Looking Back on 2015 from 2016

Looking Back on 2015 from 2016

As I look back on 2015 and look down the sparkling maw that is 2016, I’m filled with much excitement for this year. Let’s look back on 2015 to see some of what I’ve accomplished:

  1. Landing a contract for When Stars Die with Gnome on Pig Productions.
  2. Passing my exam to be certified as a personal trainer.
  3. Earning my specialty certification in functional fitness.
  4. Starting the advanced level in ballet.
  5. Finally nailing those blasted foutte turns.
  6. Writing, completing, and publishing A Treacherous Flame. (Seriously, this is huge for me because I hadn’t written anything in a while.)
  7. Recovering from my eating disorder in April.
  8. Being free from depression for an entire year. (I’ll write a post later this week on what this feels like for me.)

Now here is what I hope to accomplish in 2016:

  1. Earning my group fitness certification.
  2. Finding a job as both a personal trainer and group fitness instructor.
  3. Getting The Stars Are Infinite published.
  4. Increasing sales for When Stars Die.
  5. Graduating with my BA.
  6. Moving in with my fiance and getting married.
  7. Studying for a specialty certification in nutrition.
  8. Having a full list of clients within three months, preferably before I earn my BA.
  9. Getting back en pointe since my shoes are dead and I screwed up my foot when I fell on it in pointe class.
  10. Building more muscle through ballet and crosstraining.
  11. Helping clients succeed with their fitness goals.
  12. Writing a novella (or novel, whatever it turns out to be) for Forevermore Publishing.
  13. Writing the third book in The Stars Trilogy.

These are all of my goals for the year of 2016. It’s a lengthy list, but I know I can succeed.

So what do you plan to accomplish in 2016?



Purchase When Stars Die at Amazon, Lulu, Kobo, and Barnes&Noble.

Manic Monday: When Stars Die Release and Other Things

Manic Monday: When Stars Die Release and Other Things


When Stars Die released on Saturday, and I literally did not have any time to announce this between work and catching up on schoolwork. For now it is only on Lulu.com, but guess what? You can get the paperback for $7.41! You can also get it in e-book format and hardback.

I will update you when it is on Amazon, as I know some of you will probably wait until then. But for now, I encourage you to get the paperback off Lulu because I don’t know if Amazon is going to offer the same discount that Lulu currently is.

In any case, here’s what it’s about:

The City of Malva is rife with puritanical hatred for witches. It is said they embody the Seven Deadly sins of mankind. Amelia’s only chance of saving her brother Nathaniel, a born witch, is to become a professed nun at Cathedral Reims. Enduring a series of trials including starvation, isolation, physical abuse and blood-sucking leeches, she will sacrifice all that she is to save him. Complicating all of this is the fact that Amelia can see what is lurking in the shadows. Shadowmen, seeking witches like Nathaniel to join their ranks. This group of Shadowmen begin planning. The results could be devastating. Oliver Cromwell, a dashing priest at Cathedral Reims, is the only one who can protect Amelia, her brother and save Malva. Yet, he may prove to be more dangerous than the shadows themselves.


In other news, I passed my ACE exam with flying colors! So now I am a certified personal trainer. I’m going to wait until after Christmas to seek out a job in this field since I will be flying to Texas with my fiance next month. In the meantime, I plan to get a specialty certification in functional training, which is just a fancy way of saying I’ll be extra qualified to conduct postural assessments, correct form, and improve flexibility.

I don’t think I’ll be able to blog while I’m in Texas, but I’ll certainly blog when I get home!

In the meantime, I’m going to be beefing up my fitness platform.


A Treacherous Flame

Free for Kindle Unlimited Users, 0.99 for all others






Late Manic Monday: Life Goals and A Treacherous Flame

Late Manic Monday: Life Goals and A Treacherous Flame

a treacherous flameA Treacherous Flame is now free on Amazon for five days! It is a precursor to When Stars Die. Once you get the story, you can also freely lend it to whomever you wish. I will eventually make it perma free. I just have to format it for Smashwords and have Amazon do a price match.

Here’s what it’s about:

Benjamin Fairchild, interrogator at Usiburn Tower, is in charge of extracting confessions from witches–and then killing them. His methods are brutal. From crushing thumbs to cutting out tongues, Benjamin is not afraid to use the most extreme methods to get what he wants.

On a crusade to eliminate every last witch he can, Benjamin is currently tasked with a young girl named Emily. She proves to be a most difficult case. Trying to convince Benjamin of her innocence is impossible when he is certain that witches are the biggest embodiment of sin. However, Emily will force Benjamin to discover a secret about himself that threatens to undo everything he has been taught.


