Saturday, April 8, 2017

2017 Brain to Books Hop!!

  2017 Brain To Books Convention GIVEAWAY of my latest science fiction novel, Curse of Koris, part of the Furlites of Aroriel series.

 Simply stop by and drop me a comment for a chance to win hardcover and paperback  signed copy or Kindle versions! 


  To enter, leave a comment (with your email) to be included in the Giveaway of  signed, hardcover and paperback editions of the book, as well as Kindle editions!

For fun we have an interview with the main character to introduce you to him and his world, instead of your humble author!

An Interview with  the main character of   

CURSE OF KORIS

 As I sit and wait for our guest, he walks in, striding on strong muscular legs, his tail stiff behind him, and his talons click on the smooth tile floor. He looks like a hairy flat-faced dinosaur, with large cat eyes the color of a glacier. He sits in the chair, slipping his tail through the gap in the back, and nods. I blink, trying not to stare at this alien man, who looks so very different from us, different than any alien I’ve ever seen in movies or television. His thick, long, predominantly-white coat gleams with meticulous grooming. I resist the urge to reach out and touch one of his muscular arms. I compose myself, and begin the interview.

Me:   Greetings, and welcome to our world!  I’d like for our readers to get to know you a bit.  Go ahead and introduce yourself, Kutius. May I call you that?

Kutius:   My name is Tius of Clan Zuliarus, though many still call me by my given name, Kutius. As you see, I look very different from humans. I am a Furlite,  a furry-coated, bipedal race of what you might call dinosaurian mammalians. We certainly do not stand and walk the same way you do, and we have tails. Nothing like your animal family exists on our planet.

Me:  We are descended from a species from a primate species that is now extinct. We had a group of creatures on this planet called dinosaurs, that went extinct some 60 million years ago. It’s fascinating primates never evolved on your world.

Kutius:  No, they did not. We have winged mammalians that take up that niche. Many species of matissias and gerials live in the trees. They resemble what your people’s mythical dragons look like, but with fur, and much smaller.
              
Me: I find that so wonderful. A place so different, yet giving rise to a dominant species. Tell the audience about your planet.

Kutius:  We live on Aroriel, a cold planet that is slightly larger than this one, with slightly less land mass, and more ocean area. We evolved our furry coats, as has most life on our world, to protect us from the harsh climate.

Me:    I imagine your society is similar to ours?  What do you do in life?  Tell us more about yourself.


Kutius:  I’m a successful business owner, running a big farm that supplies the world with fickle Swikin (type of domestic fowl) meat.  I was not always so successful, but worked hard with my spouse to grow our business. I like getting into every aspect of our business from the breeding, caring for, and processing of the swikins. I enjoy working the land, to sow the seeds of various plants to feed not only us but our award winning product. I work alongside every employee on the farm.

Me:  How many employees do you have?

Kutius:  Most are Clan members, and they range from my father, who records breading and also  plows and sows the land, to my cousins who work with the genetics of the swikins. My spouse keeps our books. My mother runs the kitchen. We occasionally hire local primary School age children, (Kutius pauses with raised furry brows, and I realize I am staring in surprise.) What?

Me:  Do you endorse Child labor?

Kutius:  No, not young children, though all must eventually learn they must earn what they have, and to contribute to their household. Primary school is equivalent to your High school. (Kutius laughs)

Me:  Contribute?

Kutius:  Yes. When they turn Primary school age of eighteen, uh, thirty of your years, they should either get a an after school job, or earn good enough grades that they earn credits into their new vaults. They begin saving for things like a shuttle to drive, or University schooling.

Me:  I think I understand. You’re a long-lived people indeed.  I’m jealous. Do children receive allowances from parents?

Kutius: No. They earn credits by getting good grades. Our Clan pays the schools and some of that is earned back by the children. For University studies, our Clan may pay for us or we pay for it ourselves, or a mix of both.

Me:   Interesting system.  Do you earn scholarships? Does Government help out at all?

Kutius:  (gazes at me quizzically) Scholarships? I’m not sure I understand the concept. Our Clans take care of the cost. Nobody else. Government does not pay for anyone’s schooling or anything else in life.

Me:  Oh I see. What then is your Government's role?

