Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Year in Review 2014

Goodbye, 2014! 2014 was a peaceful year for me and it also seemed to be a year of hard work and preparation. Today I contemplate the past ten years of my young adulthood: getting into my career as an artist, meeting my fiance, buying a house, and becoming an author. There's still work ahead as I dream new dreams. I'm looking forward to what's next.

Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there, wondering, fearing, doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before.― Edgar Allan Poe





My "Best of" picks:
Best Movie: Interstellar
Best TV Show: True Detective
Best Music: Far From Any Road by The Handsome Family
Best Podcast: Serial

I hope everyone had a great year! Have a happy NYE!


Monday, December 29, 2014

HENGE - Cocktails

Want drink ideas to celebrate New Year's Eve with? Why not try drinks inspired by the Le Fay Series? I created these drinks for the Henge release party. The owner of the bar that hosted liked the recipes a lot and I'm glad the drinks turned out great! Hurray.

Drink photos by Maxine Toh Photography

(Mint Magic tea combined with gin and garnished with a star)

2 shots Mint Magic tea by Celestial
1 shot gin
1/2 shot honey mead
1 splash simple syrup
squeeze of lemon juice
(shake ingredients)
top with sparkling wine
garnish: 1 slice of starfruit

(crimson blaze atop sparkling wine)

fill glass with chilled sparkling wine
add small drizzle of cherry syrup
add small drizzle of creme de violette
squeeze of lemon juice
garnish: 1 rose petal

(bourbon and mead enchanted by a magical stone)

1 shot bourbon
2 shot honey mead
1 pour of simple syrup
squeeze of lemon juice
(shake ingredients)
top with sparkling wine
garnish: 1 chilled whiskey stone

The drinks together:

Here's the tea I recommend for the Merlin cocktail:

I hope you enjoy the drinks!


Tuesday, December 23, 2014

HENGE - Blog Tour Recap pt. 6!

Hello everyone! I started the second draft of the next book after Henge! Also I finished the book trailer and hope to reveal it in January. This week royalties are going to charity. I hope you'll have a happy holiday!

Review highlight:

"I really loved this book. I really just didn’t want to stop reading. I loved this world of Camelot, the magic and the mystery. This book is definitely going on my favorite list and I completely understand the comparison to Hogwarts and Panem. "--Maureen's Books

Majanka interviews me on writing and Henge
Howling Turtle interviews Merlin!

Posts by me:Artwork of Merlin!
Henge-inspired Holiday cooking ideas
Henge-inspired gift ideas
Also my winter vacation goals

The holiday week will be a little slow but posts will return in full force next week! Coming up next through Enchanted:

Holiday week:

December 23rd: Book Excerpt @ The Single Librarian
December 25th: Book Review @ I Heart Reading
December 27th: Promo Post @ 365 Days of Reading

New Year week:

December 29th: Book Excerpt @ Sunshine Book Promotions
December 31st: Promo Post @ The Book Gazette
January 1st: Author Interview @ The Single Librarian
January 3rd: Book Excerpt @ Bookish Madness
January 6th: Author Interview @ Plain Talk BM

Happy Holiday!


Monday, December 22, 2014

Holiday Charity 2014

It's that time of the year again! For all of Christmas week 12/22-12/26, all royalties will go toward charity.

Royalties from CLAN will go to Cancer Research Institute-- a nonprofit organization developing cancer immunotherapy to conquer cancer.

Royalties form HENGE will go to The Adolescent Depression Awareness Program which help teens become aware of depression and other mental health issues.

I hope you'll consider buying a book for charity and I hope you have a happy holiday! 


Sunday, December 21, 2014

HENGE - Gift Ideas

Henge and Arthurian-inspired last minute gift ideas. Perfect for packaging with the paperback!