So besides this, what else is going on in this hectic life of mine?

Well, I finally got certified in CPR/AED/First Aid, which means I’ve scheduled my personal trainer exam for next Friday at 1 PM. YIKES! Here I am wondering what more I need to study besides the math, which is easy, but I just need to memorize the formulas. I’m both nervous and excited because I’m finally certain of what I want to do as a career, and even though I hear it’s really tough, I hope to find both happiness and contentment in this career. To be honest, I’d love to be as big as Kayla Itsines. But that’s a long-term goal. Right now, I’m just going to focus on short-term goals: passing the exam, getting a specialty certification, getting my BA in English, then finding a job as a trainer.

I’m also developing my fitness platform, primarily through blogging and Instagram. I started a Twitter account, but I feel like I need to be more popular to really have Twitter work for me. It’s easier to get followers on Instagram because pretty pics really attract people, so I’ll depend on my blog and Instagram for now. It’s kind of crazy trying to juggle both a fitness and author platform, which is why a Manic Monday post is late in the first place.

What about my goals as an author?

Well, with the re-release of When Stars Die being next Saturday, I plan to submit my second book some time in December after I go over it once more. And I can’t say I’ll be able to start the third book soon. Maybe I can, but there’s no promise. Right now I have to focus on getting certified and then getting my BA, which will hopefully be next March if I can get into two classes instead of one like I’ve been forced to do lately.

Like striving to be like Kayla Itsines, my long-term goals are to eventually be a bestseller, or even just make enough that it’d be a GREAT supplementary income. Even if I made loads of money from writing, I wouldn’t let go of my job as a trainer.

From here on out, it’s all about HARD work.

Manic Monday: Cover Reveal for The Treacherous Flame

Manic Monday: Cover Reveal for The Treacherous Flame

a treacherous flameHere is the cover to my short story, “A Treacherous Flame”! I plan to have it released on November 10th, and it will be free on Amazon.

Benjamin Fairchild, interrogator at Usiburn Tower, is in charge of extracting confessions from witches–and then killing them. His methods are brutal. From crushing thumbs to cutting out tongues, Benjamin is not afraid to use the most extreme methods to get what he wants.

On a crusade to eliminate every last witch he can, Benjamin is currently tasked with a young girl named Emily. She proves to be a most difficult case. Trying to convince Benjamin of her innocence is impossible when he is certain that witches are the biggest embodiment of sin. However, Emily will force Benjamin to discover a secret about himself that threatens to undo everything he has been taught.

If you need a reminder, I’ve included a button to my newsletter below. Click on it, subscribe, and you’ll receive it on the day of release.


Why I Adore Anime

Why I Adore Anime

BeFunky Collage

As far as visual entertainment is concerned, I prefer anime far more than any other genre of television show or even movie. While anime is based off manga (which I do read, by the way!), I feel as though anime contains the most original storylines I’ve ever come across. (Studio Ghibli, anyone?) The art styles can be absolutely incredible, the characters breathtaking, the plots unbelievably fantastic, the music drop-dead gorgeous (Tokyo Ghoul’s Unravel!), and there are so many different genres within anime that can appeal to anyone’s tastes.

My favorite anime is currently Puella Magi Madoka Magica, an incredible story that turns the magical girl genre on its head. In fact, this anime is the reason why I was able to discover exactly how I want to end The Stars Trilogy. Anime has inspired a lot of storylines that are currently floating around in my head.

So what exactly is it that makes me prefer anime over other types of visual media? I think it’s this idea that anime is more often than not based off manga. Manga is very visual in itself, so you already have this template available for the anime based off it. The anime can also choose to go off in a different direction or can even incorporate filler episodes, which can add more colors to characters, if the manga is still ongoing. My two favorite ongoing manga are Black Butler and Tokyo Ghoul. I also love how limitless anime is. If an anime contains a myriad of special affects, like if it’s in the fantasy genre, producers don’t have to worry about replicating those effects with a green screen. They can draw them in and go from there. I also love how fluid the artists are with the styles of the characters based off the general tone from the manga. The colors are so vivid and each art style unique and distinct. For example, the art style of Puella Magi Modoka Magica is very cute and innocent, deceptively so, but the story is intense and dark. So you have this cuteness that makes you believe you’re going to be watching a typical magical girl show, but then by episode three, you realize it’s completely atypical. Prepare to have your heart ripped out and eaten.

