Teaser — Book #3

I’m also working on a zombie book. #4 in the Time of Zombies series; Zombies in the Grass.

The heroine is Willa Zara, a soldier in what is left of the U.S. Army and hero Danny Lopez, the Robin Hood of the Sierra Nevada foothills with a band of children he is saving from conscription into the army.

Chapter 1

Captain’s Log

Summer 0002 A.Z. (After Zombies)

Camp Natomas, California 

1300 hours. Last circuit of camp done for morning rounds. Three altercations stopped. One over water rations and two over fraternization with camp population. Pvt. Williams sent to Isolation bunker for instigating the incident. Captain Willa Zara

I threw my pen down, wincing as it broke, ink spattering across the table. At least it was blue, and not the red splattered over the sidewalk in the last fight this morning. The two privates had been arguing over the services of one of the civilian women. Right?! Why couldn’t they call it what it was—rape? The men were using the holding camp as their own personal brothel. Reports to the higher-ups were being ignored, or I feared, the behavior condoned to keep the men in the forced service.

“Captain Zara?” a voice whispered at my open door. “There are new arrivals at the gates.”

“Orders are to turn all refugees away, send them to Sacramento,” I replied, not bothering to turn around in my chair. I’d told Private Solares enough times for her to remember.

“This group is being escorted by our guys.”

Slamming my chair under the desk, I grabbed my cap and followed the teenaged soldier to the front gates. I skidded to a stop. These weren’t refugees. They were too well-fed and clean for one, even the small children. They looked like a road trip from before the virus. For the other, defiance shone in their eyes. They hadn’t been brought willingly to the camp. These were holdouts, defying the Governor’s Orders. Even in our far outpost we’d heard of the rebels on the river, encamped in an old hotel. They’d held out against the army for over eighteen months.

A tall man in army-issue camouflage stood in the front of the group. Anyone could get camo gear these days from army surplus and sporting goods stores, but this man wore his like a badge of honor. Along with the buzz-cut and ramrod stance, he screamed career army.

I pressed my arm to my side, two seconds away from saluting him. Until I got the lay of the land, so to speak, he was a prisoner of war.

I sighed deeply. We could use someone like him, but they were being brought in as hostiles. The delta region had been swept clean, down the river, and through every small slough, and only the microscopic town of Ryde had managed to fend off the radio orders for over a year to join the army or die. My heart fell to the pit of my stomach, bile roiling. Too much killing. Too much everything. We had to make him, and his group fall in line. With the lack of grown soldiers under my command, I didn’t have a choice. Our numbers stood two to one for forced versus enlisted from the before time. More disgruntled rumblings and we would fall apart on our own, without an incursion of the undead.

“Commander Jack Canida,” the man barked as a line formed to process them in.


If you’ve read the rest of the Time of Zombies series you will remember Commander Jack and his band of survivors. If not, get started with book #1, Love in the Time of Zombies.

 

Read an Ebook Week – March 3-9

This is Read An Ebook Week March 3-9, 2019. If you’ve never read an ebook before, this is an awesome time to start. If you love to read ebooks, you can get some AMAZING deals this week at Smashwords. Discount books, free books, series, any genre, and more!!

Just click the picture and check out all the great books available for great prices this week at Smashwords.


Jill James, romance writer

Teaser – book #2

So, the second book I’m working on is actually book #3 in the Ghost Releasers, Inc. series. It is called Ghostly Perceptions. The main characters are Rafe Elliott, a widower with a small son, Joey, being tormented by the ghosts of his murdered friends. Donna Collins is the main character in this story. She appears earlier in Ghostly Intentions and Ghostly Deceptions as a member of the Ghost Releasers, Inc. team. Her specialty is cameras to film the otherworldly and paranormal.

Chapter 1

Rafe Elliott didn’t believe in ghosts. It didn’t matter how much Joey cried in his room or how much it made his heart break to hear his son sobbing in his room. His hands clenched into fists on his thighs. He pressed to keep his feet firmly on the floor beside his bed. He wasn’t going into that room again tonight. The first time he’d done the open the closet, look under the bed routine. The next three times he’d opened the door and reassured his child the boogyman was not going to get him. The last time he’d yelled from his own bedroom that it was bedtime and he wasn’t going in there again.

His resolve lasted all of five seconds before the boy’s blood-curdling scream rebounded across the house and Rafe leapt off the bed and rushed out the doorway.

