Monster

Monster

Dear David,

Why did you do this to me?
You left me broken and incomplete and I'll never be the same. You took the one thing that matters most, a legacy. Because of you, I will never know the feeling of a baby pressed against my skin, knowing that I created life. I will never watch the child with my blue eyes playing in the yard. I will never know what it's like to feel my unborn baby move inside my womb.

Because of you, I will never be the mother I could be. You were supposed to love me, protect me, but you were the monster. I watch as the women around me celebrate the lives growing inside of them, and I'm jealous. I can't truly be hapoy for them because of you. How could someone do this to their flesh and blood?

But, I forgive you. I can't hold this hate in my heart anymore. Besides, Karma is a bitch and you'll get yours.

Love,
Hollie

Home

Home

I wander the dark streets, cold and alone. The shadows follow me, growing darker with every step. My mind races, images flash across my eyes. A clattering noise comes from the right. I jump. I hear yelling and the sound of skin slapping against skin.

An Author's Nightmare

As a writer, I have many nightmares, but I think the biggest thing I struggle with is validation with my peers. I'm not writing this as a sob story or for attention, just sharing some of my thoughts and ways I've been able to deal with my publishing anxiety.

After Avrin and I published our novella, Coup De Grăce, sales were amazing. We sold 9 copies within the first few days, but then, nothing. Our sales have literally come to a standstill and even with Coup De Grăce on Kindle Unlimited, we still don't even have page reads.

Here are some of the thoughts running through my head:
1. Is Coup De Grăce a terrible novella? Do people hate It?
2. Have I done everything in my power to promote it?
3. Do I really just not have any friends who are willing to read my work?

I think the biggest kicker, and I already knew this, so I shouldn't be surprised, but I really thought with my visibility on social media, we would sell more copies. Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying this to be conceited, but there have been a number of friends books from social media that I have purchased and read, just because they were my friends. But, I get it, the writing community on Twitter is not to sell books, it's to connect with other authors, so I shouldn't be surprised.

I found myself hovering over the sales page and the reviews for Coup De Grăce, literally checking multiple times a day, but I can't be a helicopter author anymore. So, if you find yourself in my situation, here are a few things that I'm doing to keep myself motivated and distracted.

1. I recently read that once you publish something, you need to prepare to publish again within 18 months, so I have strapped on my seatbelt and I'm on the fast track to getting my next novel ready.
2. I've let my anxiety about Coup De Grăce go. I know that we wrote a good novella, and I'm refusing to let anyone diminish that. I never expected to get rich or become a best seller after publishing one work, so why am I setting my standards so high?
3. I'm going to focus on building my author platform and get everyone excited about my next novel. If you want to be a successful author, people need to know who you are. So I'm putting myself out there. I will try to participate in more writing and author events.
4. I have really dove into getting some of my short stories published. In the past 2 weeks, I have submitted 2 stories for AFOW and 1 to Reedsy.com. If I can get my name out there and get people to read my other stories, maybe they will be more interested in reading Coup De Grăce.

So, if you find yourself in my situation, just take a deep breath, forget your KDP login for a few weeks, and refocus yourself on your writing. Don't let lack of sales get you down and don't let bad reviews diminish your work. You've accomplished something just by finishing and publishing a novel. You are an author now. Live that moment and don't let anyone take it away from you.

Coup De Grace Update

If you didn't already know, Coup De Grăce released on Sunday and sales are already blowing me away.

I couldn't be happier to have such a supportive group of friends and family. This is the most amazing experience of my life. We worked so hard putting this novella together, and to see it being purchased by readers is just awesome. I'm seriously at a loss for words right now.

Just to say thank you to all you guys, I put together a giveaway. Check out how you could win a $10 Amazon gift card and a surprise gift from me.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

If you are an author struggling with publication and getting your words out there, self-publishing is truly a blessing. I know that I probably won't say that a few weeks from now, when sales are at a standstill, but honestly, I couldn't be happier with the out-poring of support from all of you.

I hope this is just the beginning of my writing and publishing journey. I do have a few other projects in the works, including my novel, Deja Vu, the story of how Hayden and Andy's relationship started. And I'm also working on a New Adult novel that I haven't titled yet, featuring Aidan, the orphan with superpowers. I can't wait to share more of my work with all of you.

Be on the lookout for more info from me and my amazing co-writer, Avrin Kelly.