What I also love about anime is that nothing is off-limits when it comes to character identities. You have transgender characters, characters who are homosexual, characters who cross-dress, gender non-conforming characters–and no one makes a huge deal out of it! In fact, when Sailor Moon was showing on cable in America, they censored a lesbian relationship between two of the scouts and made them cousins. Yet, if you watch the uncensored version, the creators treat their relationship like any other. It seems like mangaka and anime artists want to normalize these identities so that people begin to realize there is nothing wrong with identifying as these things.

Anime also forces you to suspend your disbelief since a lot of it can never happen in real life, like Naruto. Your imagination works in overdrive because of this. And even though the plots of the anime can be unrealistic (I mean, really, let’s hope we never have to deal with titans), it explores meaningful concepts all the time. These concepts often explore what it means to be human. In Puella Magi Madoka Magica, a major theme is sacrifice and what you would be willing to give up for what you believe to be the greater good. It also explores how every choice we make affects the future, whether it’s for better or for worse. Friendship is also at the core of much of anime. Anime can show you how valuable friendship is and how you should never take for granted great friends.

In this way, anime is very much like novels since the possibilities of what can be explored are limitless. The best anime has deep, compelling characters and plots, so I would recommend to any writer to give anime a chance. It’s chocked full of inspiration that I wouldn’t otherwise have if it were not for anime. I’d also suggest giving manga a chance as well since the anime can sometimes veer off into a wildly different direction or not even cover everything. Plus, it’s like needing to read the book before watching the movie.

The Journey of Finding a New Home: Part One

The Journey of Finding a New Home: Part One

when-starsAs you all know, When Stars Die is now an orphaned book due to the unfortunate closure of AEC Stellar Publishing. It wasn’t as heartbroken as I imagined it would be. It still sucks, but I’m trying to see the bright in the bad now. All this means for me is that my novel will receive a fresh start at another home that will hopefully treat it just as well as AEC did. When Stars Die will start over and hopefully find a wider audience. Who is to say? I can’t assume anything right now.

When Stars Die has already received one rejection from Month9Books, but only because Month9 doesn’t accept previously published books from publishers that haven’t been in the game long enough. However, its publisher did love my query letter, so that is a step in the right direction. I’m waiting to hear on these remaining houses: Curiosity Quills Press, Pants on Fire Press, and Bookfish Books. The third one is relatively new, but they’re already pretty attractive in my eyes. Writers AMuse Me Publishing is also on my list, but I’ll submit to it once I hear back from the other three houses. Apparently there isn’t a long waiting period, however, to hear back from them. From what I’ve been told, it can take up to two weeks. With Month9, it was about three days.

It’s unfortunately not uncommon for newer presses to fold within the first few years of their lives. AEC didn’t fold due to any financial reasons. That much I can at least say, as most do fold for that reason.

I think a lot of people would have probably gone ahead and self-published, but since only one book was published in the trilogy so far, I see it fit to find a new home for it. Curiosity Quills most definitely takes previously published works from other houses. I’m not sure about the latter two, as they didn’t specify in their guidelines, but I gave them a chance anyway. With Writers AMuse Me, I’ve already got an “in,” so to speak, but as a courtesy, I do want to wait and hear back from the other publishers and see what they offer, and then I’ll submit to Writers.

So now it’s a waiting game, but I will be updating as each publisher gets back to me. I hope you all will follow me along this tough journey. The good news, however, is that I have finished revisions on another novel of mine, and I’m just waiting to get it submission ready.

Cover Reveal for Chris Pavesic’s “The Caelimane Operation”

Cover Reveal for Chris Pavesic’s “The Caelimane Operation”

unnamedThe Caelimane Operation
When the Temples to the Goddess north of Southwatch are burned and followers of Dione are murdered, Hierocrat Catherine, a bard of the Caelimane Temple, sets out to find those responsible and to bring them to justice. With only the help of a traveling group of minstrels and a retired fae investigator, Catherine must solve the mystery before more people are killed, but will she succeed when she finds herself pitted against members of her own Temple, rogue members of the Seelie Court, and a seemingly unstoppable army of undead?
About the Darkside Codex
The Caelimane Operation is part of Musa Publishing’s Darkside Codex, a shared world series with a steampunk setting. Although steampunk forms the basis, the novels in the series explore science fiction, high fantasy, urban fantasy, horror, paranormal, romance, mystery, and noir themes. At the center of each story is the city of Southwatch and the dark cloud (a toxic stew of chemicals and pollution) that bisects not only the city, but the people who live in it. Segregation is quite literally built into the structure of the city with the rich and the powerful citizens living “sunside” while the poor and downtrodden live beneath the dark cloud.
The higher up you are in the city, the wealthier and more powerful you are.
The Caelimane Operation is scheduled for release on January 16, 2015 by Musa Publishing.
You can learn more about this at http://www.chrispavesic.com
Leading up to the publication date there will be special posts, pictures, and contests. Please check often to make sure you do not miss anything!

christAbout the Author
Chris Pavesic lives in the Midwestern United States and loves Kona coffee, steampunk, and all types of speculative fiction. Between writing projects, Chris can most often be found reading, gaming, gardening, working on an endless list of DIY household projects, or hanging out with friends.