Kutius:   Our government is quite small, a council of our state Governors that propose laws, and discuss complaints from the populace that meets once a cinth. Proposed laws are put to the populace in referendum. Once the Council affairs are done, they return to their normal jobs. (Kutius scowls)  I  assume your Government is different, according to what little I read about your society?
                  
Me: Very different, and I rather like the concept of yours. (My turn to scowl) I don’t want to bore you with our convoluted system, so I’ll turn to a more pleasant topic. What is your home life like?

Kutius:   We live in multi-generational homes, sometimes with our Clan living in many homes on the same street. In our case, we all live in my home, which has twenty-five sleeping rooms with two stories. We have a large dining area and Common room, but we also have our own rooms with amenities in case we wish privacy. What my parents did by living alone with just me, when I was growing up is extremely rare. I see it is common for you humans.

Me:  Intriguing, and yes, it is. Many of us live completely alone. Do your people ever do that?

Kutius: It is extremely rare, but I did so for years, while going to University, and when I worked my first job.  It was fine, but I did miss the house full of loved ones, something I thought I’d never see again in life at that time.

Me: (feeling a tad uneasy as he stares at me with those cat-like, ice blue eyes) Apologies for making you uncomfortable.  Is it difficult raising these Swikin?


Kutius: I am fine. It is difficult, but I figured out how to  raise them successfully and guard that information with my life. (He grins and I notice his eight eyeteeth, one set larger than the other. They gleam in the lighting.) Our farm is located in a tropical zone, and it is warm all year, but, we do see occasional snow on the equator. The farm is surrounded by jungle forests. The swikins are protected but can endure a light snow and cold, as long as it is not much below the freezing mark. Go a distance away to the subtropic zones and snow will fall in winter. Further than that, we have snow at very least half of our year, which is 1.7 times as long as yours.

Me:  My kind of planet! I love snow. Tell us where and when on Aroriel were you born?

Kutius:   I was born on my grandmother’s prosperous farm, thirty nine of our years ago, half a world away from my present home, in the State of Auriga.  I believe, if I calculate correctly, I’d be sixty-six years old by your planet’s orbit. By our standards, I am still a very young man.  (Kutius utters a growling sigh) I loved that place, and I still do, with the cold blustery snowy winters that I miss. I learned a lot during my time there, which helps me in my current business.


Me:  Oh, impressive! Your  people are quite long-lived. Tell us about your Grandmother’s farm? Is it much like yours?

Kutius: It is, and yet is not.  For my first nine years (our years-fifteen by your world’s measure), I grew up on my grandmother’s farm, surrounded by loving clan and animals. I loved the open prairie lands where the farm was located. Then, family conflict, which I prefer not to speak of at this point, reared up, and my parents took off to live by themselves across the continent into the northern forest land, with me tagging along. The first couple of years were good, with my father’s clan around but, after another conflict, we ended up destitute. (Kutius scowls, ice-blue eyes narrowing) It all stemmed from the actions of a long dead ancestor of whom I’d rather not discuss right now. I studied hard, and eventually got myself out of that life.   

Me: All right, I won’t pry. How would you describe yourself?

Kutius:  Successful, stern, and I have a ruthless streak. My family helps balance me, and keep me from saying and doing things I might regret. Physically I am about average size for my people, three hundred of your pounds, and thanks to the work, lost my excess weight and built firm strong muscles in its place.

Me:  Are you dating anyone?

Kutius:   I am not certain I understand the question. (Kutius flicks his thick dinosaur-like furry tail, and frowns.)

Me:   Ah. let me rephrase. Romantically that is. Are you in a relationship?


Kutius:  Of course. I bonded to my wonderful spouse several years ago. (He smiles broadly, showing the impressive cutlery of a carnivore.)

Me:  Bonded? Were you married before?


Kutius:  Yes, bonded. If by married, you mean bonded, no. When we bond, it is generally for life. It is a physiological and emotional tie driven by our bonding pheromones. It is only broken by death, and it is not uncommon for the grieving spouse to die soon after.

Me:  You have no choice in who you bond to? 