The sprint down the hallway seemed to take a lifetime as Joey’s screams ratcheted up another octave. Dogs howls echoed from the neighbor’s yards. Thumping came from his son’s room as if the bed were being moved across the floor.

He grasped the doorknob and hissed in pain at the intense cold of the metal froze his hand to the surface. With a scream of his own, Rafe ripped his hand from the knob, leaving a layer of skin behind.

Turning, he dove against the door with his shoulder. A crack sounded, but the door remained shut. Two more slams of his body and the door ripped open, bouncing off the wall as he stumbled into his son’s room.

Small for his age, Joey was a tiny figure in his bed as the covers whipped away from him and flew to the other side of the room. His hands held onto the headboard as if he would be flung across the room next. His son spotted him in the doorway, as his large blue eyes begged for help.

“Help me.”

The small whisper hit him like a sonic boom, piercing his heart. He was supposed to protect his son from everything, but how did you protect someone from what you couldn’t see or couldn’t understand. Like dealing with Elise’s cancer, he was out of his depth and clueless.

Ghostly Perceptions will be book #3 in the Ghost Releasers, Inc. series.

 

 

 


Jill James, romance writer

Teaser – book #1

I’m working on three books at the same time right now. Book #1 is actually book #2 in the Ghost Releasers, Inc. series, Ghostly Deceptions. The main characters are Andrea Martin-Stovell, the sister of the main character, Megan, in Ghostly Intentions and Luke Tremaine, the friend of the main character, Jack, in Ghostly Intentions.

Here is the snippet of Ghostly Deceptions:

Chapter One

Andrea Martin-Stovall didn’t feel like herself this morning. Hadn’t felt like herself for weeks. An unknown voice rattled around in her head. Something hummed through her veins and crawled over her skin. Her body felt crowded and not her own.

She stared at herself in the bathroom mirror and wondered when she had become a frumpy old hag. Her hair was long and heavy. With a smile, she picked up the scissors and started cutting her hair off in handfuls. Chunk after chunk fell to the countertop and the floor at her feet.

When she placed the scissors on the vanity top two feet of glossy dark hair lay in piles and her airy-light strands swung at chin length. For the first time since she’d been a child, straight bangs sat on her forehead above dark brows.

Her eyes twinkled as she gazed into the mirror. “There you are Andi,” she whispered as she slicked on bright red lipstick across her lips.

She slid on the red silk dress she’d found buried in the back of her closet. The fabric clung to every curve like it had been sewn on her. No panty lines. She laughed. No panties.

Sitting on a bench at the foot of her bed, she placed red high-heeled shoes on her feet and stood. Her full-length mirror showed a woman ready to party. Perfect.

Andrea grabbed a small clutch purse off the dresser, knocking a framed picture to the floor. Sparing it a glance, she wondered who the two little girls were in the photo behind the shattered glass.

Megan, my sister. A voice whimpered from the depths of her mind.

She shook her head and ignored it. Andi controlled this body. Andrea had her chance. Now it was time for Andi to live.

Again.

***

I’m enjoying writing Andrea. She is a control freak. Everything has to be perfect, in place, the right way. When she is possessed by a ghost from the age of jazz her entire life goes off the rails. Only the people of Ghost Releasers, Inc. can help her before Andi takes over and Andrea is no more.

Ghostly Intentions is the start of Ghost Releasers, Inc.


Jill James, romance writer

3 Meals Away

“No society is more than three meals away from anarchy.”  – author unknown

I’ve always used this quote as the basis of my zompoc romance novels. The speed that society would deteriorate if it fell apart is light speed. A few missed meals and the collapse of government and the masses would revolt. It would be every man/woman/child for themselves.

I enjoy movies and books that show it wouldn’t take much to bring us to “survival of the fittest.” I think this is why I love zombie shows and movies. When it comes down to it, I don’t need to outrun the zombie, I just need to outrun the guy next to me. We all have the barbarian inside of us, it just takes the right situation to bring it out.

At the end of the world as we know it, I’m protecting myself, my family, and my home. Because I’m damned sure, everyone else is doing the same.

Walk with the dead, Jill James

 

No Candy Hearts

I was shocked to see that there will be no candy conversation hearts this year since the company went out of business or sold to someone else (not 100% sure which). Those little hearts were the joy of my childhood. Every Valentine’s Day in the classroom you knew you would get at least one or two of those little boxes along with the perforated, cardboard cards. It wasn’t that they tasted so great, they are actually kind of chalky. They aren’t chocolate after all. But, it was like a sensory memory of joy and friendship, along with the sweet messages imprinted on their colorful surfaces.

