Recipe for a good book

cookbook-02You will need:

1 fully realized setting (if making from scratch, see world building recipe on pg 42)

A unique narrative voice

1-2 well-developed main characters, add side characters as necessary6croyblzi


An engaging opening

A satisfying conclusion

A dash of theme

Romance, optional


Prepare your work surface and clear your mind. Mix together the setting, voice, and at least one character to create your engaging opening.  Add atmosphere as needed. Introduce your conflict and any remaining characters. Stir until well developed. Throw in a dash of theme and romance, if you’re using it and write for 3-6 months until everything comes together. Finish off with a satisfying conclusion and let the whole thing sit for as long as you can stand before editing.

Once edited, bake with a publisher until done, and repeat.

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Okay, this was just for fun. But for real, we’re opening our submissions this time next month. October 24th to be exact! Here’s what we’ll be looking for:

*imaginative settings, creative world building, other places, worlds, times, or versions of reality.

*believable and consistent characters who develop and change over the course of the story.

*mixed genres, genre bending, sci-fi/romance, historical/fantasy, adventure/mystery, speculative/poetry, books that don’t *fit* anywhere else.

*engaging writing with a strong opening that pulls the reader in and keeps them wanting more.

*any age group from children’s picture books to adult fiction. This is one area we’re not picky about.

*full length novels or novellas. For short stories, please take a look at our imprint Adventure Worlds Press.

For more detailed submissions information and requirements, please see our submissions page on our website. Thanks for reading and I look forward to receiving your submissions!


And now for something completely different.

Here at Mirror World Publishing, we pride ourselves on outside the box thinking. As a small independent start-up in 2014, no one, least of all us, could have predicted that in less than three years we would grow from three authors with a handful of books to twelve authors with over twenty books between us and a new imprint coming under our banner. Well, you’ll be happy to know we’re not stopping there.

For the past year, I have been actively searching for an event/retail space. I wanted somewhere our books and authors could belong. Somewhere we could hold book launch events, workshops and signings so that our local readers would know where to find us. I knew that on top of everything else I was already doing keeping the gears turning here at Mirror World, I could not do it on my own, so I thought I was stuck.

sho-logoThat’s when I found Sho: Art, Spirit and Performance. I was familiar with Sho through their regular event ‘From the Page to the Stage’ which combines theatre and literature by having actors read short stories by local writers to a captive audience. What I didn’t know until I looked into the organization further is that their mission is specifically to partner with other artists and creative organizations to innovate, collaborate, produce and present art across all creative borders.

Sho is a theatre and a workshop space, but more than that, it’s a collection of like-minded artists who live to collaborate and bring art in all its forms to Windsor. From life drawing classes, to theatre performances, to literary reading nights, they do it all. And what would be more perfect than to have that kind of creative energy and spirit of showmanship helping to bolster our efforts here? I knew I couldn’t do it all myself, but with the help of such a strongly established creative presence in Windsor, I thought I just might have a chance.

And so I joined Sho as an associate member. And wouldn’t you know it, the collaboration began at once. Not only will our next event, Worlds Collide Gala, take place at Sho’s main space 628 Monmouth Rd, Windsor on September 30th, 2016 at 7pm, but I also met with and started working with some fabulously talented people, including artist/entrepreneur Owen Swain.

toudesketchAnd so, I would like to announce our next project. In partnership with Sho: Art, Spirit, and Performance and the amazingly talented Owen Swain of #tourdesketch, we will be producing an adult colouring book titled #Tourdesketch Windsor. Filled with sketches of the sights of our hometown, #tourdesketch Windsor is our way of thinking outside the box and bringing you a glimpse into the world we live in.

It was my intention to tell you all about Owen Swain and the work he’s done with his innovative cycling and sketching events, but I’ve gone on long enough for today. Stay tuned for part two of this announcement by subscribing to this blog or checking back again soon. Next post, I’ll introduce you all to our newest addition to the Mirror World family, Owen Swain, and his upcoming book,  #Tourdesketch Windsor

Thanks for reading!

Let us pick your next read

Business_CardLibraryfron copyAs always, we’re keeping busy and we’ve got lots of new developments coming your way. My goal is to develop a community around the idea that if you like one of our books, you’ll like them all. To that end, we’ve developed the membership program. For only $19.95 a year, you get unlimited access to our entire ebook collection, a discount on paperbacks and automatic inclusion into our facebook group where authors and fans meet to chat about their favorite books and their experiences with the writing and publishing process. Not to mention the fact that you get first dibs on all of our new releases, which includes getting them delivered to you well before the release date. It doesn’t get much better than that.