Kutius:   No. (Kutius frowns, his facial fur bristling) But it is rare for our bondings to be wrong. Yes, weird things can happen like one person bonding and the other does not, but when we bond, we are united, mind, body and soul. The love is deeper than anything else in life. We cannot have intercourse with anyone else but our spouses, and have no desire to ever do so. We also cannot procreate until we do bond. Before bonding, well, anyone is fair game, and multiple partners is the norm unless you bond in childhood.

Me:  You have sex as children? (I can’t help but gape at him)

Kutius:  No. (Kutius laughs). The sexual pheromones develop at puberty, around fourteen of our years old, twenty-four by your planet’s biological clock. If you are bonded already, you only copulate with each other. If you are not, you seek out new partners until, eventually, you do bond.

Me:  Do you have a marriage ceremony?

Kutius:  If you mean a Bonding Ceremony, of course! Both Clans, as well as friends of the couple gather, and a simple ceremony is performed, where the couple chooses what Clan to join and what name their children will bear.  All is recorded with the town and state records.

Me: Very intriguing. Tell everyone what it is you do when you’re not farming.

Kutius:  Relaxing with my spouse, our Felakoon, and Clan, playing in our enormous swimming pool, or visiting Clan on another continent, and holding huge Clan gatherings on our estate, but we really enjoy our work, which is almost non-stop. (Kutius grins, baring the tips of his upper fangs, revealing all eight eye teeth again).

Me:  What is a Felakoon? (I want to know more about them!)

Kutius: (regards me with a smirk)Nonnative beings brought here by our people during the first interstellar voyage. A member of Clan Darius genetically altered the zygotes of an alien creature she called Felicakoon, but we have since learned it was a Maine Coon feline. It’s a long story, but we also bond to our Felakoons, without the mating urge. Its very much like the parent-child bond, but stronger. I know you know what a Maine Coon is.

Me:  Oh yes! (I laugh) I’ve had several in my lifetime and my present one is a blue smoke named Darwin. Did you bring your Felakoon  with you?

Kutius:   Of course. They accompany us since they are family. (Kutius turns his head, and calls, waving a hand adorned with sharp finger-talons.) Korion!  (I watch, slack-jawed as an incredibility large, easily over fifty pounds, black, long-furred feline, looking like a gigantic Maine Coon cat,  strolls out to join Kutius. His gold eyes regard me with great intelligence, far more than even the most intelligent cat (Phantom) I ever owned!)

Me: (I regain my composure and resume my interview, utterly fascinated by Korion).  He seems quite intelligent. How smart are they?

Kutius:   As intelligent as a young school age Furlitian child. They are also telepathic, and mindspeak their bondmates, and some can bespeak anyone. As I said, they are members of the family, not only by virtue of their bonding to us, but by law as well.

Me:  Fascinating.  I hope we will learn more about them soon. Since I love Maine Coons, I can’t wait to meet more Felakoons, and certainly wish I could have one of my own.

Kutius:  I don’t think they can bond to humankind. They are genetically now Aroriellian lifeforms, and linked to us. But, Korion wants me to tell you he likes you. (The giant Felakoon walks over to me, gold eyes bright, and I think I hear a purr that says “you may pet me!” I reach out and tentatively touch his head and he purrs like a freight train! I am enthralled and want one!)


Me: Tell him I think he is fantastic. (I glance at the clock and realize time runs low. Disappointment floods me.) I must wrap this up with this question. Tell us about your worst fear.


Kutius:   My early life was filled with so much strife, and conflict with family. I had few friends. When life turned and things worked out for me, I still worried that it would all fall apart. I still fear, after all the good that has happened, thanks to good fortune and hard work, that something or someone will snatch it all away from me, including my home, spouse and Korion. (Kutius looks down at the floor, and a shiver goes over his body as he digs his impressive toe talons into the floor.)

Me: I am sorry to dredge up such anxieties.  I hope you never lose what you worked so hard for. Very pleased to meet you, and I look forward to people learning more about you as they read your tale. (I take his hand in mine noting how large it is, with the thick black skin on his palm, and the short white fur on the back. He is careful not to nick me with his finger claws.)

Kutius   Thank you. I must meet Commander Geupetus and get my ride home. I never thought I’d be on good terms with the Ship Commander and his Clan. I once hated them all so much. Thank you for speaking with me, and I, too, hope all people will enjoy my tale.


