Abs Writes A Lot

My name's Abs… and I write a lot.

Good riddance, 2016! Bring it, 2017…

I think it’s no secret that 2016 has been a sucky year. Not only has it taken some of the most iconic, legendary performers of my lifetime (Carrie Fisher, Prince, David Bowie, George Michael, Alan Rickman, Debbie Reynolds, the list unfortunately goes on and on…), it’s also been a devastating year in my personal life.

It started on Jan. 2, when my mom was rushed to the hospital with heart problems, which just happened again right before Christmas. That very same day, my boyfriend of more than a year (who I thought I was going to marry) dumped me. Over Facebook Messenger. Then, he blocked me, and all my friends and family so he wouldn’t have to face all the people who wanted to kick his ass for hurting me. At the same time, all of our bills were behind and we were facing the thought of having to move in with our parents. I felt like I had failed at everything–I had no job, my car was in danger of being repossessed, we were losing our beautiful home, and now I had no boyfriend and my mom’s health was in danger. So I had a breakdown of sorts. After a week in the hospital, I was much better, but it took that to bring me back from the brink. I was pretty far gone.

2016 continued to suck a lot after that. But no one wants to read about that, do they? You’ve all had your own suckiness to overcome this year. I have been living with my parents again since March 2016, and good lord, that has been trying. We’re still here, and trying our best to save up for our own place. Kind of difficult with a retail job, but I’m trying to stay positive.

A lot of good things happened in 2016, too. One major thing: I gave my heart to Jesus in the middle of Hurricane Matthew. I was sick and tired of the depression and anxiety running my life, and I decided to (try to) give control to a more reliable power. That giving up control has definitely been the biggest hurdle for me to overcome. Now, don’t think for a second that I’ve become some holier-than-thou “Christian.” I am still me. I swear on occasion, though admittedly not as much. I am still pro-choice, pro-LGBT rights, pro-women’s rights and anti-Republican right wing “conservatives.” It IS possible!! That was the thing that had been holding me back from going to church and being closer to God. The world wants you to think you have to believe certain things to truly be a Christian. You don’t. I’ve heard some “Christians” say they’re celebrating Hanukkah this year, “because that’s what Jesus would do.”

Hmmm. I guess Jesus would also discriminate against LGBT people, and call women who need abortions murderers. I think we all know, deep down, Jesus would not do those things, but it’s OK when you’re a conservative “Christian”! Jesus would also leave the poor to fend for themselves, and never enact any programs to help them. NOT. But that’s a whole ‘nother blog topic.

My reasons for writing this are not to complain about 2016, but to look forward to 2017. I have to believe this will be the year when the good things finally start happening. I know God has a plan for me, and with all the trials I’ve been through this year, I’m hoping his plan includes a lucrative book deal and a new house. 😉 Those are my goals. I’m back out in the querying world, which isn’t fun, but I truly believe what I have written in 2016 is my best work ever, and if agents/editors don’t jump on board, well … it’s their loss. There has to be someone out there, and I’m working on my positivity and confidence. If the “traditional” route doesn’t work, I’m going to have to self-publish and learn how to promote myself and my work, which is another of my biggest challenges.

So, stay tuned to this blog. Another of my goals is to build my presence in the writing community. I need to write more blogs, keep myself out there and hope for the best.

As I write this, “Fight Song” by Rachel Platten comes on. It shall be my theme song for 2017. I am fighting for me, for God, for what’s right in this world. Join me in the positivity….

“Like a small boat on the ocean, sending big waves into motion, like how a single word can make a heart open …. I might only have one match, but I can make an explosion.” 

😀

 

 

 

 

 

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It’s almost time!!!!

Wow, the past few months have FLOWN by. It seems like I posted my blog announcing that I was re-releasing my debut novel, GOING HOME AGAIN, just a week or two ago, but it’s been two months! And at that time, October 25 seemed like a long ways away. It’s almost here though, and I’ve been working hard on getting it ready to self-publish.

(ICYMI: My publisher reverted the rights back to me earlier this year, and I was encouraged by people in the business to re-release it as a self-published novel and to add bonus content, so that is what I have done! 🙂 )

Finally, and in just the nick of time, I have a beautiful new cover (which I designed myself! ERMAGHAD) and am excited to share it with you all. I LOVE IT (if I do say so myself)!!!