#MCchat

Sunday April 8th from 5PM-10PM EST is the first ever #MCchat. The event will be hosted by Avrin Kelly, Manuel Arbanassi and me. Basically, the event is set up like a big party and our main characters will be tending bar. In preparation for the event, Manuel put together a short story to describe the setting, The Heart's Delight.
So bring along your main character and settle in for a fun night.

Coup De Grăce

In case you missed my announcement on Twitter, Avrin Kelly and I will be releasing a novella at the end of April. We are super excited about the project and can't wait to share it with y'all.


First of all, I would like to share with you all how exciting and rewarding this experience has been. Not only am I publishing something I'm proud of, I'm hoping that you all will be proud of my hard work too. Without the support of my amazing friends and family, this novel would've never happened. 

Avrin Kelly was a big part of this novel too. Without her character and her writing, this novel wouldn't even exist. The project started as just a short story we were going to write together, but then our characters took over and before we knew it, we had written a novella.

We will be looking for ARC readers that would be interested in reading and leaving reviews on Amazon as well as Goodreads.

Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds

Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds
Alexis Hunter

The package was heavy. He could have carried it in his pack, but soon enough he knew that he would be laying it down, and his heart would feel the ache of his empty arms. Instead, he trudged onward. The crags and ledges of the mountains rose on either side of him, highlighted by the glitter of ice and a dusting of snow, so tall they almost blot out the stars.


Frozen Light

Frozen Light

We were never meant to exist.  

Creatures of ice and snow living with stolen breath. The light of a star pulsing in our chests, casting shadows and light along the ice caves we called home.  

An accident of circumstance created us, one over which we had no control. Yet, we paid for it every year with a life. Our sacrifice was demanded, expected, and we dared not refuse it.  

No one denied the Moon King. 

This year, I was the payment.  


The Gold Star

The Gold Star

The gold star on my chest identifies me as different. It tells all the people around me that I'm tainted, unwanted, and something to be feared. Maybe I should use that power, but instead I find myself trapped, hovering between who I want to be and who they tell me I am.



The war ravaged city passes by the windows of the train. I'm afraid and don't know what is going to happen to me, but I've heard the stories, I know what happens when they show up to take people like me away. I'm trying to stay strong, if not for me, for my family.

My mother and father are huddled in the corner of the train car, holding my baby sister. Their faces look scared as they hold on to one another. There has to be something I can do. I sit in the middle of the floor and hug my knees to my chest. I rest my chin on my knees and try not to let the fear overcome me.

I have to stay strong.

Maligne Canyon: A Blank Page Short Story Challenge Submission

The first Blank Page Short Story Challenge just ended and the top 3 stories have been chosen. I decided to share one of my favorite stories that didn't make it into the top 3 with you. Check out the top 3 stories and vote for your favorite here

If you've never heard of The Blank Page Short Story Challenge, it's a short story challenge started by the amazing and talented Simon Thurtle. Each month we post a prompt and give participants a whole month to write a short story. After the deadline, Avrin Kelly, RQ Woodward, and me, read all of the stories and pick the top 3. Then it's left up to the public to decide the winner. 

You can follow The Blank Page Short Story Challenge on Twitter. And be sure to look for the next short story prompt on Match 19th. I'm looking forward to reading all the submissions.

Here's the prompt that inspired this short story:


Shoes

Shoes


My bare feet slap against the cold asphalt. The streets are lined with slowly melting snow, turned brown by the passing cars. Mom says we can't afford shoes anymore. I don't really know what a depression is, but the way my parents keep talking about it, it must be bad. Dad hasn't been to work in weeks and mom has been sewing a lot more clothes in our small living room lately. My stomach feels hollow, I can't remember the last time we had a full dinner.

I'm supposed to be picking up my younger sister from school, but the trip is almost unbearable. I rub my cold hands up and down my arms, trying to warm the uncovered pale skin. What I would give for a,wool coat, or even an extra shirt right now. The small school house comes into my vision in the distance and I immediately start to run. It feels like my ice cold skin will surely crack against the frozen road.

#WIPchatBuddies


Looking for a Beta-Reader or Critique Partner?

Come join us on Monday, May 7th all day long and find your perfect Beta-Reader or CP.

First things first. Let's talk about the differences between a beta reader and critique partner. By definition, a beta reader is really just a reader who reads before you publish. You should not be seeking beta readers unless you have a complete and polished manuscript. A beta reader also will only make big picture suggestions.

