Almost There: July 2013

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Cover Reveal: Uncontrollably Wasted by C. Elizabeth Vescio

The fact that I can now see book two of The Wasted Series makes me oh so happy! I mean, come on, check out Almost There's love for C. Elizabeth Vescio. Being a part of the cover reveal for Uncontrollably Wasted just makes my freaking day!

I thought Elegantly Wasted's cover was edgy, sexy, and I have to say I love this one more. It's so...Fairholm.

Now that you're all excited about this cover too (because, let's face it, you are) I'll give you the deets on book 2!

Name: Uncontrollably Wasted

Genre: New Adult

Book Release: Fall 2013 by Luna Station Press

Series Website: The Wasted Series

Goodreads: Uncontrollably Wasted (Add it to your to-read shelf!)

If you haven't read book one or just want a fun as hell refresher, here are some links:

So, are you excited yet?!
Jack of all trades and stereotypical black sheep, C. Elizabeth has been writing somewhat dark and morbid since that teen angst hit in the early 90's- probably because her dad was a mortician. After pursuing a degree in English, she changed gears to photography and design in 2006... although she kept penning stories for fun while reading the works of Edgar Allen Poe, Oscar Wilde and Hemingway (whom she adores even though he was a huge douche canoe). In 2009, her life shifted considerably and she found herself writing Elegantly Wasted- helping her sort out a bunch of stupid feelings and other lame stuff. 

Want more of Cara and Elegantly Wasted?

-Tyler Anne (aka Chick Tyler)

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Writer Talk: Erin's Grammar Guide

Due to the Annes trying to finish their books, they have asked some of their favorite bloggers/writers to guest post! Enjoy!

Thank you, Tyler and Holli, for hosting me on your blog today! I am thrilled to have the chance to “talk” to your readers/blog followers!

Today, I’d like to talk about a subject near and dear to my heart—grammar. LOL! Yes, you heard me right…grammar. My family and friends often say I’m a member of the Grammar Police (actually they say something not quite so nice, but I’m rephrasing). Lest you think I’m the master of all things word related, I will confess right now…I cannot spell, at all. Seriously, I could not spell certain words without assistance if my life depended on it. My critique partners also point out my issues with formal speech (probably because I’m trying to follow all the grammar rules) and hyphenation (which for the record, I just misspelled).

You might ask, who even loves grammar, and when did you develop this affliction? Well, I went to one school up until the tenth grade and learned very little about grammar there. When I switched to a new school in the eleventh grade, my world changed. The teacher started my first day of class by saying, “Today, we will discuss predicate nominative and predicate adjective,” to which I replied, “A wha-wha?” I knew a noun, verb, and possibly an adverb, but nothing more. To her credit, my sweet teacher, Mrs. Hinton (she’s a writer too and has published books you can find here), stayed after school with me for six months to catch me up on grammar.

I ended up at a college that obsesses over grammar. Freshmen must take a course called “Grammar and Composition” and pass an end-of-the-semester test with a “C” or higher to continue on to the next class.  In preparation for that test, I took a free class offered by the head of the English department and learned all sorts of amazing tips and tricks. I passed the test with flying colors and received a position in the school’s learning center as a grammar and writing tutor. So, I spent the remainder of my college years trying to impart the grammar wisdom my high school teacher and college professors instilled.

Now that I am a soon-to-be-published author, I have the privilege of working with fellow authors. We critique one another’s “works in progress” to sharpen and improve them for submission. My critique partners recently dubbed me “The Passive Voice Hunter,” a name I quite like.

Without further ado, let me introduce common grammar/writing errors. I hope the following information will be useful whether you are a writer, business professional, student, or any other type of human being (LOL!).

1) Passive voice
The use of active voice improves writing and flow. Try to avoid passive verbs like: was, were, had been, is, has been, had been, will be.

A passive example: “I was editing my friend’s work.” 
An active example: “I edited my friend’s work.” 

2) Ending in a preposition 
Try not to end sentences with prepositions.