Me:  As do I. Safe flight home.

Kutius:  We shall meet again I am sure. (He smiles and winks one eye, before trotting out of the room with his beautiful Felakoon. I watch, seething with more questions than answers, and know they wait between the pages of this book!)

 

After the Giveaway,

 Winners , if you enjoyed it,  share the love at the links below!

http://www.lulu.com/shop/marie-j-s-phillips/the-furlites-of-aroriel-curse-of-koris/hardcover/product-21735418.html 

http://askdavid.com/reviews/book/science-fiction/11462 

As always, if you're intrigued by my work, visit my author page at amazon.com/author/mariejsphillips

and my website for chapter samples and excerpts!        

 Furlitian Tales and Other Stories

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Brain To Books INDIE PRIDE DAY


Join the fun on July 1st, and have a chance to win free books and other swag!
My own Giveaway is a free copy of KHAN: A MAINE COON. . .print or Kindle version!
 

Monday, April 11, 2016

A Spring 2016 GIVEAWAY -Curse of Koris

A Spring 2016 GIVEAWAY of my latest science fiction novel, Curse of Koris, part of the Furlites of Aroriel series.

 Simply stop by and drop me a comment for a chance to win hardcover and paperback  signed copy or Kindle versions!  Giveaway closes June 1, 2016.


  To enter, leave a comment (with your email) to be included in the Giveaway of  signed, hardcover and paperback editions of the book, as well as Kindle editions!


 

For fun we have an interview with the main character to introduce you to him and his world, instead of your humble author!

An Interview with  the main character of   

CURSE OF KORIS

 As I sit and wait for our guest, he walks in, striding on strong muscular legs, his tail stiff behind him, and his talons click on the smooth tile floor. He looks like a hairy flat-faced dinosaur, with large cat eyes the color of a glacier. He sits in the chair, slipping his tail through the gap in the back, and nods. I blink, trying not to stare at this alien man, who looks so very different from us, different than any alien I’ve ever seen in movies or television. His thick, long, predominantly-white coat gleams with meticulous grooming. I resist the urge to reach out and touch one of his muscular arms. I compose myself, and begin the interview.

Me:   Greetings, and welcome to our world!  I’d like for our readers to get to know you a bit.  Go ahead and introduce yourself, Kutius. May I call you that?

Kutius:   My name is Tius of Clan Zuliarus, though many still call me by my given name, Kutius. As you see, I look very different from humans. I am a Furlite,  a furry-coated, bipedal race of what you might call dinosaurian mammalians. We certainly do not stand and walk the same way you do, and we have tails. Nothing like your animal family exists on our planet.

Me:  We are descended from a species from a primate species that is now extinct. We had a group of creatures on this planet called dinosaurs, that went extinct some 60 million years ago. It’s fascinating primates never evolved on your world.

Kutius:  No, they did not. We have winged mammalians that take up that niche. Many species of matissias and gerials live in the trees. They resemble what your people’s mythical dragons look like, but with fur, and much smaller.
              
Me: I find that so wonderful. A place so different, yet giving rise to a dominant species. Tell the audience about your planet.

Kutius:  We live on Aroriel, a cold planet that is slightly larger than this one, with slightly less land mass, and more ocean area. We evolved our furry coats, as has most life on our world, to protect us from the harsh climate.

Me:    I imagine your society is similar to ours?  What do you do in life?  Tell us more about yourself.


Kutius:  I’m a successful business owner, running a big farm that supplies the world with fickle Swikin (type of domestic fowl) meat.  I was not always so successful, but worked hard with my spouse to grow our business. I like getting into every aspect of our business from the breeding, caring for, and processing of the swikins. I enjoy working the land, to sow the seeds of various plants to feed not only us but our award winning product. I work alongside every employee on the farm.

Me:  How many employees do you have?

Kutius:  Most are Clan members, and they range from my father, who records breading and also  plows and sows the land, to my cousins who work with the genetics of the swikins. My spouse keeps our books. My mother runs the kitchen. We occasionally hire local primary School age children, (Kutius pauses with raised furry brows, and I realize I am staring in surprise.) What?

Me:  Do you endorse Child labor?