Lavender and Thyme candle form Paddywax (smells like the English countryside) 

"The fragrance of this set can best be described as very rich with some lovely spices from the east, with under currents of sweet expensive red wine, and topped off with a rich floral English rose. This is an absolutely delicious fragrance pulled right from the pages of the literature on the legendary Camelot, King Arthur's capital. "--Cafe Primrose

Sometimes I light this incense before I start my work on Henge. Smells great!

Happy shopping!


HENGE - Holiday Recipes

Anyone cooking for the holiday week? Today I am sharing some recipes I used for the Henge (my YA fantasy novel) release party that I think will be perfect for the holidays. Do you remember the scones Morgan's father made? Did you know Tintagel, where Morgan is from, is known for delicious pasties and scones? Try making some recipes from Morgan's town! 

Currant Marmalade Scones
Use a scone mix (I used Garvey's Organic Traditional Scone Mix)
Add 1/2 cup soaked currants
1 tablespoon of marmalade

Blackberry Lavender Scones
Use a scone mix (I used Garvey's Organic Traditional Scone Mix)
Add 1/2 cup chopped blackberries
1 tablespoon lavender sugar (I used lavender sugar from Cafe Primrose)

Mead Cake (I used this recipe--substitute winter fruits like pear to make it more of a winter solstice cake)

Cornish Pasties (I used this recipe)
Pasties are great for the winter because it uses winter vegetables! And super easy to eat--a great way to feed lots of people on holiday.

Pics of scones and pasties we had in Tintagel:

I know I'll be making more scones for Christmas. 

Also if you are doing some last minute Christmas shopping, I posted some Henge-inspired gift ideas on my Tumblr! 

Happy cooking!


Saturday, December 20, 2014

Holiday Vacation Goals

Woohoo! It's winter vacation! (Don't forget the holiday sale for Henge ends tomorrow at midnight! Get your copy.) I plan on drinking eggnog, sitting by the fire, catching up on reading and watching shows, and chilling. But most importantly, a break is the biggest opportunity I have to catch up on my author work!

Priority number one:

Finishing the 2nd draft of the next book--yes, the 2nd book in the Le Fay Series after Henge! (I completed the first draft in 2011.) I'm so so excited for this one. As a writer, I consider this one to be my best work. I'm going all out on this one. It will be out next year!   

Other priorities:

Making the book trailer for Henge.

Selling other rights for Clan and Henge: TV, movie, graphic novels. I plan on getting as far as possible on the scripts and graphic novel proposals. Whether you'll ever see these or not will depend on if the scripts or proposals sell. The important thing for me is that I have these things circulating so that there is a chance.

Completing a brand new graphic novel proposal. This will be sent to my agent.

Other things I will naturally get done (I draw every morning):

Artwork for Le Fay 2.

It's an ambitious schedule. I'm setting up 2015 so that there are various things circulating. Other than these projects, of course I will continue working on Henge promotions and hope you'll enjoy the posts I have planned.

Wish me luck this vacation!


Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Le Fay Series - Meet Merlin!

As a part of the character portrait series today I am revealing Merlin! Merlin is the second most important character in the Le Fay Series and my second favorite character too. You'll see what role he plays exactly if you read Henge. Is he a friend? Enemy? Romantic interest? 

Meet the magic genius extraordinaire... 


I'm pleased with how this came out because it's one of those paintings that gave me a lot of insight into how he appeared. He has a very kind and calm yet guarded look--the kind of face you can't quite read. This painting really helped me understand him more as character. 

Morgan's description of Merlin when she meets him for the first time:

"As I walk backstage the young man who was staring at me beams with perfect teeth. Suddenly the temperature in my face rises, and it doesn’t help that I just got done working with fire. I wipe the sweat from my face with the back of my hand and study him. The bright light above shines through his long lashes and illuminates his ash-blond hair and blue eyes, which are the shade of a partially cloudy sky. A somber and wise blue. A smattering of faint freckles dots his nose, like raindrops. He even smells like rain."--Morgan le Fay, Henge (Le Fay Series)

Morgan and Guinevere judging talking about Merlin:

She [Guinevere] smiles at me impishly. “Are you checking him out?”
“Him? You mean…”
I look back at Merlin, then at her. “No way!”
“He’s cute, isn’t he?”
“I guess he is, but he’s…”
Guinevere cranes closer. “What?”
“You can tell me,” she says.
“My father told me never to judge someone I don’t know.”
“Judging and gossiping are part of proper conversation.”
I lift a brow. “He’s too, uh… too pompous,” I say. “Pretentious.”
“I guess so,” Guinevere says. “Nobody is genuinely that perfect.”
“Exactly,” I exclaim. 