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The book will be published on TUESDAY, and bear with me as I learn to do this all by myself. I hope that those who have read it will want to read it again, and those who haven’t will choose this time to decide to give it a go!

I am doing this entirely on my own this time … word of mouth would be greatly appreciated! 😉

Here’s the blurb:

For Alyssa Jones, Michael Day was always the untouchable guy in high school. Twenty years later, when the now-famous pop star returns home to coastal North Carolina for a sabbatical from his failing marriage, Alyssa gets the chance to interview him for her magazine—and perhaps the chance to live out her teenage dreams.

When the two meet, the chemistry between them ignites and causes problems for Alyssa that go beyond testing her journalistic integrity. Is she really the type of woman to get involved with a married man, no matter how strong the attraction? Mike, on the other hand, has been going through the safe marriage motions for so long, this former shy girl he never noticed rattles his world like an earthquake. To top it off, Mike’s current wife isn’t nearly as willing as he is to let go of their marriage.

Is Alyssa really willing to risk it all for the love of her teenage life?

 

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Update: I’m still here…

Well, it’s been quite a year so far. Many of you probably don’t know, I started out the year by getting dumped (via Facebook messenger), my mom being in the hospital with a heart condition, losing my house, my car and, to be candid, my mind. I spent a week being treated in the hospital for severe depression. I was ashamed to admit that for a while, but there shouldn’t be any shame in admitting you need help. I’m in therapy now, and on medications, and I still have dark days, but I’m determined to make it through.

More recently, another terrible thing happened that has made 2016 The Worst Year Ever. I got dumped again–this time by my publisher.

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I’m not going to badmouth them or even name names, because most people know who they are anyway. But, maybe it was a blessing in disguise. I can reinvent myself as a self-published writer. I can have more control over my own writing career. I can design my own covers. I can receive all the royalties without paying a percentage to someone for marketing and other services that simply aren’t being provided. I can promote myself, and have only myself to blame if I fail.

But I’m just going to go out on a limb and say I won’t fail. If this year has taught me anything, it’s that I can persevere. I’m still here for a reason, and I’ve always felt that reason is to write.

So, here’s my latest news:

I’m going to re-release my two already-published novels, GOING HOME AGAIN and AFTER THE FALL, with brand new content, new covers and a new attitude. So, if you read my books before, get ready for more Alyssa and Michael, and more Tina and Josh. If you haven’t read them before, now is your chance. 🙂

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I plan to re-release GOING HOME AGAIN on October 25, with AFTER THE FALL coming December 20 (just in time for Christmas)! I hope that you all will look forward to reading about these characters I’ve grown to love so much and who mean so much to me, and that you’ll love them as much as I do.

I’m also still writing romantic fiction, and the next novels will be even better, I promise! I’m still working on my next draft, though, so I can’t share a lot of details. Just be prepared for awesomeness, okay?

At least I hope it’s awesome. Like every writer, I of course worry that I suck. But I’m trying to be positive here. 😉

In any case, stay tuned and I hope I can share more exciting news soon. And I hope that someone will care. Haha.

Thank you all for your support. Love ya!!!

capt-america

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Swallowing my pride

As most of you know, I quit my job as a newspaper editor on Oct. 13. I thought, for some unknown reason, that I could find a better job with the quickness and if not, I could make a living with the freelance proofreading/editing I was doing. Now a month and four days later … not so much.

Not only has my freelance work pretty much dried up, I’ve only done two interviews (out of the 33 jobs I’ve applied for over the past month). One of those, I did not get; the other, I would’ve had to pay start-up/training costs that I could not afford. As it stands right now, I have $0 in the bank, maybe a dollar worth of quarters in my wallet, and a ton of overdue bills. And as it stands right now, I’m doing my best not to freak out.

Luckily, I have my twin sister/roommate/BFF to help out. She paid the rent and got a few groceries with her part-time paycheck, but we have no clue how we will pay for the car payment and insurance, cell bill (which is astronomical… thanks, AT&T), electricity, water/sewer/garbage, cable, Internet, and so on. There’s also the fact that Adeline is in the local theatre’s production of “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever,” which starts Dec. 10. Will we even be able to afford tickets? :-\ I don’t know right now.

