Tuesday 30 August 2022


Jessie is trying to be a friend, but all she's getting is attitude...

BUY NOW: http://www.books2read.com/TWINGE

[ID: A red checked background, with the title CRAMPING CHRONICLES: THE FIRST TWINGE at the top and Out now in ebook, paperback & audiobook just below the title. The except reads:

She turned back to look at me. “Yes, and you're Jessie,” she said.
It didn't sound friendly or welcoming. She actually gave the impression of being quite cold and distant.
“I mean no offence, Jessie, but I'm actually trying to look for a book here. I have an essay due and unlike some people, I can't wait for someone to do it for me.”
“What's that supposed to mean?!” I said, losing my temper a little.

At the top is Joey Paul and just below that the website www.joeypaulonline.com, in the bottom left corner is the Readers' Favorite Review seal, and in the bottom right corner is the logo for Bug Books. END ID]


Monday 29 August 2022

The Trials Of An Indie Author: Choosing Your Team


One of the great things about being indie is that you get to choose who works for you. That's not me throwing shade on trad pub at all. They have great editors and other people working with their authors that indies just don't have access to. But one thing I do love about choosing who I work with is that I get to make sure they're people that I trust, that share the vision for my work, and that also support me as I keep going through the publishing process.

I know that it can be really daunting when you're first starting out, or even when you're having to choose a new team for some reason, because there's all this choice and you have no idea where to start with it all. It took me a while to be able to get the editing team I have. I went through lots of one-off editors, I was let down by others, and one of the reasons I stick with the team I have is because they're so good at what they do, but they also never lead me wrong.

So how do you go about choosing a team? Here are some of my tips for the process!


This is a great way for you to get a feel for what working with that person is going to be like. Especially when it comes to editing, you want someone that you can actually work with. You don't want to be expecting a certain level of editing and come to find out that they don't offer that or they don't do it the way that works for you. It might not always be possible to get a sample edit, but if it's there, take that chance to get some idea of how they work and what they can do for you.


I don't just mean about the editing, but also about the way they work, and the thoughts they have on your category and genre. My editing team are all people that I know I can talk through problems with. They're people that I know I can also chat with about other things to do with the book. I want to be working with people that I can actually talk to. I don't mean pouring out my life story, but about the project, and about the plot and themes and the like. That, for me, is something I really do appreciate.


This isn't always possible if they're someone who's just starting out, but if not, then you can always reach out to other clients and ask for their experience when it comes to working with them. This applies not just to the editing, but things like cover design and beyond. You want to be sure that you're working with someone who's going to deliver on their end of things and with whom it's not going to be a horrible experience. You don't want that when it comes to any part of the publishing process, because that's already a stressful time as it is, without things being added to it.

If you're going to be handing out money for a service, you want to know that person providing the service knows what they're doing. Ultimately it's up to you to vet your team to the level that you feel comfortable with. I've worked with the same team now for about six or seven books, and at no point have I worried about them not doing what I'm paying them for. It's for peace of mind if nothing else.

So there we go, those are the tips I have for the process of choosing your own team when it comes to being an indie author. I know how lucky I am to have the editing team I do, and for all of us to get on so well. I wish you all the same in your endeavours!

Any questions? Lemme know in the comments!

Follow Joey here on her blog, or on Facebook or Tumblr to be kept up to date with the latest news regarding Joey and her books.

Friday 26 August 2022

Review of Elemental Trial by Sean Fletcher

 Becoming paranormal queen will be a trial by fire…

Riley’s found the elemental throne. Beat the Pack and Deathless at their own deadly game. Embraced her destiny as a paranormal queen.

That should have been the end of it, right?

Wrong. So, so wrong.

She’s barely sat down on her cold new throne before she discovers another plot to overthrow her rightful place and threaten the Outcasts. To prove herself (again) Riley has to survive an ancient trial through the Dying Lands—a lost paranormal world hidden amongst theirs, filled to the brim with magic and dangerous secrets.

Worse, Jasper is one of her opponents, forced to compete for the Deathless under the blood oath neither he nor Riley can break.

It’s official: fate hates her.