Email: chrispavesic@outlook.com
Blog: http://www.chrispavesic.com
Twitter: @chrispavesic
Facebook: http://on.fb.me/1IvVb7W

The Stars Are Infinite Cover Reveal!

The Stars Are Infinite Cover Reveal!

Here is the what I think is the gorgeous cover of The Stars Are Infinite! 


It is the sequel  to When Stars Die.  There will be a third book that I plan to call All Stars Align, which will be the final one in The Stars Trilogy. Here is the blurb for this novel:

Alice Sheraton is slated to be executed as a witch; however, her father spares her. He sends her to Finight Hill, a safe house for witches. Here a Shadowman begins to pursue her, and from this Shadowman she learns she has been bound with a terrible fate since birth: either be a martyr to free witches from their misery, or choose to live knowing her existence will bring on more chaos. 

This novel has a  December release , and you will know more information later, especially when you sign up for the newsletter.

Now here is an interview with Alice Sheraton so that way you get to know a little bit about her before you begin to read this sequel. There are no spoilers. However, make sure you read the first book before buying this one, or else you will get confused:

Hello, Alice. It must be strange being in an interview for you, especially because you’ve spent much of your life never having any attention drawn to you. 

Alice: It’s true. Much of my life has been spent preparing me to find a suitable husband. I did go to a finishing school before coming to Finight, so I do have a great deal of education. At the same time, when I was in the other school, I was taught to never draw any attention to myself. So I am nervous about this. What will my mother think? I used to love painting, until my mother took that away from me. I am well-read, and I had my own collection of books in my room. I loved being with Sara, who liked to get into all sorts of trouble I never agreed with, but did so anyway. These things are memorable, but if my mother ever found out about them, she would beat me with a wooden board.

What are your parents like?

Alice: My father has been nothing but supportive, and I’d like to think that if I had said something about wanting to own my own life, he would have been supportive. My mother, on the other hand, is an alcoholic, which is why I was born as a witch. The Seven Deadly Sins give birth to witches, and I suppose my mother’s continual sin is gluttony.

How has being a witch impacted your life?

Alice: Dreadful. I don’t even want to think or talk about what led up to my discovery. I was imprisoned in a small, dirty room in Governor Branch’s home. He is a horrid, perverted man married to my best friend Sara, who is around my age: I am fifteen. I was slated to be executed, but my father saved me by paying  a handsome sum of gold to Governor Branch. He couldn’t refuse the money, so he and Father decided to send me off to a safe house called Finight Hill. It looks like any other finishing school, and it is in a secluded area.

What were your reactions to Finight Hill? 

Alice: I was paranoid at first. It’s lovely on the exterior, but it’s rather bland on the inside. My other finishing school was richly furnished, with original paintings, marble sculptures, fresh flowers. It was, I suppose, like the inside of a rich man’s home. Finight had no such decorations. So I was scared. I thought I was sent there to be executed, that my father truly had no idea where he was sending me. Governor Branch wanted me dead, but when I met Pastor Brandon and a boy named Nathaniel, their presence and kindness swept away any paranoia I had.

Tell us about Pastor Brandon and Nathaniel.

Alice: Pastor Brandon is nice but strange. He falls into these fits where he cries out, “Curse is everyone who hangs on a tree!” This is a sentence commonly used right before witch executions. He also coughs up some substance from time to time. I don’t know what it is, but it’s black. Even so, he has made me feel welcomed.

Nathaniel, on the other hand, is beautiful, and I saw that right from the start, though I couldn’t admit it to myself. He’s also troubled. He smokes a lot, he scratches himself, and he’s reckless, but he has made me feel welcomed at Finight, and I accepted his friendship. Master Akilah isn’t too fond of him because of his reckless behavior.

How do you feel about Master Akilah?