I hope you enjoyed meeting Merlin!

And don't forget... Henge is 99 cents until Monday! Go really meet Merlin in the book and enjoy!


Tuesday, December 16, 2014

HENGE - Blog Tour Recap Pt. 5

First of all... Henge ebook is on sale for 99 cents until 12/22! Get your copy while you can!

I sent out the grand prize (signed paperback, signed postcards, signed mini poster, Arthur's Round pin) complete with purple bubble wrap! So excited:

Want to win this package? Enter any of the Enchanted giveaways!

Review highlights:

"Magic, what can I say! I grew up hearing about the Camelot stories and King Arthur, and I always enjoyed them. Realm Lovejoy has taken the stories we all know and love and made them even better! With the setting being modern day, various other elements. Throught the story I just could not put it down! I’m a sucker when it comes to anything magic, having read and loved the Harry Potter series. Lovejoy’s novel is sure to please!"--Charles Reads

"Morgan is one of my favorite characters I've ever read about."--Books are Forever

Cassidy Crimson interview me on writing and Henge

In case you missed it, I posted a portrait of Morgan le Fay!
And illustration samples from the paperback!

Coming up next... a portrait of Merlin! Stay tuned tomorrow!

This is the blog tour schedule for this week:

December 15th: Promo Post @ Bookaholic Ramblings
December 17th: Author Interview @ Majanka’s Blog
December 18th: Book Excerpt @ Realm Tramper
December 19th: Promo Post @ I’m an Eclectic Reader
December 21st: Character Interview @ Howling Turtle


Monday, December 15, 2014

HENGE - Holiday Sale!

Hello everyone! It's almost holiday break and I can't wait! Henge (Le Fay Series) is on sale for the only time this season... starting today!

From 12/15-12/22 the ebook is only 99 cents! 

It's a HUGE discount and hope you'll take advantage of it. You could read Henge over your holiday break, travels, or buy the ebook as a gift. Check out the book and read the reviews to see if you want to check it out. Kirkus says Henge is "Camelot meets Hogwarts meets Panem..."

I hope you enjoy Henge! Happy almost Holidays! 



Thursday, December 11, 2014

Le Fay Series - Meet Morgan le Fay!

Today I am launching the character portrait series from novel HENGE (Le Fay Series)! Every week I will reveal a character that I illustrated. Today I am introducing you to the main character of the Le Fay Series. 

Meet the heroine... 

The fierce MORGAN LE FAY!

I'm particularly happy about this painting because it shows how I view her and why I was attracted to feature her as the heroine. There's something different and intense about her. I love that she's powerful and complicated but also that she's vulnerable, admits openly to her own thoughts, however dark, yet has the bravery to push through challenges. She was interesting enough for me to create a series so I feel blessed to have her as my Arthurian muse. 

Here are some of my favorite quotes from Morgan:

"I have no distractions from my goal. My will is pure, driven by madness. 'Nothing is more powerful than madness,' my mother used to say."--Morgan le Fay, Henge (Le Fay Series)

"...But why try to justify my anger to myself? Hate is an emotion that needs no logic or reason. Hate exists, meaningless and indignant. I know this and still hate him."--Morgan le Fay (on Mordred), Henge (Le Fay Series)

"Grandfather insisted that my name be Morgan when I was born—he hoped I’d be a water user. He said that Morgan means, 'circling sea,' which reminded me of waves that go round and round—only widening, getting fiercer, never receding, and turning into a black hole."--Morgan le Fay, Henge (Le Fay Series)

"I have emotions that are terrible and coiled like snakes tangled into each other. I cannot count or identify them. I never know when one will poison me. And where did they come from in the first place?"--Morgan le Fay, Henge (Le Fay Series)

I hope you enjoyed meeting Morgan! Stay tuned for the next one...