Along with her traitorous former-best friend, Riley will take on the trial to prove she’s the real deal, and not even a growing evil in the Dying Lands will stop her. Danger or not, heartbreak or not, she’ll do whatever it takes to keep Jasper and the Outcasts safe.

Even if it means giving up the things she loves most.

My Review: 5 STARS

I picked this up because I adored the first book and when I saw this one was out, I had to know what happened next. The explosive ending of book one prepared me for an even more thrilling ride. I ended up devouring this book in one sitting and couldn’t put it down. It was very much a case of just one more chapter, and then sadly, the book ended. I adore the world Fletcher has created and the way each character stands out with their own voice. It’s an amazing second book, and I am desperate to read the third. Highly, highly recommended to anyone who loves paranormal and urban fantasy!

Join Joey here on the blog on Fridays for interviews, reviews and guest bloggers. If you'd be interested in doing any of those, you can contact Joey here

Tuesday 23 August 2022


Lana is so sure she's doing the right thing, and she's solid in her belief Lock will come back to her...

BUY NOW: http://www.books2read.com/LON

[ID: A smoke plumes background, with the title LIGHTS ON at the top and Out now in ebook, paperback & audiobook just below the title. The except reads:

Lana rolled over and switched off her alarm, glancing at the space next to her. Empty. It was still strange to wake up and Lock not be there. Of course, that would change. Lock would realise what she’d given up, and she would come back. She had to.

At the top is Joey Paul and just below that the website www.joeypaulonline.com, in the bottom left corner is the Readers' Favorite Review seal, and in the bottom right corner is the logo for Bug Books. END ID]


Monday 22 August 2022

Spoonie Writer: When Life Throws A Curveball


As someone with multiple chronic conditions, I'm well-versed in what happens when everything that can go wrong with your health, actually does go wrong. Right now, at the time of writing this, I'm facing up a heavy month of work, and still in developmental edits, before moving in to line edits hopefully sometime in the next couple of weeks. All of that is because life threw me one hell of a curveball. I'm struggling to keep my head above water, and while it's the end of the month and I only have a few more bits and pieces to do, it still feels like a whole lot to manage!

So what do you do when you're a writer or author, and you're also chronically ill? How do you cope when things all get messed up, your health takes a nosedive and you know that you're not going to meet that deadline, self-imposed or not, and you're just really very much on the struggle bus? I wish I had some simple answers for you, I wish that I could tell you that it's just a case of doing x and then y and boom, all fixed. Spoilers, it doesn't work like that, it never has, and never will.

What I do when life hits me like that is I take stock of what absolutely has to happen. Like I know that blog posts and the like aren't going to magically write themselves, any more than my drafting is going to do the same. I know that I can't just cross my fingers and close my eyes and hope that edits won't be too bad, because if they're gonna need rewrites, we're back to that whole writing not doing it by magic. So I take stock, and I work out which of the fires I need to deal with right now.

For me, that's getting the edits done, and getting the book onto the next stage of the process, so everything else becomes a secondary task. If I have the energy to do more, great, if not, everything I have is poured into doing that thing that can not wait no matter how much I wish it could. If, like me, you're an indie author, some of that is on your shoulders. I chose to publish this book when I did, and I was the one who dropped the ball earlier in the process so I'm the one that's gotta suck it up and keep going.

Now, having said that, there comes a point where you just can't suck it up. You know me, I've always been a big proponent of breaks and taking the time you need to recharge, and now isn't any different. If at all possible, if you can push back a deadline, or you can move this or that and make it so you have a little wiggle room, then do it. My issue is that right now, the deadlines have been pushed as far as they can be. My editor has other commitments, I need to get the book finished in time for line edits and proof reading, and I have a deadline that I can't move. In those cases, when life throws you a curveball, you might find that you want to throw it back at life, but you can't always do that.

Stress happens to everyone, and it happens to all authors and writers, no matter which publishing path they've chosen. The problem is that when you're a spoonie, you're also already working on hard mode, so even the smallest thing can throw everything off. I don't know whether all will go smoothly, because I don't have a time machine, all I can do is keep my head down, keep working and hoping that I will come through this unscathed. As I've said before, something always goes wrong during the run up to release, and now isn't any different.

Any questions? Lemme know in the comments!