WatcherFront copyAnd in case you’re not ready to dive in and become a member, you can always pick up an e-copy of our monthly featured book for just $0.99. This month that’s Joshua Pantalleresco’s The Watcher and the promo code is: DRAGON So go ahead and try that one out by clicking here.

Now for something a little different. This past week I’ve been working hard to put together a series of quizzes to help you pick your next favorite read! There are three versions of the quiz, one for kids, another for young adults, and the last for adults. And here they are:


Kids: https://www.buzzfeed.com/mirrorworldpub/which-mirror-world-book-should-you-be-reading-kid-2h3t4
Young Adults: https://www.buzzfeed.com/mirrorworldpub/which-mirror-world-book-should-you-be-reading-now-2h3t4
Adults: https://www.buzzfeed.com/mirrorworldpub/which-of-these-mirror-world-book-should-you-be-rea-2h3t4

I also rearranged our bookstore to make it easier to navigate by these age categories and included a new release section! Also, if you want to see our upcoming novels for this year, please check out our 2016 Catalogue. You can also subscribe to this blog to keep up with all the updates, changes, events, and new releases!

Thanks for reading!


May’s Feature is… you guessed it, Black Lightning!

I know, I know, we’re a little late announcing the feature for this month, but here it is! Black Lightning by K.S. Jones launched on the 17th of May and it is now available worldwide, wherever books are sold, in ebook and paperback form. And to celebrate this fact, we’re making the ebook only $0.99 in our store for the rest of the month with the promo code: LIGHTNING. You can head over to the store now to check it out and pick up a copy for yourself or any middle grade readers you know.

In other news, we launched our Mirror World Library Card program last month and with it we ran a giveaway for a Mirror World Prize Pack. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, you can read all about the program and find out how to get access to unlimited downloads of Mirror World Books by visiting our website. Congratulations to our winner of the Prize Pack; Nikki and Michael Kratzer! You should be receiving your signed books and swag in the mail shortly. For everyone else, don’t worry there’s still a chance to win! Current members and any sign-ups between now and June 30th will be automatically entered into a giveaway of a paperback copy of our new release; Black Lightning by K.S. Jones!

Membershipbanner copy

A quick update; we’re still working on getting the audiobook of Black Lightning available for purchase and we’ll make sure to do an announcement when that goes live, hopefully soon. In the meantime, you can check out Black Lightning here.

Our next release is coming up fast; This Night Sucks by Elizabeth J. M. Walker will be going live for pre-orders in the nest couple of days. (Which means Library Card holders can get reading as early as this week!) And the official release will be on June 17th. If you’d like to find out more about This Night Sucks in the meantime, you can check out our coming soon page!

Are you excited for these new releases? Do you have any questions about becoming a member? Put your thoughts in the comments below!

Runners gotta Run

We’re hitting the ground running this month. We’ve got a number of things on the go and some big announcements right around the corner. Before I get into that, though, I want to tell you about a podcast that’s currently airing from our friends over at Dice and Stuff.

As you may or may not remember, Robert Dowsett and I did some voice acting a while back for Dice and Stuff’s Cowl Cops podcast. Well, we’re back at it. This time, the podcast series is called Runner’s Run and it’s a post-apocalyptic survival adventure set in a world created by Shades of Vengeance for a kickstarter they are currently running. In it, I play Phoenix, a hardened Runner and crack shot who’s seen it all and has decided she’s had enough of the hard life. Robert plays Miles, or “Mr. Money”, a fast-talking con man with something to prove and a friend of ours, Sabrina, plays the smart-mouthed medically-inclined Babs.Runners-Run-001-210x210Runners-Run-002-210x210

The podcast will be airing over the next couple of weeks, but the first two episodes are available now on the Dice and Stuff website, http://www.diceandstuff.com/category/runners-run/
You can also check out the Kickstarter here: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/shadesofvengeance/era-survival

Speaking of voice actors, we’ve got two of them working hard for us right now. I’m pleased to be able to confirm that we are in production for two audio books. The first, Black Lightning by K.S. Jones will be voiced by Robert Dowsett and the second, This Night Sucks by Elizabeth J. M. Walker, will be voiced by Sarah Jane. The intention is to launch the audiobook versions of these two books at the same time as the print and e-versions launch. So keep an eye out for Black Lightning on May 17th and This Night Sucks on June 17th.

And don’t worry, I haven’t forgotten about this month’s feature. You may have seen some hints already on our website or social media pages, but we’ve got something big in the works for this month and the announcement will go out on Monday! All I will say for now is that this April we will be running the biggest and best giveaway we’ve ever done, giving you the chance to win a super awesome prize pack! So if you haven’t already, please make sure to subscribe to this blog or check back on Monday for updates!

