicate brilliance emanated from within each one. They were formed with two small white wings, which carried them across the vast expanse of Floraison quickly and without much effort. God clothed the angels because He desired to show distinction between the superior celestial beings and the other creatures that roamed the lowest realm of Heaven. There were many strict rules in God’s system of law, as He held angels at higher standards than any other creature. The two most important vows of an angel were obedience and celibacy. 

Although the young angels bore many similarities early on, they developed distinct personalities and traits due to their free will. God also promised each angel one or more special ability, which in time they would develop and learn to control. What divine skill they would acquire and when was as individual as they were.  

There was no need for a sun, moon, or stars to give Floraison light. God’s splendor lit the lowest realm, and the skies were beautiful beyond compare. There was no true darkness where the angels lived. In Floraison’s unit of time there was brillante, when the light was at its most intense and nightglow when at its dimmest. There were many trees and meadows adorned with colorful flowers that emitted fragrances evoking happiness and vigor. Magnificent creatures abounded, large and small––perfect in every way and pleasing to the senses. Some of these creatures were prototypes for beings God created on different planets, and others were unique to Floraison.  

The River of Life, a pure river with crystalline healing waters, flowed between realms and proceeded from God’s throne room. The chamber was accessed through a portal that led to Metá Heaven where God’s presence could be reached. Only by His expressed permission could one cross this portal. This hall was aglow with the most exquisite light ever seen, and it was in the throne room God passed laws and judgments.  

There were fruit trees, root vegetables, bush berries, and many more edible delights in Floraison, but the angels did not require food. These delicacies existed to teach them self-discipline since these foods were delicious, producing energy and much pleasure. They were only allowed to partake of the food during celebrations and after strenuous workouts. It required God’s consent. The young angels spent their early days getting to know one another and learning about God’s laws, nature, animals, the cosmos, and themselves.  

Lilith and Michael delighted in their home, for Floraison was exquisite and full of joy, most of the time. 

“I accept rules because they establish guidelines for action and conduct,” Michael said with a solemn expression. “Rules create stability, discipline, and promote safety. Could you imagine what Beelzebub would be like had he no rules to follow?” Lilith glanced at Michael, the corners of her lips fighting a smile, her eyebrows slightly raised. Michael’s mouth twitched and soon they both burst into laughter. 

 “Beelzebub would be a complete mess without rules. I know that,” Lilith said. “But still, I am not fond of the many rules set by God for our kind. You are an upholder while I am a questioner.” 

Michael puckered his brow. “How could one question God?” 

Lilith ignored his question. “I cannot wait for the day I discover the divine talents He has promised. I hope my abilities are godlike.” Perceiving the power of God, evident in all things, awakened in her mind an aspiration that consumed her. She was fired by the desire for divine power. 

Michael looked at her sideways. “You have always told me that you longed to be close to God––to be first in his eyes. How do you expect to rise to Heaven Most High if you question God’s laws?” 

“God does not want us to follow his laws without question. That is why he gave us free will, so that we may follow our own path.” 

Michael gazed into her peculiar yet beautiful eyes, one blue iris and one brown iris. “Perhaps one day I shall come to understand you.” 

“Sooner rather than later––I hope.” She gazed up at him through her long, dark lashes, giggled and grabbed his hand. “Come, let us go to Sonnoris.” Lilith enjoyed the marvels in Floraison all the while imagining the day she would create wonders of her own.

Thank you so much for being our guest this week Vashti. Best wishes for your continued success with this series.

The pleasure is all mine, Allan. I am grateful to be here. Thank you for helping me spread the word about my new release, The Fall of Lilith.


Please visit these sites to discover more about Vashti and her books.

Photo credits:
Angel -
River - Howard Storm planetzion.wordpress
Thank you dear readers for visiting today. Please leave a comment and make me smile.
Watch here for information regarding my newest novel to be released this fall.