Follow Joey here on her blog, or on Facebook or Tumblr to be kept up to date with the latest news regarding Joey and her books.

Friday 19 August 2022

Review of Removeable Ally by Anne Sophie

How can she leave, when she doesn't understand?

After being captured by the government, enduring torture at their hands and being sent back to her home without any memories, Mara is trapped in the same life she escaped just months earlier.
Once she ends her relationship, and finds comfort in a blooming new friendship, she feels confident enough to share her own doubts about what happened in the months that are missing from her memory. Mara is rewarded with more knowledge about her own past, and the resistance, than she ever hoped to gain.

Emily remains with the resistance, unable to forget about Mara. She dives deep into her work and thereby pushed the resistance closer to the end goal: ready to fight against the government.

As Mara is forced to leave behind her family again, she has to decide what her future without them should look like and how she will be involved in the fight of the resistance. Unsure how the journey will unravel and where it will ultimately lead her, she has to trust her new friend and her own instincts.

Meanwhile, Emily fights to find her rightful place within the resistance. When she can’t wait any longer, and breaks the rules to get her way, she finds herself in a position she never thought she’d been in: rejected and lost. Emily has to work through her emotions and conflicts, to find a reason to fight.

My Review: 5 STARS

I picked this up on pre-order and read it all in one sitting on the day it was released. I adore Sophie’s way of setting the scene and taking us along on the journey with Mara, Emily and Flynn. The story had me hooked from the first word and I was cheering for all three of the main POV. I wanted to know whether Flynn and Emily would ever get to save Mara, and if any of them would get closer to bringing down the corrupt and dystopian government. I adored the story with all its twists and turns and that ending left me desperate for more. An amazing second book, and a brilliant addition to the trilogy. Highly recommended to those who love dystopian.

Join Joey here on the blog on Fridays for interviews, reviews and guest bloggers. If you'd be interested in doing any of those, you can contact Joey here

Tuesday 16 August 2022


Tara’s not sure if she should allow what’s being asked of her. So much has happened lately that it feels like a step too far…

BUY NOW: http://www.books2read.com/DTEE

[ID: A waterfall against rocks background, with the title DYING THOUGHTS - EIGHTH ENDING at the top and Out now in ebook, paperback & audiobook just below the title. The except reads:

“Do I have a choice?” I asked, softly.
“Of course you do,” he said.
“But it could mean that they, my bosses I mean, decide that the trauma is too much to expose a minor to.”
“So I don’t really have a choice, then do I? I mean, Clare doesn’t know half of it, she doesn’t know about my gift and as far as she’s aware, I just volunteer here with my time. How do you plan to ask her for a mental health report, if you can’t even tell her why?”

At the top is Joey Paul and just below that the website www.joeypaulonline.com, in the top right corner is the Readers' Favorite Review seal, and in the bottom right corner is the logo for Bug Books. END ID]


Monday 15 August 2022

The Trials Of A Crime Writer: Tropes I Love


One of the things I've really enjoyed about being a crime writer, is getting to explore tropes. You find that there are some you just love playing with time and time again. I thought that today it would be fun for me to give you some idea of those tropes that I love when it comes to dealing with crime itself. As you all know, I write a bunch of different genres, but usually, there's some crime or mystery element to the stories. I've always been a lover of crime fiction so it made sense for me to branch out into it when I first started writing. Of course, this will be with a young adult focus because I write young adult, but here we go!


I really do enjoy having a group of friends, never more than four or five, who like to solve mysteries. They usually always have different parts to play, and they all bring their own strengths to it. Whether that's a twosome like Tara and Kaolin, or group, like in Cramping Chronicles which isn't technically a mystery but does have those elements to it. I like a group of friends all working together, maybe even for different reasons, and solving this huge mystery. It's great fun, and it's also good to see just where the story will take you, it's one that I've written time and time again, and one that I see myself writing in the future too.


This might seem like a contradiction considering my first trope, but I also love having a character on their own, being the only one to pick up on the problems going on around them. Like a teenager thrown into the deep end with a murder, or a disappearance and being the only one who works out that something ain't right there. I adore getting to watch them grow, and learn, and pull out clues for this place and that, and be able to bring it together into a nice resolution.