Kutius:  No, not young children, though all must eventually learn they must earn what they have, and to contribute to their household. Primary school is equivalent to your High school. (Kutius laughs)

Me:  Contribute?

Kutius:  Yes. When they turn Primary school age of eighteen, uh, thirty of your years, they should either get a an after school job, or earn good enough grades that they earn credits into their new vaults. They begin saving for things like a shuttle to drive, or University schooling.

Me:  I think I understand. You’re a long-lived people indeed.  I’m jealous. Do children receive allowances from parents?

Kutius: No. They earn credits by getting good grades. Our Clan pays the schools and some of that is earned back by the children. For University studies, our Clan may pay for us or we pay for it ourselves, or a mix of both.

Me:   Interesting system.  Do you earn scholarships? Does Government help out at all?

Kutius:  (gazes at me quizzically) Scholarships? I’m not sure I understand the concept. Our Clans take care of the cost. Nobody else. Government does not pay for anyone’s schooling or anything else in life.

Me:  Oh I see. What then is your Government's role?

Kutius:   Our government is quite small, a council of our state Governors that propose laws, and discuss complaints from the populace that meets once a cinth. Proposed laws are put to the populace in referendum. Once the Council affairs are done, they return to their normal jobs. (Kutius scowls)  I  assume your Government is different, according to what little I read about your society?
                  
Me: Very different, and I rather like the concept of yours. (My turn to scowl) I don’t want to bore you with our convoluted system, so I’ll turn to a more pleasant topic. What is your home life like?

Kutius:   We live in multi-generational homes, sometimes with our Clan living in many homes on the same street. In our case, we all live in my home, which has twenty-five sleeping rooms with two stories. We have a large dining area and Common room, but we also have our own rooms with amenities in case we wish privacy. What my parents did by living alone with just me, when I was growing up is extremely rare. I see it is common for you humans.

Me:  Intriguing, and yes, it is. Many of us live completely alone. Do your people ever do that?

Kutius: It is extremely rare, but I did so for years, while going to University, and when I worked my first job.  It was fine, but I did miss the house full of loved ones, something I thought I’d never see again in life at that time.

Me: (feeling a tad uneasy as he stares at me with those cat-like, ice blue eyes) Apologies for making you uncomfortable.  Is it difficult raising these Swikin?


Kutius: I am fine. It is difficult, but I figured out how to  raise them successfully and guard that information with my life. (He grins and I notice his eight eyeteeth, one set larger than the other. They gleam in the lighting.) Our farm is located in a tropical zone, and it is warm all year, but, we do see occasional snow on the equator. The farm is surrounded by jungle forests. The swikins are protected but can endure a light snow and cold, as long as it is not much below the freezing mark. Go a distance away to the subtropic zones and snow will fall in winter. Further than that, we have snow at very least half of our year, which is 1.7 times as long as yours.

Me:  My kind of planet! I love snow. Tell us where and when on Aroriel were you born?

Kutius:   I was born on my grandmother’s prosperous farm, thirty nine of our years ago, half a world away from my present home, in the State of Auriga.  I believe, if I calculate correctly, I’d be sixty-six years old by your planet’s orbit. By our standards, I am still a very young man.  (Kutius utters a growling sigh) I loved that place, and I still do, with the cold blustery snowy winters that I miss. I learned a lot during my time there, which helps me in my current business.


Me:  Oh, impressive! Your  people are quite long-lived. Tell us about your Grandmother’s farm? Is it much like yours?

Kutius: It is, and yet is not.  For my first nine years (our years-fifteen by your world’s measure), I grew up on my grandmother’s farm, surrounded by loving clan and animals. I loved the open prairie lands where the farm was located. Then, family conflict, which I prefer not to speak of at this point, reared up, and my parents took off to live by themselves across the continent into the northern forest land, with me tagging along. The first couple of years were good, with my father’s clan around but, after another conflict, we ended up destitute. (Kutius scowls, ice-blue eyes narrowing) It all stemmed from the actions of a long dead ancestor of whom I’d rather not discuss right now. I studied hard, and eventually got myself out of that life.   

Me: All right, I won’t pry. How would you describe yourself?

Kutius:  Successful, stern, and I have a ruthless streak. My family helps balance me, and keep me from saying and doing things I might regret. Physically I am about average size for my people, three hundred of your pounds, and thanks to the work, lost my excess weight and built firm strong muscles in its place.

