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Autumn Dystopian SFF Giveaway!

Book Giveaway Alert!! Win books by (us!), our author BFF, Jennifer Brody AND from Elizabeth Briggs, Brenda Drake, Pintip Dunn and Madeline Dyer. We've gotten together with some great authors for [...]

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The Stand by Stephen King

17Jun

the stand header photo

The Stand by Stephen King My rating: 5 of 5 stars I am, by nature, a chicken. I refuse to go on roller coasters, I will never see a horror movie, I’m scared of deep water and the dark, I wi [...]

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The Wilder Life by Wendy McClure

01Apr

Little House

The Wilder Life: My Adventures in the Lost World of Little House on the Prairie by Wendy McClure My rating: 3 of 5 stars This book is a must read for any Little House lover. From the very beginn [...]

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Editing Advice – A Guest Blog by Kristin Walters

18Mar

Kristin's Blog

I love writing, but editing comes in a close second. Very close. Writing is like mining for gemstones, but editing carves them into sparkling facets. So when my dear friends, Dana and Jessica, who make up the writing team Kirby Howell, asked me to edit their YA novels, Autumn in the City of Angels and Autumn in the Dark Meadows, I was happy to oblige.

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Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver

11Mar

Pandemonium

Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver My rating: 4 of 5 stars Set in a world where love has been outlawed, and everyone receives a lobotomy for their eighteenth birthday, Pandemonium continues exactly wh [...]

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Converting Word Files to Kindle, iPad and Nook Files

05Mar

Word to eBook

Okay, this will hopefully be a short and sweet tutorial on how to convert your Word files into files that your friends can read on their eReaders and Tablets. Once again, you can click on any of the images in this tutorial to make them larger.

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Writing Partnerships – How to find the right partner and what our process looks like

26Feb

KH Blog pic

The question Jessica and I get most frequently is “How do you two write together?” It’s a question I always dread, because the answer isn’t an easy one. It’s a process that we’ve developed over thirteen years (gasp!), and it’s one that’s become so ingrained that I often wonder how people write without a partner.

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Write Those Winter Blues Away

20Feb

Pacific Northwest

When the sun seems a million miles away and the Christmas Tree has gone back into hibernation in the hall closet, it’s easy to sink into The Winter Blues. It’s too cold to go outside, the flu is shrinking your social calendar, and after your last minute holiday shopping excursions, the mall is the last place you want to go.

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Modern Golden Age of TV – Dana’s Recommendations

11Feb

Golden Age of TV Header

Often times when I hear people say they “Don’t watch TV”, I have to ask... well, why?  And nearly 100% of the time, the answer I get is, “There’s just nothing good on television anymore.” [...]

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Tutorial on How to Create Email Newsletters with Mailchimp to Market your Books and other Products

04Feb

Mailchimp

So you want to create professional looking Newsletters to go out to friends, family and fans of your book (or whatever project you’re getting ready to unveil) because you’ve heard how effective email newsletters are at getting the word out and keeping everyone up to date. Problem is, there are tons of ways to make these newsletters, and most of them are not free and or don’t look as professional as you’d like. Well, problem solved. Let me introduce you to Mailchimp. It’s a free online tool that you can use to create and design and send email newsletters that offers wonderful tracking an analytics after your email blast has gone out, so you can see where the most successful parts of your newsletter were, and were the least successful areas were. Let’s get started, shall we?

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Marketing Your Book on Pinterest Tutorial

28Jan

Create new fans with Pinterest!

Jessica and I are big fans of Pinterest for authors trying to market their books, either traditionally published or self published. To my knowledge, it’s the fastest growing social network out there, and it’s predominantly female driven, which is great for us, because our novels target the female audience. We've had an author Pinterest page for about a year now, and actively look into ways to market our upcoming books there and create ways for our fans to be involved with us and find potential new readers for our novels. Here are some tips we’ve discovered for authors who want to use Pinterest the way we have to increase interest in their brand.

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Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

06Jan

gone-girl

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn My rating: 4 of 5 stars An infinitely readable book. Highly entertaining, and fast-paced. I have no doubt that Hollywood will soon turn this into a best picture nomine [...]

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The Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula K. Le Guin

19Aug

Earthsea

Classic fantasy. I'm ashamed to admit that it took me so many years to finally pick The Wizard of Earthsea up. Ursula K. Le Guin was the YA Tolkien of the 60's. Earthsea is a fully realized realm, where every isle has been painstaking thought out, down to the lay of the land to the languages and myths therein. I'd highly recommend for any preteen (or older reader) who loved The Hobbit, Lord of the Rings or the Harry Potter Series.