Now if you've read any of my books, you'll know that I like writing some psychic elements to the story. Whether that's in straight up paranormal or whether it branches out into the urban fantasy, either way, I love there being some kind of unknown benefit to the protagonist. Like with Tara in the Dying Thoughts series, she had the ability to see the last moments of someone's life when she touches something that used to belong to them. It gave her an edge when it came to solving murders and the like. But at the same time, it wasn't the only way that she could approach things. Sometimes she found other clues and put things together, other times she was relying on help to get her the answers she needed. I just like there being some kind of otherworldly, or psychic part to the story.

This was a big one in Dying Thoughts, with DI Mike being the one that helped Tara along her journey. I adored writing his character, the offset between him and her father, and also just being there to believe Tara and help her where he could. I don't think I've done many others where there's some kind of mentor, but I do like to have this in the story somewhere.

I've put this as one rather than listing out what twists I like to write for two reasons. One, I don't wanna give away the endings of any of my books, and two, there are so many to mention that I would be here all day! I do love getting to lead the reader, and the characters down a certain path and then find out that something they didn't see coming is about to hit them around the head. I love writing twists and I adore the places that they'll take you.

So there we go, those are five of the tropes I love writing when it comes to crime and mystery. I know that some of them branch out into other genres as well, but that's how it rolls when you're a multiple genre author! If you've got some favourites, feel free to lemme know them in the comments!

Follow Joey here on her blog, or on Facebook or Tumblr to be kept up to date with the latest news regarding Joey and her books.

Friday 12 August 2022

Review of Hallowed by Billie Jade Kermack

Grace had accepted that dabbling in the occult, travelling back in time & banishing the spirit of a serial killer, had more than likely led to her death. What she hadn't anticipated was what she would bring back with her, when she returned to the world of the living.
Armed with a battered soul, her fondness for sarcasm & enough mental instability to keep a psychiatrist busy for a decade,
Grace must navigate her new life with Beau & try to harness the supernatural abilities that death had gifted her.
Plagued by visions & the revelations of her family's magical past, Grace must fight if she has any hope of staying alive long enough to live out her happily ever after with her one true love.


My Review: 5 STARS

After the end of book two, I couldn’t wait to dive into the third book in this series. I adore Kermack’s way of setting you down in the midst of her characters, with twists and turns that will leave you guessing. I adored the world she’d built and the characters within them. While there were some secrets that I was able to work out before the reveal, none of them ruined the story for me, and that ending just about made me cry with joy. Very much enjoyed this series and Kermack is an author who can only get better with time.

Join Joey here on the blog on Fridays for interviews, reviews and guest bloggers. If you'd be interested in doing any of those, you can contact Joey here

Tuesday 9 August 2022


The events are so carefully planned, that Lock knows something is wrong...

BUY NOW: http://www.books2read.com/LOUT

[ID: A sea floor blue background, with the title LIGHTS OFF at the top and Out now in ebook, paperback & audiobook just below the title. The except reads:

“Everything okay, Lock?” he asked, as I turned back to the screen.
“Yeah, I think so,” I mumbled as I ran over the names again and again, trying to remember who was missing.
“You look like something’s wrong,” Chris said, sitting down in the chair next to mine. “What’s up?”
“I dunno, I think I’m missing someone,” I said, glancing at him.
“How many names do you have?” he asked, pulling one of my screens so that he could check my work.
“Fourteen, but I can’t find the missing one anywhere in the system,” I said.

At the top is Joey Paul and just below that the website www.joeypaulonline.com, in the top left corner is the New Apple Award seal, in the top right left corner is the Readers' Favorite Review seal, and in the bottom right corner is the logo for Bug Books. END ID]


Monday 8 August 2022

How Things Have Changed in 17 Years Published


On August 10th 2005, I was first published with my debut, Blackout. I was 23, and eager to be out in the world as a published author. I made a lot of mistakes over my career, but even with how things went with that first publishing press, I don't regret publishing when I did and how I did. I get asked a lot whether things have changed in publishing since that time, and the answer is very much! I thought that today I would talk about the avenues that have opened up for indie authors, and how things have made my career possible.