We hit our goal!

Now let’s pass it.


#85K Challenge. 85,000 words in 90 Days.  On January 1st 2016 Murandy and I started writing our next novel,  #Uncharted. Using the challenge as motivation to write faster, better, and as often as possible we started strong with nearly half the challenge done at the end if the first month. The second month we kept a good pace, but coming up on the end of February I went in for surgery and spent the next few weeks recovering.

Whether it was the two weeks off course or the fact that we didn’t feel the pressure anymore after having gotten so far ahead of ourselves, we certainly slowed down in month three, though we kept up with writing a few thousand words every couple of days and still managed to complete the challenge with two weeks left until the deadline.

But we’re not satisfied with that anymore. Now that we’ve reached Chapter 30 of a possible 35, we want to finish the first draft as soon as we can manage it. Optimally by the end of March, the original last day of the challenge.

Think we can do it?

One month into the #85K Challenge – What We’ve Learned

As you may or may not know, Murandy and I decided to participate in the #85K Writing Challenge with our newest novel in progress, Uncharted. The challenge, which began January 1st, 2016 is to write 85,0000 words in 90 days. Now that we’ve completed month one of the challenge and are going into month two, I thought I would give you all an update of our progress and a few thoughts on our experience with the challenge so far.

USSConstellationVsInsurgenteFirst, a little bit about our project. Uncharted is a romantic comedy/adventure set in the same world as our last novel, Unintended, though it is not a sequel. The story follows Meredith, an Acolyte of the Temple of Saegard, who decides the eve before her swearing in as a full priestess, that the life she’s prepared for isn’t for her. She flees the temple only to later discover that she has been blamed for the theft of a very valuable artifact used to foretell the future which went missing on the same night she disappeared. Meredith seeks refuge on The Clover, a ship belonging to Captain Reginald Lawrence and the enigmatic private businessman Grey Rhodes. Despite the three of them getting off on the wrong foot when Meredith is caught hiding as a stowaway, Grey and Reginald later vow to help Meredith hide from the various groups looking for her while they work to clear her name and discover the true culprit behind the theft of the legendary Celestial Bowl.

With the exception of some planning and early set-up, Murandy and I Woo_hoo!_posterstarted Uncharted on January 1st and we’re proud to be able to say that in the first 30 days of the challenge we wrote 47,000 words!

Now, I’m not sure how this compares to our usual writing speed. It certainly feels like we’re writing very quickly, but in the past we’ve always kept count of our progress using page numbers or how many chapters we’ve completed. I remember that while writing Mirror’s Hope, for example, we had a goal of 100 pages per month in word, but that doesn’t really give us an accurate word count. What I do know is that the first draft of Mirror’s Hope took us about three months to complete and was somewhere around 115,000 words, which is approx 38,000 a month.

So here’s what we’ve learned so far:

  1. It’s super beneficial to write as often as possible

We knew this already, but it’s nice to get confirmation. It’s not always possible to write every day and there’s no use trying to keep ourselves to impossible standards, but writing as often as possible helps to keep the words flowing and was a big help in writing so much in one month!

  1. It’s motivating to ‘keep score’

Murandy bought a calendar with ships on it to reflect the imagesnaval themes in Uncharted. I love it. Every time we stop writing for the night, I use a red marker to note how many words we wrote that day and what our current total is. On top of that we get to announce our word counts to the #85K facebook group for added celebration of our small successes.

  1. We will have to go back and flesh some scenes out

When writing quickly, it’s easier to focus on dialogue and action to keep the story moving forward, so looking back, we’ve already noticed that we will have to go back and work on the wordbuilding details and the descriptions of the setting and characters. But that’s ok, that’s what the second draft is for!

  1. Plans change

Murandy and I are not planners. We do however, come up with a basic outline and jot down ideas for scenes as they come. We also keep note of facts that are important to tie in again further in the story. Writing this quickly has really shown us how easily our best laid plans can go awry. The story has taken on a mind of its own thanks to willful characters, but we’ll make course corrections as needed and get the story to where it needs to be by the end!

  1. Life gets in the way, but that’s ok!

Early in the month, Murandy had an unexpected trip to take which caused us to miss about five days of writing. We compensated for this by writing as much beforehand as possible and then by resuming as soon as we were able. At the time, five days missed seems like a disaster, but in the grand scheme, it didn’t really hurt us at all.

Have you participated in a writing challenge before? What did you learn from the experience?

We need your help!