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On Writing by Stephen King

13Jul

Stephen King

My husband and I were out to dinner one night and at the next table was a girl about 12 years old, sitting with her family. What caught my attention was that her nose was buried in a young adult book. She was ignoring her entire family, her plate of food, the (amazing) bread basket and her glass of Coke. She was completely and utterly absorbed.

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Sometimes the Magic Works – Terry Brooks

19May

Sometimes the magic works

An amazing book for prospective writers. I picked this book up over a month ago with the best intentions, but didn't actually start reading it until late this afternoon.

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Life As We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer

02May

Life as we knew it

The idea of the moon being knocked closer to Earth by a passing asteroid fascinated me, so I had to pick up this book immediately. I was a little put off initially by the 'Dear Diary' approach to the telling of Miranda's story, though I got used to it after a few chapters.

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To the Nines – Stephanie Plum #9

28Apr

Stephanie Plum Series

Consistently amusing and entertaining. I love Stephanie Plum, no matter how bad her hair gets!

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Recommended Reading List

25Apr

Recommended-Reading_Page

Most of my close friends, and even some that aren’t so close, know me as a bit of a book worm.  Seldom does a day pass when I don’t spend quality time with my Kindle or an old-fashioned paperback [...]

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Nicole by Candice F. Ransom

06Apr

Nicole

My friend, Connie, recently pointed out to me that we are currently reliving the 90s this spring: sequels to the movies "American Pie" and "Men in Black", a new album by the recently reunited Smashing Pumpkins, neon accessories, floral leggings (I've even seen some with stirrups)...but most of all, the rerelease of Titanic in 3D.

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Cover Grazing

03Apr

Cover Grazing

We're getting close to having new cover art for the first book in the Autumn Series, Autumn in the City of Angels! The model in the picture is a good friend of ours and she’s proudly Beta #0. Ashley read the treatment of the first book before it became Autumn in the City of Angels – back when Autumn was in her late 20s and about to get married when the Crimson Fever struck! Ashley has cheered us on as a friend and a fan so we were very pleased that she agreed to play Autumn for the book cover.

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The Salmon of Doubt

01Apr

hitchhikers_douglasadams

I grew up reading and listening to nearly everything ever written by Douglas Adams. I put this posthumous collection of his last works off for years, thinking that if I did, there would always be one more piece of him out there for me to discover.

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Daly Love

It’s not secret to most of you guys reading this blog that Kirby and I have strong roots in the Southern part of the US, being that I was born there, and later met Kirby at the University of Alabama [...]

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Bad Girls Don’t Die

Bad Girls Don't Die by Katie Alender My rating: 5 of 5 stars This was a fantastic read! The main character, Alexis, is a unique and fresh take on strong, female leads. She's definitely not your av [...]

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Ready Player One

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline My rating: 5 of 5 stars Utterly absorbing! I haven't been this invested in a book in a while! I was engaged from page one and VERY sad when it was over. I listen [...]

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Murder on a Girl’s Night Out (Southern Sisters Mysteries, #1)

Murder on a Girls' Night Out by Anne George My rating: 4 of 5 stars Set in Birmingham, AL, my home town. It warmed my heart reading about these two ladies that reminded me of my Mother and her sist [...]

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Dragonfly in Amber

Dragonfly in Amber by Diana Gabaldon My rating: 3 of 5 stars Diana Gabaldon is always engaging, and her prose is incredibly florid and descriptive, but I found the plot of this second Outlander book [...]

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Ramona Quimby, Age 8

Ramona Quimby, Age 8 by Beverly Cleary My rating: 5 of 5 stars I have fond memories of reading this book back in second grade, and laughing aloud at the lunch table when I read how Ramona busted [...]

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You Write Like…

So, it’s late, and I have a rapidly approaching deadline, think somewhere in the neighborhood of a few hours.  I’m a third of the way through, wishing I could magically be done, and what am I doi [...]

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What’s in a Name?

Like most writers who are also home working hard on their novels, I’m doing what they are… “researching.” And by researching, I mean checking Facebook and blogging for our adoring fans (You do [...]

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Oscars & Meatballs

The Red Carpet coverage is muted on the TV to help me try to ignore the arriving stars so I can focus on writing.  I should just turn it off, but that’s not going to happen.  The ingredients for h [...]

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You really LIKE us!!!

Admin's Note: This blog post was originally written on 02/06/11 and due to website malfunctions (Jessica's malfunctions) and back injuries (Dana's back), this is getting posted now.  So fuel up your [...]

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The Beginning

When I was a little girl, we lived in Virginia in a planned community with hundreds of miles of bike trails around a man-made lake.  These bike trails curved through woods and over humped wooden brid [...]

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Welcome to the Kirby Howell Author Blog! Neither of us have ever written in a blog before, so I hope you'll bear with us while we figure it out.  And before you ask why we're referring to ourselve [...]

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