One of the first things I need to make clear is that self-publishing back in 2005 was not the landscape it is now. There were no ebooks, there was no signs of that on the horizon, or at least there wasn't to me. I was 23, had five completed manuscripts under my belt, and I wanted to be out there in the world, I wanted to be published. I'd tried querying, had managed to get quite far with it, but it soon became clear that my health wasn't going to be stable enough to stick to the deadlines and the like that traditional publishing needed. I know there's some flexibility there, and maybe we could've worked something out. Nevertheless it didn't happen, and I ended up going the route I would advise everyone to avoid, and that's with a vanity press.

Yes, I paid to be published, and there was no other option for me at the time. My health was terrible, and I was in and out of hospital, and obviously getting sicker, and my biggest fear was that I wouldn't ever get to see my books out there. I went that route because I felt like I didn't have any other choice. Like I said above, I don't regret the choice in that I got my book published and it was amazing and perfect, and it all went really well, but I do regret going with a vanity press. They still call me, almost seventeen years later, wanting to sell me their newest gimmick.

I would advise no one take that route now, and people at the time told me not to as well. I saw it as my one chance to get a book out, because remember, there was no KDP or the like, and I really wanted to take it with both hands and just be happy to finally claim the title of published author. When KDP came along in 2010 or so, I jumped onto that as the chance to get the remainder of my books published, and I've not looked back since.

The landscape now, almost seventeen years later, is so much more accepting and open to indie authors, and for people from all walks of life to be able to publish. I don't know much about how traditional publishing has changed since then because I've never actually been traditionally published, so I can only speak to the indie path. With things like KDP and ebooks booming onto the scene, it made it so that people like me, could publish their works and make a career of being an author.

I have published almost twenty books, the majority in the time since 2010 onwards, and even the changes in that twelve year span are huge. You can now get audiobooks, you can publish paperbacks on a variety of different platforms, you can see your indie book in brick and mortar stores, you can do a whole array of many different things and there's signings and the like that wouldn't have been open to indie authors back then. People no longer look down their nose at you when you say you're indie or self-published. Yes, there's still some of the prejudice about it, but it's not the way it was when ebooks and the like first started coming onto the scene.

It's a lot more open, and yes, there are very much still those hurdles of paying for editors and cover designers and marketing and the like. But even that has become a lot easier for those of us who don't have a big publisher behind us. I am, as I've said many times before, still a small fish in the pond of indie authors. I do what I love, and while it's my full time job, it doesn't pay me a full time wage, but I keep going with what I do, and doing what I love because of the changes that have occurred over the past seventeen years.

23 year old Joey thought that she would only ever have one book out, that she would never be able to bring the Dying Thoughts series to life, to completion, that her stories would always be something that she, and friends, got to read. It's so very different now, and so mind blowing to know that I did it. I can look back and be proud of how far I've come, with all those many changes and be happy to have a bookshelf of almost twenty books, and with more coming, because I never stopped writing. I never stopped telling my stories, and to be here and know that I made it past that one book, really does warm my heart.

So if you're just starting out, whether that's on the indie or trad pub route, remember that you're going to do amazing things, and you will look back on this with pride and excitement. You did this, just like I did it. There's no feeling like being published, and I'm glad I got the chance to keep going.

Any questions? Lemme know in the comments!

Follow Joey here on her blog, or on Facebook or Tumblr to be kept up to date with the latest news regarding Joey and her books.

Friday 5 August 2022

Review of Kiss Kiss For Real by Charvet Clark

It's the 1991-92 school year. Kind, unassuming, academic princess Diana Prescott has recently moved in next-door to the hottest, most intimidating guy at her new school, Rico Alvarez. They couldn't seem to be more different, so when friendship blossoms between them it inevitably causes a multitude of drama. For the first time, Diana experiences bullying and sexual harassment -- discovering her own personal and ethical boundaries the hard way.

When it seems like things between her and Rico are ruined, a shocking incident involving Diana reunites them as friends and allies. But is that all they'll ever be?


My Review: 4.5 STARS

I picked this up because the cover was adorable and I felt like the story inside would be as well. I wasn’t disappointed, and adored the couple, their love story and all the twists and turns along the way. Diana and Rico are a match made together, and I was hooked from the first page, wanting to know more about whether or not they’d get together. It took me a while to remember that this was set in the 90’s, but otherwise I was very much along for the ride. I loved that ending, loved watching the characters grow and change, and bar a small snippet of plot that I really didn’t like, it was an amazingly good read and one I’d recommend.