One of our goals in 2016 is to grow our brand. The problem is we’ve had some difficulty settling on a tagline that really represents what we’re all about. So, we’re coming to you for advice! If you have a minute, please look over the options and cast your vote using the poll below!

What Do You Think Survey Poll Question

This world is only the beginning…

This is the tagline we’ve been using (off and on) for the past two years. It’s Murandy’s top pick and has sentimental value for us since it’s a reference to Crimson Winter, one of our earlier titles.

Worlds within Words

This one is my top pick. I think it says what we need it to. The question is, what do you think?

Escape the Mundane

This is an option we tried out for a time. It has the benefit of having the word ‘escape’ in there.

Wildly Creative Escapism Fiction

I’ve been told this one is a bit of a mouthful, however it is descriptive.

Of course, if you have any other suggestions, we’d be glad to hear them! Or, you can simply vote on your favorite:

Which tagline suits us best?




Cover Reveal: The Curse at Pirate’s Cove by Rita Monette!

Introducing our last new release for 2015 and the second installment in the Nikki Landry Swamp Legend Series, The Curse at Pirate’s Cove by Rita Monette will officially launch November 17th, 2015!


“When one man’s treasure is another man’s curse.”

Nikki Landry is turning eleven years old, and is looking forward to riding her bike to school. That is until it falls apart. Papa can’t afford a new one. Is she doomed to ride the smelly old school bus from now on?

Hearing of an old pirate ship, and a legend about long-ago pirates burying treasure on a nearby swamp island, Nikki sees a way out. But when she makes a birthday wish for the pirate’s gold, things go terribly wrong. Did her wish trigger an ancient curse?

Join Nikki and her friends as they find themselves sailing away aboard a haunted schooner with ghostly pirates into the Gulf of Mexico … and into the year eighteen fourteen.

How will they ever find their way back home?

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Here’s an excerpt:


Eleven. I thought I’d feel all grown up and stuff when that day came. I looked at my hands. Same as yesterday. Nothing really changed, ’cept—for a few months anyway—I was older than my best friend, Patti. I poked my dog, Snooper, in the side. “Wake up, lazy bones. It’s my birthday. I’m Uh-lev-vun.” A giggle crept up into my throat. Papa had said when I turned three syllables I could ride my bike to school instead of taking the smelly old school bus. And today—the second day of February—is that day.

The early dawn light peeking through my window threw ghostly shadows around my tiny room. A tugboat’s horn honked in the distance. Soon, it would make its way down the bayou, pushing a loaded barge past our houseboat. Papa’s roosters crowed one after the other as if competing for the morning call. The strange creature living out there on Ghost Dog Island still howled across the swamp sometimes at night, but I’d sorta gotten used to it. Bayou Platte seemed eerily peaceful.

“Nikki, you up?” Mama yelled from the kitchen.

“Yes, ma’am.” I swung my legs over the edge of the bed, and my bare feet touched the cold floor. I quickly pulled ’em up and jerked the covers back over my toes. “Brrr, it’s freezing in here.”

Mama came into my room. “We got a little bit of a cold snap last night. Put your boots on today.” She walked over to my closet. “Here’s a flannel shirt you can wear. It’s only fifty degrees out, but it should warm up later today.” Mama laid the shirt and a pair of socks on my bed and sat down next to me. “By the way, honey, happy birthday.”

I smiled wide as a bullfrog’s grin. “I get to ride my bike to school today, right?” I slid on my socks.

“That’s what we talked about.” She handed me the shirt. “It’s a long ride, and I’m still uncertain if that old bike is safe.”

“It’s not that far. I’ve—” I pressed my lips together so I wouldn’t blab. Mama didn’t know how many times I’d snuck off to town on that rusty old thing.

“We’ll talk some more about it at breakfast.”

“Humph.” I slammed my head back down on the pillow. I knew what talking more about it meant. Snooper growled from under the quilt as if to say, let me sleep some more.

Mama stood up. “Stop acting like you’re still a baby, and I might think you’re mature enough to ride to school by yourself.” She crossed the small room, her slippers scraping against the rough wooden floor. “Now get dressed and come to breakfast.” She closed the door behind her.

“She’s not gonna let me, Snooper. I just know it.” I sat up and threw my clothes at the door. “That’s okay, I’ll ride my bike far, far away and she’ll never even know where I’m at. Then she’ll see how mature I am.”

My beagle let out a low whimper.

The Curse at Pirate’s Cove is expected to launch November 17th, 2015. Until then, keep an eye out for pre-order opportunities and more information by following this blog or signing up for our new release newsletter here.