Since we are trying so hard to lose weight this year, there will be no luxurious red boxes of chocolates, but I’ll hold on to that joyful memory of candy hearts from a friend.

Happy Valentine’s Day, Jill James

Time of Zombies series

I blogged on Tuesday that I’m working on the paranormal ghost series. I’m also working on the next book in the Time of Zombies series.

Zombies in the Grass will hopefully be out before summer.

It is Willa and Danny’s story. Willa Zara is in what is left of the U.S. army outside Sacramento, California. The army is the only life she knows and following orders is what she does. Danny Lopez is the Robin Hood of the foothills, stealing from the army base to feed his ragtag band of children.

When Willa learns what the army is really doing at the base she will have to turn to Danny and his gang to save innocent children wanted for science experiments. With her army skills and Danny’s ability to disappear they just might escape a danger far greater than zombies in the grass.

Book 1 – Love in the Time of Zombies
Book 2 – The Zombie Hunter’s Wife
Book 3 – A Time to Kill Zombies
Book 4 – Zombies in the Grass ~ coming soon.


Jill James, romance writer

Work In Progress

Finally back to writing after the holidays. I’m working on books 2 and 3 of the Ghost Releasers, Inc. series. Book 1 is Ghostly Intentions. Book 2 will be Ghostly Deceptions. Book 3 will be Ghostly Perceptions. Book 2 has Andrea, Megan’s sister from book 1 and Luke, Jack’s business partner from book 1. Book 3 has Donna, who works with Jack and Luke and a new guy, Rafe and his son Joey.

 

Book 2 is Andrea and Luke’s story. Ghostly Deceptions is a ghost possession story. After her sister’s torment with a ghostly entity, Andrea is more unwilling than before to believe in ghosts and such until she starts having hours and days of time she can’t remember. Times when someone or something else is in charge of her body and her mind. Unwilling to turn to her sister and the head of Ghost Releasers, Inc. she is on her own until Luke realizes something isn’t right with Andrea.

Book 3 is Donna and Rafe’s story. Ghostly Perceptions is about a little boy, a poltergeist, and a father unwilling to accept his son’s stories of ghostly happenings. When he is confronted with the unimaginable he will turn to his neighbor Donna who works with the team at Ghost Releasers, Inc.

Working on getting both books out before the middle of the year. Fingers crossed for maybe April and May. We shall see.


Jill James, romance writer

Plotter or Pantser

The age old question for writers. Do you plot? Or do you pants? Which is basically write into the mist.

I’m a plotter. I’m also a linear writer. I start with Chapter 1 and finish with The End. I don’t write chapters or scenes out of order. I don’t write a piece of dialogue because it just comes to me. I know how the story starts with the characters in place. I know some of the things that will happen to them on the journey. I know how it will all wrap up at the end.

Still, surprises do happen. Characters I never dreamed of make an appearance. Things will happen that make me wonder if the end will happen how I think it will. Ah, the joys of being a writer.

My best tool for plotting is posterboard, Post-Its, and a brainstorming buddy.

I love seeing the colors in my office. Blue for hero POV, Green for heroine’s POV, Purple for antagonist POV, Yellow for locations or details of scene, and Hot Pink for passion moments.

This plotting board was for Dangerous Shift, a shapeshifter paranormal romance that is still one of my favorite books I’ve written.


Jill James, romance writer

If it doesn’t belong to you…

don’t take it. I need to vent, people. At midnight I was on the phone to my bank to cancel a transaction I didn’t do and an hour on hold the next morning to get Barnes & Noble to realize I didn’t order a bunch of movies. Then I spent the day taking my debit card off websites and changing passwords everywhere. Grrrrr! Arghhhh! Now I’ll have to add a new debit card when it arrives and verify to B&N before I can order anything else. Maybe they should have made the POS verify who he was?!!!

My dad told me “if it isn’t yours, don’t pick it up.” It is such an easy concept, everyone should try it. If it’s not yours, don’t take it.

I’ve worked hard for what I have in life, you can’t have it. Simple. Try it sometime.


Jill James, romance writer

Little Moments

This year I want to enjoy the little moments of life. The beauty of the outdoors, the relationships in my life, and getting my body in shape to enjoy the moments of life for a long time to come.

Watching the snow fall for hours as it covered the patio and walls and fences was breath-taking. At midnight it was as bright as a coming twilight with the moonlight glimmering on the white, white snow. We just laid in bed and gazed out the glass door and it was mesmerizing.