Join Joey here on the blog on Fridays for interviews, reviews and guest bloggers. If you'd be interested in doing any of those, you can contact Joey here

Tuesday 2 August 2022


Tara is still struggling to cope with what happened to her, and everything seems to be getting worse...

BUY NOW: http://www.books2read.com/DTSD

[ID: A light blue background, with the title DYING THOUGHTS - SEVENTH DEATH at the top and Out now in ebook, paperback & audiobook just below the title. The except reads:

I closed my eyes and tried to quell my shaking hands, but it didn’t seem to help. I counted slowly as I breathed out, and then in again, trying to calm my fraught system. If there was one thing I wished I could change it was that I didn’t react like this to stupid things that shouldn’t have even been triggers in the first place. I’d given up trying to understand my traumatised brain, but it would’ve been nice if there were at least *some* clues as to what set me off this time.
“Tara, are you okay?” Nate asked.

At the top is Joey Paul and just below that the website www.joeypaulonline.com, in the bottom left corner is the Readers' Favorite Review seal, and in the bottom right corner is the logo for Bug Books. END ID]


Monday 1 August 2022

Working With A Line Editor - The After Process


I've talked before about working with editors (found here) but since I'm about to go into line edits for my upcoming book (you can pre-order here), I thought that I would talk to you today about what it's like to work with a line editor, what they do, and how to prepare yourself for that part of the professional edit. Now I know some authors who do the line edits along side the developmental editing, or they have the same person doing both. Personally I use different ones but that's just my way of doing things, and I don't think there's a problem with doing it either way.

I will say that I think it's important to get someone who's qualified and someone who's got that attention to detail that you need. I know of some authors who do a line edit as part of their self-edit, but I am just not that eagle eyed when it comes to editing so I leave all of that for my line editor to do. That said, my developmental editor will also something spot clunky sentences and the like, and we'll work through them then in the first stage of editing.

So what does a line editor do? They are quite simply looking at your manuscript and reading on a line by line basis. The clue is in the name. The developmental editor looks at the story on a larger scale while the line editor is honing down your prose. Making sure that your words flow, that they don't pull people out of the story and that the manuscript is a clean as it can be.

What's it like working with one? I've been very lucky in that my editing team is made up of people I've known for a very long time, and I've been working with them for a while as well. My best friend Kim is my developmental editor, and my best friend, B, is my line editor. Both of them have read my books time and time again, and without their diligent work, my books would not be in the good shape they're in now.

So because I know B and have known her for over twenty-five years, working with her has been a pleasure. I don't have to worry too much about her not doing the work in time, and I know that I can rely on her to give me the honest feedback. It means that we can talk things through in person, since she lives with me, and I can be sure that the feedback she's giving me is really what works best for the book as a whole.

The whole of the editing process, something that I have been vocal about, is that I'm not fond of it at all. I don't like having to go through it piece by piece and rework it all. It raises my anxiety levels and it's something that I get super stressed about. Saying all of that, the line editing stage is one that I don't mind all that much. I don't know if it's because I know there aren't likely to be huge changes needed, or just that I only have to focus on the one sentence at a time, but whatever the reason, I don't find myself getting as stressed out and anxious.

Working with a line editor is going to be different for everyone. While some people may enjoy it, others will find it nit picking and it'll set their teeth on edge.  It's part of the process that we all have to go through, and it's very much something that can be made easier by working with someone you connect with on some level. No one wants to work with someone who they're not fond of, or who they haven't connected with, who rubs them the wrong way. That's not what any stage of the editing process should be like, and if you're finding that it is, then maybe reconsider using the people you are.

For me, the whole process, line, developmental, and proof reading, are made easier because of the people I work with, and I know how lucky I am to have that. So don't be afraid to shop around and make sure you have the right fit for you.

Any questions? Lemme know in the comments!

Follow Joey here on her blog, or on Facebook or Tumblr to be kept up to date with the latest news regarding Joey and her books.