Tuesday, December 9, 2014

HENGE - Art Samples

Hello everyone! Now that the paperback is out, I am sharing some art samples that I illustrated from the book. It's a different art style from CLAN. CLAN had a lot of cold and almost abstract images suitable to the story while HENGE features some more organic scenery and recognizable emotions. I had fun working on both styles. I hope you enjoy the art!


 Morgan staring into the flame of Lancelot's lighter:

 Morgan's ultra power:

Merlin takes Morgan to the cave:

Morgan's hometown, Tintagel:

The talented and mysterious Vivian:

Morgan and Guinevere take a walk around the Camelot grounds:

Morgan visits the Henge:

Do you like them? Hope you grab a copy of the book!



Monday, December 8, 2014

HENGE - Blog Tour Recap Pt.4

It's been 3 weeks since the book release... Henge ebook hit #3 Arthurian Bestseller AND the paperback hit #5 AND was listed as #1 Hot New Release on Amazon over the weekend! Thanks everyone! I had the HENGE release party yesterday! I'll post pics soon.

In the meantime, here's a couple pics from the night HENGE released (not the party). Joey and I went to Canterbury Ales to have a drink and dinner--isn't the setting so suitable? Too bad they were out of the drink called Knight in Rusty Armor:

Now onto the recap of the blog tour!

Review highlight from Natural Bri:

“All these brilliant differences in character make you yearn for the next book in the series, a way to see into the life of each, a way to discover what befalls them, in order to change them so.”—Natural Bri

Excerpt: Book Guru shares a scene in HENGE where Morgan le Fay is in danger

Interview: Eclipse Reviews interviews Morgan le Fay

Here are snippets from the interviewing of Morgan le Fay:

Describe yourself what is your worst and best quality? 
My best quality is that I work hard, am focused, and am not afraid to fight for what I believe in. The worst? Well... I've been told I have a bad temper and can be stubborn at times.

What is the quality you most like in a man?
Kindness and honesty!

What is your motto?
Tears weaken fire.

Speaking of Morgan le Fay, I am publishing her portrait on Thursday!

I also posted photos of the paperback! Hope you grab your copy.

And? I shared a poster I created for HENGE. You can win the poster by winning the signed paperback + swag through Enchanted

Coming up this week... Art samples of HENGE and a portrait of Morgan le Fay. Also, here's the schedule for this week's Enchanted blog tour:

December 8th: Author Interview @ Cassidy Crimson’s Blog
December 9th: Promo Post @ Miss Little Book Addict YA House of Books
December 11th: Book Excerpt @ Hollow Readers
December 13th: Book Review @ Books are Forever

P.S. Here's a shot of hot new release... HENGE is there twice, hah!


Thursday, December 4, 2014

HENGE - Hear Your Calling

For the Le Fay Series, I am making a poster for each book that will hopefully have an inspirational and heroic vibe suitable for Morgan le Fay and her journey.

Here's the one for HENGE:

Thus a hero's journey begins. May you find your calling.



P.S. You can win this signed print in any of the giveaway featured on the blog tours that includes the prize "signed paperback + swag."

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

HENGE - Paperback

I'm so excited that the HENGE paperback is out! There's nothing like holding the physical book in your hands. It came out better than I expected. The paperback contains several illustrations by me and you can go to the Amazon page to flip through it. I worked hard through 2014 to put in all the design touches I wanted in this book.  

Allow me to tour you through parts of the paperback!

What do you think? I hope you grab a copy and check it out yourself!