Example of preposition: “She didn’t know where he came from.” 
Correction: “She didn’t know from where he came.”** 

**This correction sounds slightly pompous and awkward, so the writer would benefit from reworking the whole sentence.
Reworking option (there are many other ways to change it): “He appeared by her side without warning.” 

Common prepositions: of, in, to, for, with, on, at, from, by, about, into, as, after, over, against, before

3) Commas (cue the “dun-da-dun” music)
I typically joke, “People treat commas like sprinkles.”

Here are the main rules for commas (there are more, but we’ll stick to the big ones):
a) Serial commas (this particular rule changes every once in a while, so keep an eye out on MLA). Right now, commas go before the “and” in a series. 
Example: Apples, banana, strawberries, and blueberries. 
b) Conjunction and commas. Commas can be used to separate two sentences when used with a conjunction. Common conjunctions: and, but, or, so, yet 
Example: Jenna believed her father when he told her John left, but she felt compelled to discover the reason. 
Incorrect usage of a comma: Jenna believed her father when he told her John left, but felt compelled to discover the reason. (No comma is needed in this sentence because there are not two sentences.) This sentence should read: Jenna believed her father when he told her John left but felt compelled to discover the reason. 
c) Introductory statements. When you begin a sentence with a helper statement, you should use a comma to separate the two piece of information. Introductory statements with more than three words require a comma. With statements fewer than three words, the comma is optional, but I always choose to include it. 
Example: When you begin a sentence with a helper statement, you should use a comma to separate the two pieces of information. (Clever how I did that, huh? I bet you can find a few more in my explanation as well…) 
d) Parenthetic elements. Use commas to offset information you wish to include but is not crucial to the sentence. When you place two commas (or one comma in the front and period at the end), you are signaling the reader that this information is NOT necessary. If it is necessary, do not offset in commas. 
Example 1: My best friend, Dawn, told me a hysterical joke yesterday. 
*Note—I only have one best friend, hence the name “Dawn” is unnecessary. However, be careful in these situations. “My friend Dawn told me a hysterical joke yesterday” has no comma because (hopefully) I have more than one friend. 
**To explore the note a bit further, here is another example: “My brother, Richard, graduated top in his class.” Based on this statement, you should know I only have one brother. If I said, “My brother Richard graduated top in his class,” you would know I have more than one brother. 
Example 2: Charlotte loved going to baseball games, though she preferred football.  
The football segment could be totally omitted and not compromise the integrity of the sentence. 
Example 3: He moved toward the door, placing his hand on the knob, and turned to give her one last look. 
The hand on the knob adds to the sentence but is not crucial. The sentence could be just fine without it. “He moved toward the door and turned to give her one last look.” 
e) Separating adjectives. Use commas to separate adjectives that both relate to the noun. If one adjective is describing the other, leave out the comma. 
Example: She pushed the big, yellow ball down the hill. 
Big and yellow both describe ball, so the comma needs to be there. 
Incorrect use: She pushed the bright, yellow ball down the hill. 
Bright describes yellow, not the ball, so no comma is needed. Should read: She pushed the bright yellow ball down the hill. 

Though there are plenty more grammar rules I could share, I think I’ll stop before your eyes glaze over (if they haven’t already—LOL). Often, it’s hard to see the errors in your own work. Asking friends, family, or co-workers to proofread your material before you send it out can be most helpful. My beta readers (Kim Sharp, Ginny Hunsberger, Danielle Craver, and Dawn Ward) as well as my critique partners (Mary Waibel, Michelle Pickett, and Meradeth Houston) locate the grammatical, spelling, logic, and voice errors in my pieces. I encourage you to find a group of people to help you as well.

If you have grammar questions, please feel free to ask. I love to talk “shop.” Thanks again for hosting me, Tyler and Holli!

Also, if you want to know more about me and my upcoming novel, The Prophecy, please like me on Facebook (Erin Albert Books), follow me on Twitter (@ErinAlbertBooks), and/or visit my website

Until next time,

Erin Albert is an author and fitness trainer. Since she picked up Morris the Moose Goes to School at age four, she has been infatuated with the written word. She went on to work as a grammar and writing tutor in college and is still teased by her family and friends for being a member of the "Grammar Police." In her free time, Erin enjoys acting, running, kickboxing, and, of course, reading and writing.