Me:  Are you dating anyone?

Kutius:   I am not certain I understand the question. (Kutius flicks his thick dinosaur-like furry tail, and frowns.)

Me:   Ah. let me rephrase. Romantically that is. Are you in a relationship?


Kutius:  Of course. I bonded to my wonderful spouse several years ago. (He smiles broadly, showing the impressive cutlery of a carnivore.)

Me:  Bonded? Were you married before?


Kutius:  Yes, bonded. If by married, you mean bonded, no. When we bond, it is generally for life. It is a physiological and emotional tie driven by our bonding pheromones. It is only broken by death, and it is not uncommon for the grieving spouse to die soon after.

Me:  You have no choice in who you bond to? 

Kutius:   No. (Kutius frowns, his facial fur bristling) But it is rare for our bondings to be wrong. Yes, weird things can happen like one person bonding and the other does not, but when we bond, we are united, mind, body and soul. The love is deeper than anything else in life. We cannot have intercourse with anyone else but our spouses, and have no desire to ever do so. We also cannot procreate until we do bond. Before bonding, well, anyone is fair game, and multiple partners is the norm unless you bond in childhood.

Me:  You have sex as children? (I can’t help but gape at him)

Kutius:  No. (Kutius laughs). The sexual pheromones develop at puberty, around fourteen of our years old, twenty-four by your planet’s biological clock. If you are bonded already, you only copulate with each other. If you are not, you seek out new partners until, eventually, you do bond.

Me:  Do you have a marriage ceremony?

Kutius:  If you mean a Bonding Ceremony, of course! Both Clans, as well as friends of the couple gather, and a simple ceremony is performed, where the couple chooses what Clan to join and what name their children will bear.  All is recorded with the town and state records.

Me: Very intriguing. Tell everyone what it is you do when you’re not farming.

Kutius:  Relaxing with my spouse, our Felakoon, and Clan, playing in our enormous swimming pool, or visiting Clan on another continent, and holding huge Clan gatherings on our estate, but we really enjoy our work, which is almost non-stop. (Kutius grins, baring the tips of his upper fangs, revealing all eight eye teeth again).

Me:  What is a Felakoon? (I want to know more about them!)

Kutius: (regards me with a smirk)Nonnative beings brought here by our people during the first interstellar voyage. A member of Clan Darius genetically altered the zygotes of an alien creature she called Felicakoon, but we have since learned it was a Maine Coon feline. It’s a long story, but we also bond to our Felakoons, without the mating urge. Its very much like the parent-child bond, but stronger. I know you know what a Maine Coon is.

Me:  Oh yes! (I laugh) I’ve had several in my lifetime and my present one is a blue smoke named Darwin. Did you bring your Felakoon  with you?

Kutius:   Of course. They accompany us since they are family. (Kutius turns his head, and calls, waving a hand adorned with sharp finger-talons.) Korion!  (I watch, slack-jawed as an incredibility large, easily over fifty pounds, black, long-furred feline, looking like a gigantic Maine Coon cat,  strolls out to join Kutius. His gold eyes regard me with great intelligence, far more than even the most intelligent cat (Phantom) I ever owned!)

Me: (I regain my composure and resume my interview, utterly fascinated by Korion).  He seems quite intelligent. How smart are they?

Kutius:   As intelligent as a young school age Furlitian child. They are also telepathic, and mindspeak their bondmates, and some can bespeak anyone. As I said, they are members of the family, not only by virtue of their bonding to us, but by law as well.

Me:  Fascinating.  I hope we will learn more about them soon. Since I love Maine Coons, I can’t wait to meet more Felakoons, and certainly wish I could have one of my own.

Kutius:  I don’t think they can bond to humankind. They are genetically now Aroriellian lifeforms, and linked to us. But, Korion wants me to tell you he likes you. (The giant Felakoon walks over to me, gold eyes bright, and I think I hear a purr that says “you may pet me!” I reach out and tentatively touch his head and he purrs like a freight train! I am enthralled and want one!)


Me: Tell him I think he is fantastic. (I glance at the clock and realize time runs low. Disappointment floods me.) I must wrap this up with this question. Tell us about your worst fear.