Enjoy the moments, Jill

 

2019 – Happy New Year

For years I would do New Year’s Resolution. About February they were dust in the wind. Then my friend gave me a Wishing Pot. Each New Year’s Eve I sit down and open it up and read what my wishes were for the year. Some come true, some don’t, and some happened that weren’t in the Wishing Pot at all.

wish pot

This past New Year’s Eve I got my wish pot off the shelf and opened it up. Imagine my disappointment to find no wishes inside. The wish pot had still been packed away last New Year’s Eve after the move to our new house and it was months later that my office was finally in order and the little pot on a shelf.

 

 

But, now it has new wishes for this coming year. 1 writing-related, 1 health-related, and 1 personal. It is funny how I won’t think about those wishes until it is time to check them next New Year’s Eve. Happy wishes to everyone for 2019 to be all you want and need it to be.

What is your wish for 2019?


Jill James, romance writer

Goodbye 2018, Hello 2019

Happy New Year 2019

Most times people take this time of year to kick the past year to the curb, glad to see it go. They are looking forward to a bright, shiny new year. Although, I will be glad to greet a new year, 2018 was very good to me. I published 3 books, I tried something new ( Kindle Scout), and best of all, celebrated my first year in my brand-new home.

Look back with fondness and greet the new year with love and a sense of adventure.

Happy New Year to all, Jill James

After Christmas Events

Now that Christmas is out of the way, I have a few things going on. Hope you will check them out.

Smashwords End of Year Sale

Again, I’m taking part in Smashwords Annual Sale. Go to Smashwords and check out all of the great books for bargain prices and even FREE! I have Love in the Time of Zombies set at FREE and Dangerous Shift at 75% off.


Twixtmas Takeover

This takes place on the Love in a Small Town Facebook page from December 26th to December 31st. Hence, betwixt Christmas and New Year’s we will be partying on the FB page with games, and prizes, and fun. I’ll be there on December 30th at 6 pm Eastern time talking about my Lake Willowbee Series and asking questions and giving out prizes. Join us at Love in a Small Town on FB.

 

 


Also, Book 1 in the Time of Zombies series, Love in the Time of Zombies, is on sale until the new year. I’m working on Book 4 to release early in 2019, so get caught up in the zombie apocalypse now for just 99¢ for Book 1.

AMAZON

 


Hope everyone had a wonderful holidays and is looking forward to 2019!!

Jill James, romance writer

Our Anniversary–for the house

In our family we celebrate our house anniversary–the day we moved into our house. In our old house, it was St. Patrick’s Day, March 17th. So, no corned beef and cabbage for this Irish family, we had a nice steak dinner.

Today is the first anniversary of our new, built just for us, house. So we are having a nice steak dinner, red potatoes, salad, rolls, and wine to toast our first year here in Reno. Can not believe a whole year has passed since we got the keys and moved from our apartment with several inches of snow on the ground and soooooo cold.

Happy Anniversary to our home.


Do you celebrate in offbeat ways in your family?


Jill James, romance writer

Decisions, decisions.

A writer’s world is full of decisions. Titles, characters, plots, plotting or pantsing, 3rd person POV or 1st. My dilemma at the moment is what to work on next.

I have three W.I.P.s (Works In Progress) at the moment. Do I add to the Time of Zombies series with book 4 (Willa and Danny’s story) or add to Ghost Releasers, Inc. with books 2 and 3? (Andrea and Luke/Donna and Rafe) I’m loving each of these stories and excited to add to each series. But I can’t seem to settle down and just write.

I had really thought to work more on them during Nanowrimo in November and into December here with all the presents shopped and wrapped and decorations done, but it just isn’t happening. I think I will write every December and every December I don’t. So the plans for the new year will be 3 books and several novellas.

Happy writing and reading, Jill.

Christmas ornaments

I love decorating the Christmas tree each year. Last year we were in an apartment getting ready to move into our new house so we didn’t decorate at all. We were in a new house with almost no furniture and didn’t have our decorations(in storage). We drove to see family and didn’t stay home for Christmas Eve and Day.

This year we got out everything we own for the holidays. It was fun to see the family ornaments after missing a year. The little ones of popsicle sticks and foam the kids and grandkid made over the years. The old ones passed down from generation to generation. The ones that represent a person or a place we’ve been. And the new ones we get each year to make the year.

My mother-in-law gets us a new one each year too. They are beautiful crystal and silver and bright. This is this year’s one!

Do the ornaments on your tree have special stories too?

 


Jill James, romance writer