Rita-studio pic cropped-cropped

Rita Monette was born and raised in Southwest Louisiana. She loves to write stories set in the beautiful, yet mysterious, bayous and swamps of her home state.

Her middle grade series, The Nikki Landry Swamp Legends, is based on tales told by her father—who made his living in those bayous—of reasons to stay out of the swamp.

She currently lives with her husband, four lap dogs, and one lap cat, in the mountains of Tennessee. Besides writing and illustrating, she loves watching the many birds that make their habitat on the Cumberland Plateau, working in the garden, and frequenting waterfalls.

Cover Reveal: Legend of the Timekeepers by Sharon Ledwith!


Legend of the Timekeepers by Sharon Ledwith launches August 1st!

Whether or not you’ve read The Last Timekeepers and the Arch of Atlantis, you will still enjoy this fast paced and adventure-filled prequel by the time-travelling expert Sharon Ledwith!


There is no moving forward without first going back.

Lilith was a young girl with dreams and a family before the final destruction of Atlantis shattered those dreams and tore her family apart. Now refugees, Lilith and her father make their home in the Black Land. This strange, new country has no place in Lilith’s heart until a beloved high priestess introduces Lilith to her life purpose—to be a Timekeeper and keep time safe.

Summoned through the seventh arch of Atlantis by the Children of the Law of One, Lilith and her newfound friends are sent into Atlantis’ past, and given a task that will ultimately test their courage and try their faith in each other. Can the Timekeepers stop the dark magus Belial before he changes the seers’ prophecy? If they fail, then their future and the earth’s fate will be altered forever.


Here’s an excerpt:

Lilith narrowed her fair brows. “Where’s the seventh arch gone, Father?”

He smiled, revealing his pearl-white teeth. “To the Black Land.”

Did I hear Father correctly? The Black Land? Lilith balled her fists and slammed them against the sides of her slim hips. “But…but, Father, there are snakes in the Black Land! Poisonous snakes with hoods that make their scaly, ugly heads bigger! I am not going there! I want to go with Uncle Kukulkan!”

Kukulkan stifled a chuckle. Segund gave his older brother an angry stare and turned his attention back to Lilith. “Now, Lilith, you’ve simply got to get over this fear of snakes you have. After all, we are known to the world as the Serpent People.”

Lilith pursed her lips. “That’s because of the human-snake hybrids the dark magi created!”

“That is not the reason, Lilith,” Segund said, tapping the tip of her nose. “Serpents know the earth better than any other creature and Atlanteans understand this. Serpents teach us how to transmute the poison of our experiences into healing energy to share with the rest of the world.”

“Your father is correct,” Kukulkan said. “Besides, there are snakes living in the western land where I’m going too. Long, thick snakes that wrap around your body and slowly squeeze you to death before they eat you.”

Lilith squealed and covered her mouth.

Segund slapped his brother across the back of his head. “You’re not helping, feather-brain!”

Kukulkan rubbed his head. He winked at Lilith. “Don’t worry, Lilith, your father will keep you safe from these poisonous, hooded snakes.”

Another tremor shook the white marble tiles beneath their feet, and a crack that resembled a long serpent crept up between Lilith and her remaining family members, cutting them off from each other. Crystal dishes on granite shelves next to the large, stone fireplace in the main room crashed to the floor. Lilith jumped and hugged herself, feeling her soft linen top cling to her sweaty body like an oyster stuck in its shell.

Segund leaped over the crack and snatched his daughter up in his strong arms. He hugged her fiercely. “No harm will come to you, Lilith. I’ll see to that. I promise on your mother’s honor.”


Legend of the Timekeepers is expected to launch August 1st, 2015. Until then, keep an eye out for pre-order opportunities and more information by following this blog or signing up for our new release newsletter here.

Sharon Ledwith and pets #3

Sharon Ledwith is the author of the middle-grade/young adult time travel series, THE LAST TIMEKEEPERS, and is represented by Walden House (Books & Stuff) for her teen psychic series, MYSTERIOUS TALES FROM FAIRY FALLS. When not writing, researching, or revising, she enjoys reading, exercising, anything arcane, and an occasional dram of scotch. Sharon lives a serene, yet busy life in a southern tourist region of Ontario, Canada, with her hubby, one spoiled yellow Labrador and a moody calico cat.

Learn more about Sharon Ledwith on her WEBSITE and BLOG. Look up her AMAZON AUTHOR page for a list of current books. Stay connected on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, GOOGLE+, TUMBLR, and GOODREADS. Check out THE LAST TIMEKEEPERS TIME TRAVEL SERIES Facebook page.