Kutius:   My early life was filled with so much strife, and conflict with family. I had few friends. When life turned and things worked out for me, I still worried that it would all fall apart. I still fear, after all the good that has happened, thanks to good fortune and hard work, that something or someone will snatch it all away from me, including my home, spouse and Korion. (Kutius looks down at the floor, and a shiver goes over his body as he digs his impressive toe talons into the floor.)

Me: I am sorry to dredge up such anxieties.  I hope you never lose what you worked so hard for. Very pleased to meet you, and I look forward to people learning more about you as they read your tale. (I take his hand in mine noting how large it is, with the thick black skin on his palm, and the short white fur on the back. He is careful not to nick me with his finger claws.)

Kutius   Thank you. I must meet Commander Geupetus and get my ride home. I never thought I’d be on good terms with the Ship Commander and his Clan. I once hated them all so much. Thank you for speaking with me, and I, too, hope all people will enjoy my tale.


Me:  As do I. Safe flight home.

Kutius:  We shall meet again I am sure. (He smiles and winks one eye, before trotting out of the room with his beautiful Felakoon. I watch, seething with more questions than answers, and know they wait between the pages of this book!)

 

After the Giveaway,

 Winners , if you enjoyed it,  share the love at the links below!

http://www.lulu.com/shop/marie-j-s-phillips/the-furlites-of-aroriel-curse-of-koris/hardcover/product-21735418.html 

http://askdavid.com/reviews/book/science-fiction/11462 

As always, if you're intrigued by my work, visit my author page at amazon.com/author/mariejsphillips

and my website for chapter samples and excerpts!        

 Furlitian Tales and Other Stories

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

2014 SUMMER SPLASH BLOG HOP!

Greetings to all!

                                            2014 Indie Writers Unite Blog hop! 
Blog is Over!
Thanks so much for entering!!
The winner of OLD GENT signed hardcover is Sarah Smiles!
The next few folks won Kindle versions! Please send me the email you wish your Kindle copy to go to!
My email is RIAP57@aol.com
Nancy Wolfe
Bobbi Kinion
Jessica June
Ellie Lane
Sherry Malone
Lourie Staib
Suzanne (suzyrph)
Elisa Difino
Jeffrey Belanger 

 I will try and contact you via the emails you provided. If you do not hear please write me!

GRAND PRIZES #1 and #2: Kindle Paperwhite and a $50 Amazon Gift Card


http://summersplashhop.blogspot.com/

 http://summersplashhop.blogspot.com/

 Here on my Blog:
If you love TREES, this prize is for you! Win Kindle copy of the OLD GENT I will be giving away several copies.  Big Prize is a hard-cover full-color copy signed by me!

To enter my giveaway, just comment on this Blog and leave your contact email, and any other tidbit you'd like me to know. Below find a blurb about OLD GENT, the semi-fictional biography of the tree on the cover, from the tree's point of view!

http://www.amazon.com/OLD-GENT-Marie-J-Phillips-ebook/dp/B00EYLHGBW/
     Sprouting in an old abandoned field around 1895, Old Gent, a Norway Spruce, grew into a majestic towering specimen of his species, protective of the old home he saw built on his lands as a stout sapling. Human activity amused, startled, frightened and sometimes hurt him, thus he never found trust in the beaverlike species, until the fifth owner in nine decades moved into the old house he sheltered. The woman and her spouse proved reverent, changing his attitudes towards humans. The old tree experienced a new emotions, and gained the name of Old Gent. 
      When terror from the skies threatened the lands, he stood strong, determined to shield the home and owners he now loved, and paid a price. As decades weakened his ancient body with internal decay from injuries, he fought to regrow lost limbs, racing to once again tower into the skies. He spiraled a few seeds against the foundation of the old house, where his offspring sprouted. On his fateful felling day, one stood poised to continue his sire's legacy.

Check out summary and sample chapters at :

http://www.mariejsphillips.com/old-gent


Dates of the Summer Splash Blog Hop: June 13-16, 2014

Don't forget to leave comments and contact email! Good Luck!

NOTE-SPAMMERES will be ignored, deleted, and blocked.