I’m really feeling like I made a huge mistake by quitting, but they won’t take me back now, and truthfully, I don’t want to go back. I had all these fantasies of finding some kick-ass job and the newspaper would be regretting that they didn’t fight to keep me. Of course, that would mean they actually appreciated all my hard work as an employee, which they did not.

So, after a month of applying for jobs that deal with my degree and getting exactly zero job offers, I swallowed my pride today and applied for a job in retail. It feels kind of like an insult, given that I have nearly 20 years of journalism experience, but hey, no one is hiring me, and we need more income, plain and simple.

I also just applied for Medicaid and food stamps. Don’t know if I will be approved for either. My unemployment claim sits in Raleigh with an “issue” that is keeping me from getting any payments.

My point in writing this is not for pity or charity, but because I want others to see how easily and quickly things can go wrong. All I know to do is keep praying that someone will hire me, or that my books will suddenly become bestsellers or I’ll win the lottery (though I can’t really afford lottery tickets!) or something that will make things more bearable.

I spend most of my days worrying and that is no way to live, but it’s me, unfortunately. Depression keeps telling me this will never end, that we’re going to end up moving back in with our parents, who can’t really afford to help us either. I’m trying to keep my hopeful side alive, but so far, that’s proving to be a major challenge.

I just want to be able to make enough money to live on and be able to one day pay off the massive debts I owe. I wish that didn’t feel like so much to ask. Most days, I feel like I’m drowning and suffocating in worry and debt.

If you pray, please pray for me and my little family. If not, send positive vibes. I need all the help I can get!!!

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Guts and glory or brainless and broke?

A week ago, I made a snap decision that changed my life for the foreseeable future. I quit my job. I literally walked out and said (in not so many words) “take this job and shove it!”

In the past seven days, I’ve gone back and forth between thinking it was the bravest thing I’ve ever done and thinking it was the dumbest thing I’ve ever done. Okay, so maybe it was brave, but the dumb part is, I did not have a back-up plan. I had interviewed for a job a few weeks ago and was in the final stages but ultimately was not chosen for the position. So, I quit and now have no income, other than a few freelance writing and editing projects here and there.

I just could not stand being in that place for one moment longer. It’s a long story and maybe you have to be in the newspaper business to understand it, but suffice it to say, my manager did not support me, never took my side, never stood up for me. And on this particular Tuesday morning, it was three hours until deadline and I was being asked to redo everything I’d already done for that week’s paper. I’d finished it the night before but it wasn’t in the proper format for this difficult paginator (the person who lays the stories and ads out in the paper) so I was asked to rewrite everything, basically. Never mind that every other paginator I work with has never complained about me and this one does. When neither her manager nor mine stuck up for me, it was the final straw. Not to mention that the powers that be were constantly sending out emails whose sole purpose it seemed was to belittle the editors and reporters. One editor in particular could do no wrong, and we were constantly reminded of it. Such things gnaw at you after a while.

So I left, and I haven’t been back, except to get my stuff and turn in my key. When I did that, my former coworkers wouldn’t even look at me, much less talk to me. This made me realize that I made the right decision.

Now, of course, I feel the anxiety of realizing my last paycheck was the last one I know I’m getting for a while and how on earth am I going to pay my bills? So yeah, it was brave, but perhaps also stupid. I know many people have dreamed of walking out on a job, and I did it. So maybe I should be proud. I’d just feel a whole lot better if one of my books finally became a best-seller or I found another great-paying job extremely quickly.

For the time being, I’m trying to enjoy not being in a position that caused me anxiety, stress and depression. My dog is my coworker, my office is my kitchen or bedroom, and maybe that’s okay. Maybe I can make this freelance thing a go.

I do know one thing for sure. I am not giving up. I’ve got dreams, and I still want to see them realized.

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AFTER THE FALL release day!!!!

So here it is, the eve of the “official” release of my second novel, AFTER THE FALL, and still, it all feels so surreal to me. I have TWO books out now??? No way!! It truly is a dream come true and I couldn’t be more grateful to my publisher, Swoon Romance, and my editor, Georgia McBride, for helping my lifelong dream of being a published author come true!!! 😀 *BIG HUGS ALL AROUND*

Since the release of GOING HOME AGAIN in 2013, I’ve had trouble believing this was really happening. I think it took seeing my name on Amazon and B&N.com, with my beautiful book cover to make it sink in. And then, a few months later, when I held a print copy in my hands… well, it was indescribable.