Remember to check Erin out at:

Facebook - Twitter - Website

Monday, July 1, 2013

July Resolution

Normally, we post a structured resolutions post, inspired by She Learns as She Goes. (Her July Resolutions post can be found here.) However, this month we are doing something a bit different.

See, Holli and I are making one huge commitment/goal for the month of July.

Drum roll, please!

We are finishing our books. End. Of. Story. 

If you saw our Monthly Resolutions: June Report Card post then you might be a little wary of our ability to complete such huge tasks, but it's because of our books that last month got hectic! We've been planning, plotting, writing, and getting ready for July for the past few months. 

Why did we decide July was the it month? Well, because of Camp NaNoWriMo! We signed up so that Camp can help get our butts into writing gear. You should too! 

This month our personal goals as well as Almost There's goals are being combined into one giant goal: Finish the first draft of our books.

However, since we have a wonderful steady stream of readers, we will still post here! They won't all be Holli Anne and Tyler Anne but we have some wonderful guest bloggers stepping up to the plate to help us out.

So, be patient with us and send some good writing mojo feelings our way.

If you'd like to be bunk mates or just follow along, our Camp links are bellow. If you want us to follow you put your link in the comments!

Monthly Report Card: June Resolutions

Let's be real here, not every month's resolutions are going to be met with the diligence they deserve. Life gets busy, priorities shift, and not everything goal gets addressed in full.

It's fine.

Last month's resolutions post can be found here. As always, we are joining She Learns as She Goes in doing a monthly report card. Her report card can be found here.

Holli Anne's Report Card:

1. Write every morning! D
You know how people usually set goals and then get all gung-ho about them at first? Total opposite this month. I woke up and wrote in the mornings probably three times this month. However, I DID write at other times and make some great progress on outlining/character development for CampNaNoWriMo (where I will be writing the first draft of my book this month)! Just not in the mornings, most likely…

2. Keep up my running schedule A-
I definitely have kept running up. I haven't really gotten much faster on my times or anything, but I've been exercising regularly, which is the most important thing for me at this point.

3. Continue down the healthy eating track B+
I'm pretty happy with our household eating habits these days! We aren't like totally off the sugar/junk food, but we have cut back A LOT! The gluten-free diet wasn't really improving my husband's skin condition, so we've decided it's not for us, but we are still going to keep many of the healthy habits we've developed and go easy on the carbs/bread.

4. Read my heart out! B-
My goal was to finish all my unfinished books that I've started. There were five. I read 3.5…so progress?

5. Paint my house! FFFFF

Just hit me in the face if you ever see me in person.

Tyler Anne's Report Card:

1. Have a successful first part of TV Inspiration: Lost! D-
The ONLY reason I gave myself a D- instead a flat out F is because I loved the one TV Inspiration post I did (here). Why haven't I done more? Well, life happened and I couldn't watch enough Lost every night to be able to write true to what I originally wanted to do with TV Inspiration. Now, I'm not giving up on this series, I just didn't stay true to my "every week" thing. Whoops!

2. Keep true to my "diet" B
I'm pretty proud of my whole counting calories "diet." It's made me shun most of the sugar I craze and I'm at a better weight for my height now. I just have to be a little bit stronger with what I take in during the weekends. I have a tendency to smudge the numbers then!

3. Write 8 pages (or more!) everyday C
Wow, I was certainly ambitious last month with this goal! I've been writing everyday, but definitely not 8 pages per day. Stay tuned to July's resolutions to see how this ambitious goal gets amplified to straight up ridiculous! 

4. Read all the unread books currently on my Nook F
Okay, I had 8 unread books. I read one and a half. SO SUE ME!

Almost There's Report Card:

1. Be more active on our Facebook page C
Remember, we have both been social media managers for others as a part of our past/current jobs. So, when it comes to doing the Facebook dance for the blog, we aren't all up in it because we get social media tired. We are getting better at it though, slowly! Go see for yourself.

2. Stick to our blogging schedule B
No, we aren't counting our blogging series. It's fine. Everything else we are proud about!

-The Annes


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