Guest Post from Grammarly

Please welcome a guest post by Grammarly. http://www.grammarly.com/
I hope you will find it helpful!


Professional Blogging
by
Nikolas Baron

Writing a blog is relatively easy. Anyone with a keyboard, reliable access to the internet, and some spare time can start a blog, as evidenced by the tens of thousands of blogs originated online each week. Getting paid for one’s writing, however, may prove a bit more challenging. Anyone can blog, but not everyone makes a profit from their blogging efforts. Learning to write a coherent sentence and running prose through the plagiarism checker before posting a piece are only two aspects of running a successful for-profit, or “monetized” blog. Blogging is hard work, and turning a passion for writing about a particular topic into a paycheck takes dedication and patience.

The first step in creating a monetized blog is obvious, but often overlooked: Develop a talent for writing well. Study grammar and spelling. Learn to construct a sentence, and how to articulate thoughts in a coherent manner. Develop a personal “voice”. Professional writing, like any endeavor, requires a certain level of skill, which takes weeks, months, or even years to develop. One doesn’t simply decide one day to become a racecar driver. Practice is necessary, as well as some rites of passage into the sport. The aspiring driver accepts the need to enter a few minor races before he or she expects to run the oval in a NASCAR event. The aspiring blogger needs to gain experience and confidence by paying dues as a writer before stepping into the professional arena.

Writing for other blogs, also known as writing “guest posts”, is a good place to begin a blogging career. By creating content for other, established bloggers, the writer gains experience and confidence, and begins to develop a unique voice. The experience also provides opportunities to “try out” different niches, and to discover underlying passions, as well as offering opportunities for exposure to potential future followers. In the beginning, it’s best to write for smaller, lesser-known blogs. With practice comes more confidence and skill. Larger and better-known blogs may offer payment for guest posts, but the exposure is more important in the early stages than payment.

Starting a personal blog, centering on a particular interest or passion, is the next step. The topic should be close to the writer’s heart, so that motivation is strong to post new content regularly. The tighter the focus, the more successful the blog is likely to become. Niche topics may include personal finance, various aspects of parenting, gender-specific issues, religious or spiritual topics, or hobbies like raising chickens or building model cars. The list of possible topics is endless, and limited only by the author’s imagination and interests.

A blog can’t make a profit without readers. Social networking may be used to advertise a blog and attract readers. Buttons called “widgets” can be added to most blog platforms to allow readers to “follow” a blog and receive notifications of updates in their e-mail box. Widgets can also be used to add “sharing” buttons to the blog to maximize exposure through social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. The social media platforms used depend on the audience, tone, and focus of the blog. LinkedIn is the domain of upwardly-mobile professionals of all ages,  while  younger people tend to gravitate to Pinterest.
Facebook attracts people of all walks of life from the professional to the stay at home Mom. 
Networking within the blogging community is also important, and must be done professionally to be effective. A writer should never “spam” a blog with banal comments posted for the sole purpose of linking back to the commenter’s own blog. Comments on other blogs should contribute to the conversation, and backlinks should only be included if the link is to a relevant post. Care must be taken to project a professional, courteous online presence at all times.

Once a presence is established, the monetization process can begin. Monetization can be both direct and indirect. Indirect monetization includes advertising space sold on the blog platform itself, pay-per-click link and product placement, and affiliate advertising. Direct monetization might mean offering a subscription service or e-book sales. Direct monetization works best for narrowly focused blogs written by an established professional in a particular field. With so much content readily available for free on the ‘web, a subscription must provide the reader with something unique that isn’t available elsewhere.


By Nikolas Baron
------------------------------------------------------//-------------------------------------------------------------  https://plus.google.com/u/0/109993203182988419388/posts

 Bio:
Nikolas discovered his love for the written word in Elementary School, where he started spending his afternoons sprawled across the living room floor devouring one Marc Brown children's’ novel after the other and writing short stories about daring pirate adventures. After acquiring some experience in various marketing, business development, and hiring roles at internet startups in a few different countries, he decided to re-unite his professional life with his childhood passions by joining Grammarly’s marketing team in San Francisco. He has the pleasure of being tasked with talking to writers, bloggers, teachers, and others about how they use Grammarly’s online proofreading application to improve their writing. His free time is spent biking, traveling, and reading.