And now, it’s all happening again with AFTER THE FALL and holy crap, I’m beyond excited, people!!! I really hope everyone reads the book and enjoys it as much as — or possibly more– than they enjoyed GOING HOME AGAIN. The stories are interconnected, obviously, but I never really expected to write about Tina’s lie after the divorce from Mike. Now I’m so glad I did! I’ve grown to really love Tina, her love interest, the delicious Josh and even her best friend, Roz, who I honestly hated when I created her for GOING HOME AGAIN!

It just goes to show that you should never rule out anything as a writer. Something that makes you think “WTF?” when the idea is first posed to you could turn out to be the best ting you’ve ever written!

Anyhoo, without further ado, here’s the info on AFTER THE FALL:

High-profile divorce? Check.

Time away to heal? Check. Six months.

Distance from her celebrity ex Michael Day? Almost.

After ending the relationship that defined her, Tina is desperate to get her life back. But, a sexy bartender who happens to be ten years her junior might not be the best way to do that.

Shaking off the pain of the past, Tina decides the old rules no longer apply. For the first time in a very long time, Tina is free to do what she wants with whomever she wants. And Tina wants Josh.

Tina’s first fling after her divorce has the potential to be something more, if only Josh wasn’t a struggling musician.

She watched Michael’s career soar beyond his wildest dreams, only to get swallowed up by the fame and fortune that came with it. In the end, Tina was left with a broken marriage, a broken heart, and a custody agreement.

Tina wants to focus on herself, to finally find a place in the world that doesn’t come from marrying a celebrity. But if she ends this thing with Josh and focuses on a career, she might lose her one shot at happiness.

And here’s the link on Amazon if you haven’t found it already!

http://www.amazon.com/After-Fall-Going-Home-Again-ebook/dp/B00Y5RMT8A/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1432599629&sr=1-1&keywords=After+the+Fall+Abby+Cavenaugh

And, here’s my first novel, GOING HOME AGAIN, just in case you haven’t read it first. Both stories have a very different perspective on life and love!

http://www.amazon.com/Going-Home-Again-ebook/dp/B00ED6MS9I/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top

And please remember to always leave a review so we authors know what you think. Love all my readers! 🙂 ❤

P.S.- I leave you with this lovely gif of Theo James, who would play Josh Cooper if I had my way!!

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Cover Reveal: AFTER THE FALL

It’s here! It’s here!!! It seems like I waited FOREVER (as I’m sure most authors feel) to finally have my first novel published, and now, it’s almost time for my second novel!! Eeek! So exciting!! As I mentioned before, the cover is very different from my first novel, GOING HOME AGAIN, but I absolutely love it! So, without further ado, here’s the BEAUTIFUL cover, and everything you need to know about AFTER THE FALL! 😀

COVER REVEAL
Title: After the Fall
Author: Abby Cavenaugh
Publisher: Swoon Romance
Cover Design: Swoon Romance
Release Date: May 2015

SYNOPSIS
It’s been six months since her high-profile divorce, and Tina is desperate to get her life in order beyond the spotlight of her ex-husband, pop singer Michael Day. But when she meets a sexy bartender who happens to be ten years her junior, Tina’s first fling after her divorce might become something more. Tina can’t resist Josh’s charms, but she needs something more in her life than another wannabe singer. Tina wants to focus on herself, to finally find a place in the world that didn’t come from marrying a celebrity. If Tina ends her fling and focuses on a career, she might lose her heart in the process. However, her second chance at love might also be her first chance to live.

After the Fall Ebook Cover

GOODREADS LINK: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/24241177-after-the-fall

AUTHOR BIO
Abby Cavenaugh is a writer of romantic women’s fiction for Swoon Romance, with her debut novel, GOING HOME AGAIN, out now. She lives in North Carolina with her twin sister, Amy, also a writer, her niece Adeline, three cats and a puppy. She loves chocolate, Diet Coke, the beach, New Kids on the Block, and most of all, writing.

AUTHOR LINKS
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AbbyCavenaughAuthor

Twitter: https://twitter.com/abswrites

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/abs1399/

Publisher Website: http://www.myswoonromance.com/

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What Happens ‘After The Fall’?

As most of you know, one of the biggest dreams of my life came true almost two years ago. My debut novel was published by Swoon Romance. To say that I was ecstatic, would be a massive understatement.