Alice: I can’t stand him. Neither can Pastor Brandon nor Nathaniel. He was rude to me my first day there when he introduced me, complaining that I was late, not even welcoming me. He is the one who created the unnecessarily strict rules rules for Finight, where we are watched at all times, as though we are in an asylum. We do have certain activities that we have to do throughout the day, like studying. We can go outside once a week–under strict supervision. Nathaniel is smart enough to evade some of these rules, but it eventually becomes our downfall. After a certain event takes place, the rules become worse. At that point, we can’t even have doors to our rooms.

You hear voices?

Alice: I’m unsure if the voice is real or not. It sounds real. She at first told me Pastor Brandon killed her. Then she told me I should kill him. She said he knew who I was, and I couldn’t make any sense of that. He apparently knows the future. When I fainted and woke up in my room, her final words to me were, “You will be mine.” We all thought it was stress and nerves. I thought I was insane, but I was so certain the voice was real. And it is. It truly is.

Can you tell us who the voice belongs to? 

Alice: Her name is Annarelius, a Shadowman, a dead witch. She wants me because I can set the world free from sin, allowing everyone, even witches, into Paradise.

Tell us about this Shadowman. 

Alice: I would rather not.

Are there any final words?

Alice: My story…it is mine and mine alone, rife with the darkness that is innate in the life of a witch. It was a very hard story to tell. If witches are not freed, at least my account will make them feel less alone, if my account will even be allowed to exist. Witches are insignificant. We are nothing. Those who used to love us betray us and automatically hate us when they find out we are witches. This was the case with my best friend, Sara. The Vulgate, our bible, indoctrinates people into hating us, which is why they can hate so easily. I am not sure if this hatred will ever be erased. I have never known any allies to stop the hatred. I have never known any witches to start a rebellion. But our world is filled with nothing but cruelty. The ugliness of our world surpasses its beauty. Love is the only beauty that exists, but there isn’t enough of it.

Those are some very harrowing words, Alice, but I know you will be the one to make that change. Thank you for letting me interview you. 


I hope you enjoyed Alice’s interview and will pick up the already available When Stars Die and the not-yet-released The Stars Are Infinite when you are able to pre-order it or buy it on its release day. Remember it will have a December release date and will be mentioned in a future newsletter.


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ImageAbout the Author

Amber Skye Forbes is a dancing writer who prefers pointe shoes over street shoes, leotards over skirts, and ballet buns over hairstyles. She loves striped tights and bows and will edit your face with a Sharpie if she doesn’t like your attitude. She lives in Augusta, Georgia where she writes dark fiction that will one day put her in a psychiatric ward…again. But she doesn’t care because her cat is a super hero who will break her out.  

Guest Blogger Victoria Perkins

Guest Blogger Victoria Perkins

Hello everyone! Victoria Perkins will be guest blogging for me today, doing a piece about her book, The Dragon Three.


Hero stories are full of people with extraordinary gifts who are generally thought to be abnormal and are often outcasts. Then we have the people who believe themselves to be ordinary, but who actually have great powers that just need to be activated. These people rise to the occasion to use their gifts to save the day. While I love these stories, I had an idea for something different.

The Dragon Three started off as a simple concept. At least, it was simple in my head. There’s this world where everyone has magic except one girl. She’s been born different, a freak who can’t do even the simplest spells. Her parents hide this from everyone, including their other children, and teach her at home, keeping her isolated to protect her. Then, when she turns fifteen, she’s sent off to an institute of higher learning, somewhere her parents can’t protect her. And that’s where the story of Brina Fine begins.

Naturally, the next question became, what if she goes to school prepared to be found out and sent home in disgrace, but through a fluke, is able to stay, undetected, long enough to make friends? I gave Brina these friends and realized that her story wasn’t supposed to be about someone who’s different keeping her secret and living a ‘normal’ life. She had been born that way for a reason. Enter the dragon.

I’d originally envisioned Brina’s story to only be the first section, Dragon Eyes, and then thought about making two sequels, Dragon Blood and Dragon Heart, focusing on her two friends respectively. The more I wrote, however, the more I realized that I wanted to put all three together. In doing that, the idea of a ‘normal’ person in a fantastical world was no longer the entire book and I had to delve deeper into the characters to find what made them into this trio I was calling The Dragon Three.

Finally, I discovered that it wasn’t magic or the lack thereof that made them heroes. Each of these three were charged with a task that only they could accomplish, and it was the acceptance of their tasks, without knowing for certain if they would come out alive, that made them heroes. The journey of the hero isn’t about the feats or the obstacles overcome, but the willingness to do what is right, no matter the cost.

You can buy her book on Amazon.