A critique partner is someone who will go through your work, scouring the pages for mistakes and issues. Normally, I don't look for critique partners until I've finished a second draft, but I've heard of people doing it on their first drafts. A CP will offer very detailed feedback and might even spot and grammar/spelling issues. Most of the time a CP will be a swap. You will critique their work, while they critique your work.

Every writer needs critiques and beta-readers. I personally swear by critiques to improve my writing. So I will be hosting an event to help each of you find a CP or beta reader. Here are some things to include in your Tweet on Monday.

Frankenwife


The sound of an alarm rang. It was a small, brightly lit room, filled with whirring machines. A man stood in the middle of the room, his eyes gleaming with excitement. His hair mussed and his long, white lab coat covered in coffee stains. He had been working non-stop for the last five months in a desperate attempt to return his life to what it used to be. 

“This is it.” He stepped towards the long tube like machine in front of him and pressed his palm to the sensor. The doors whooshed open, the air sending his mussed hair every which way.

The Auction








“Damn! That bastard got me again.” Logan shouted. He clicked the mouse, raising the bid.

“How about that, you fucker?” Logan smiled to himself and reached for the bowl sitting next to the computer. He leaned back in his chair and crammed a handful of the buttery popcorn into his mouth. His eyes never left the screen. There were only five more minutes in the auction and he would win this one. He was packed and ready, he had to win. A high-pitched sound came from the tiny speakers hidden behind the computer. Red writing flashed across the screen.

A Trip Home

This story was inspired by another short story I recently wrote, Home. Check out the original piece here

A Trip Home

My name is William Stone. Also known as Willy B, roughest, toughest dope dealer in town. No one fucked with Willy B, unless they had a death wish.

Now, I'm stuck in this cell and I don't know how to get out. Let me tell you what happened.

The Midnight Vixen

This week, I'm sharing a short story written by Avrin Kelly. It's inspired by my short story, Home, which can be found here, if you haven't checked it out.
I'm honored to present:
The Midnight Vixen




I have a bit of a strange hobby: I like to run around my city at night and fight crime. You know, give those assholes who like to bother unsuspecting women in dark corners a run for their money.
Surprise them, right when they think they've won.
I used to be a gymnast, and that made it a little easier for me to learn parkour. It's the best way to get around in a tight spot.
Think outside the box; go under or over an obstacle. Really keep them guessing at what I might do next.

Home

My newest short story, Home, is up and ready for you all to read. This is my favorite short story I've written this year. I hope you like it as much as I do. You can find it on Rebecca Yelland's blog. Click here to check it out.

The Amazing Twitter Community

I'm no expert when it comes to Twitter, and I learn new things everyday. I started my Twitter experience in September of 2017 and I now have around 5,000 followers. Most of them are probably bots, but I have met some amazing people. The writing community on Twitter is something I've never experienced before. You will find some of the most supportive and helpful people here. Not only is there an amazing writing community, there's a community for just about everyone here.

So how do you get started:

Short Story Tips with Avrin and Hollie

With the impending start of The Blank Page Challenge and the ongoing #52weeks52stories challenge, Avrin Kelly and I decided we would share some tips and tricks for writing awesome short stories.

First of all, let me introduce Avrin Kelly. Avrin and I met last year through a tweet chat I host, (#WIPchat), in late 2017. After reading some of her amazing work, Twine in particular, I decided we had to be friends. She is an amazing writer and her stories will leave you with nightmares. (I'm not kidding) Avrin spends most of her time writing and running her blog, Wicked Shorts, where you can find more of her amazing stories. If you haven't followed Avrin yet, do so right this minute.

Today is Not the Day

My newest short story, Today is Not the Day, can be found on the lovely Avrin Kelly's blog. Check it out here.




via GIPHY

Just a Dream

Just a Dream
1/17/2018
Hollie Hausenfluck

The sun shines bright in the sky. The wind blows in her face. She looks to her left. Damon looks back at her and her heart melts. She remembers all the reasons they fell for each other: his dirty blonde hair, twinkling blue eyes, and the small scar above his lip. She smiles at him and he returns the smile, stretching the tiny scar flat. He twists his fingers into hers.

“I love you, Anna.”

“I love you too, Damon.”

A sound wakes her from the moment. Tires screeching on the road and the sound of metal crunching. An arm reaches out in front of her, pushing her back into the seat. Her head slams back into the headrest and her eyes close.

Monster

Monster Dear David, Why did you do this to me? You left me broken and incomplete and I'll never be the same. You took the one...