But, one dream achieved, more to go! As I always tell people, once you reach one dream, you make new dreams. So, of course, the next goal for me was to publish a second book. Now, that dream is soon to be fulfilled, thanks again to Swoon Romance! 😀

Although I don’t have a firm release date yet, I know AFTER THE FALL will be out sometime in May. 🙂 So what is AFTER THE FALL about, you wonder? I’m so glad you asked!!!

Well, if you read my debut novel, GOING HOME AGAIN, you may have wondered about some of the secondary characters. Out of nowhere, I suddenly had this idea that surprised even me. What if I wrote about what happened to Michael Day’s ex-wife, Tina? I have to thank my friend Masumi from Japan, because before I even finished the first draft of GOING HOME AGAIN, Masumi was the first to ask if I could add in a few chapters from Tina’s point-of-view. I couldn’t make it work for GHA. It turns out, Tina deserved her own story. And I can’t wait for you all to read it!!!

But first, the cover reveal! It’s scheduled for a week from today, March 23. I can’t wait for you all to see the cover… it’s very different from GHA but I love it so hard. Here’s the info on how to sign up for the cover reveal, if you so desire. 🙂

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1KnfTrK8QjdwZxQ1d0e6OMjg6uG0cvIQrggJg-dQRZcI/viewform

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Cover Reveal: SING FOR ME by Gracie Madison

Today I’m doing a cover reveal for Gracie Madison’s debut novel, SING FOR ME. Look at it. It’s soooo pretty!!!
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BOOK & AUTHOR INFO:
Sing For Me by Gracie Madison
Publication date: January 23rd 2015
Genres: New Adult, Paranormal Romance
Synopsis:

Madeline Noel fled war-torn Heaven to hide within the mortal world, but the blessing that could protect her from evil is the holy realm’s forbidden power.

As a talented soprano for the Eden Theatre Company, Madeline hides among prima donnas and tone-deaf flutists. Her perfect voice may entertain audiences, but a careless laugh may shatter glass, and her greatest scream can kill. To control her unrestrained voice, the angels forbid Madeline from embracing the emotions that strengthen her song. Anger. Fear.

Love.

The demon-hunter Damascus vows to defend Madeline from Hell’s relentless evil, but he cannot protect her from her own feelings. Though they deny their dangerous attraction, her guardian becomes her greatest temptation.

Surrendering to desire may awaken the gift suppressed within Madeline’s soul, and neither Heaven nor Hell will allow such absolute power to exist.

AUTHOR BIO:
Gracie Madison would spend every day, all day writing…if it were socially acceptable.  Ever since she was a little girl scribbling with a crayon, Gracie’s dedicated herself to her books and all the supernatural and paranormal, creepy and beautiful stories and characters born within the pages. Now Gracie is committed to finally sharing those books with the world.  When the laptop is pried from her hands, Gracie is probably working her day job, rooting on the Steelers, or out with her husband searching for Pittsburgh’s best sushi.
Gracie
Author Links:
There’s also a giveaway for a $25 Amazon gift card so you know you want to check that out!!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Happy Anniversary to me!

Wow… I can’t believe it’s been a year since the release of my first novel, GOING HOME AGAIN, from Swoon Romance!

It’s all been a very surreal ride, and I thought I would share with you all what it’s been like. Of course, publishing my first novel was a dream come true for me.

GOING HOME AGAIN had some decent sales, and I’ll never forget the first time I saw it on my Kindle, and even more unforgettable was finally getting to hold the book I wrote in my hands. So. Many. Feels.

It’s been something of a roller coaster ride. Let’s just say GOING HOME AGAIN was never a best-seller, but still, it’s an amazing feeling to have people you don’t know reading your work and telling you they love it. I can’t even imagine what it would feel like to have a best-seller on top of that. Hopefully someday I will know.

If you’re still waiting for your first novel to be published, keep the faith. It will happen if you work hard enough and stay persistent. God knows I’ve wanted to give up so many times. But in the end, it was worth it to keep at it and finally see my book in print.

I’ll be forever grateful to Georgia McBride and Swoon Romance, and all my readers, for making this dream come true. Now, on to the next dream… I hope you’ll all continue to stay with me for the ride! More exciting stuff coming soon. I promise! 😀

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