October Goals | Pre-Release Day(s) Rush

Happy Spook-tober, Sparrows!

There’s much to do this month and not a lot of time to do it in, so let’s hop right to it, shall we?

Release Day Prep

October is all about my next two releases. Their dates are close now (*deeeeep breaths, Sarina*), and the run-up is always busy, so I won’t throw too much else at my to-do list.

Blood of the Dragon went back to my editor for its final proofread yesterday, which means I need to get the ARCs done and I need/want to read over it again too, to make sure I’m happy with everything before I hit that button.

Shadow in Ar’Sanciond comes back from betas next week, but since it’s much shorter (yay for prequel novellas!) and out a month after Dragon, I’m a bit more relaxed with it.

Sarina’s Sparrows

My Facebook Reader Group is now OPEN!

I’m really excited to hang out with my readers in a relaxed, informal setting and talk about books 🥰

I’ve got lots of fun things planned, like exclusive giveaways, early snippets and teasers (including covers and maps!), and lots of gushing about fantasy.

To join, all you need to do is find the group on Facebook, answer three super easy questions, and then you’re in! 

NaNoWriMo Prep

Because all that release day prep isn’t enough, I’ll also be preparing for NaNo.

This is definitely not a bad idea.

The goal is still to write the first words on Blood Song, but I might need to finish Brightened Shadows first. I’ll see how I get on this month.

And that’ll have to be it 🙂 What are you goals for October? Are you preparing for NaNo too?


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September Recap | Booked Covers, Book Trailer Gorgeousness, and Book Release Dates

Happy Fri-yay, Sparrows!

Allow me to start by saying that I misjudged how much time I’d have this month when I announced my September goals. In theory, my plans were fine and achievable, but in reality?

I forgot I’m off this week.

Oops.

So, in hindsight, wanting to write 30k on Brightened Shadows was… ambitious *ahem*

But that doesn’t mean I didn’t make all the progress.

(well, not all the progress, as we’ve just established.)

Here’s what happened this month:

Release Dates

Let’s do the most exciting one first 😉

I’ve set my next three release dates and I’ve announced them on Instagram and my Facebook page, so they’re official!

Here they are for your calendars:

Blood of the Dragon – November 11th

Shadow in Ar’Sanciond – December 9th

Relics of Ar’Zac Box Set – January 26th

Time to get excited, Sparrows.

Relics of Ar’Zac

Blood of the Dragon and Shadow in Ar’Sanciond are with beta readers. Feedback for both has been amazing, my readers love what I’ve done, and they’re almost ready for their final proofread.

I’ve booked the cover for the box set for next month, and my cover designer is finalising the covers for Blood of the Dragon and Shadow in Ar’Sanciond this week. In fact, I prepared this post last week Tuesday, so he’s probably done by the time this post goes live!

It’s all coming together so quickly now.

Somebody hold me.

If you want to be among the first to see the box set cover, sign up to my mailing list and collect some other freebies while you’re there.

Darkened Light

As I said above, I didn’t write 30k this month, but I did pass the 30k mark, which means it’s more than a third of the way there!

That’s 3 3s!

Pretty sure that’s a good sign 😉

And, of course, there’s the incredible trailer. You don’t want to miss it, so watch it now if you haven’t seen it already–or watch it again if you have. I totally get it.

Blood Wisp

I’ve fully plotted Blood Song and can’t wait to start writing it in November. To be honest with you, it’s a little distracting. Brightened Shadows is lucky I’m so focussed.

I went from having no idea who the villain is to not only having a villain, but having a villain I think you’ll love to be torn over. Do you hate him? Do you love him? He’s such a good guy, but look what he did. So, why not both? You’re welcome.

Since Blood Song is plotted now, I also have a pretty good idea of what’ll happen in Blood Vow, and it’s given me ideas for fleshing out Blood Wisp.

It’s all coming together, Sparrows.

Or should I call you Wisps now? Hmm.

Just kidding, you’ll always be my Sparrows <3

What have you achieved this month? Make a tea and tell me about your successes.


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9 Books to Love this Autumn

Autumn is officially here, Sparrows!

*puts on her witch hat and jumps into leaf pile*

You know what’s odd? Back in my last job, I read every day on my lunch break. I got in at least an hour every day that way, and easily read two or three books a month!

You’d think I’d read even more now I’m full-time self-employed, wouldn’t you? I thought so, but my reading has really taken a backseat these last few months since January.

Not to worry though–autumn is here, and that’s the perfect season to curl up with a good book!

There’s nothing better than rainy days, warm blankets, hot teas, and a cat purring on my lap to get me through a reading slump. I’ve never had one of these before and I don’t like it, so let’s kick it in the teeth together, shall we?

The below is a collection of self-published books and traditionally published books, short books and long books, books I’ve loved and books I’ll be reading this autumn.

And the best part?

They all fit into autumn like they were written for the season.

Please note: this post contains affiliate links, which means I may earn a small commission if you make a purchase through one of the links below.

The Shadow of the Wind has been waiting on my shelf for… Oh gawd, has it actually been years? :O I have no excuse 😐

I don’t know much about it other than that it’s about books and maybe a library, and the cover screams, ‘READ ME IN AUTUMN’, so it’s high on my list for this year.

If you like curses, demons, vampires, and disturbing reads rather than horrifying ones, you’ll love The Making of Gabriel Davenport. The writing is beautiful, and the paranormal element fits it perfectly!

While The Name of the Wind isn’t specifically an autumnal read, the cover definitely fits. Love epic fantasy? This is a must-read.

The size put me off a little bit–at 664 pages, this isn’t a fast read–but I soon lost myself in its pages, read the even longer sequel immediately after, and still wanted more. It’s not short, but it is magnificent in every way.

This is another disturbing rather than terrifying read–which is good, because I’m a wimp 😐 If you prefer your horror witchy, cursed, and in a way that’ll make the shadows seem deeper without robbing you of any sleep, then Daughters of the Oak is for you!

And, of course, those autumn leaves on the cover are a must.

The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon has been on my shelf for a while. I’m always a little reserved with authors known for their horror books, but some of King’s other books have shown me that his horror won’t necessarily give me nightmares–and I’ve been told this isn’t like other Kings–so I’m looking forward to it now!

I meant to read it last October but couldn’t quite fit it, so it’s high on my list for this year.

Hell’s Teeth has vampires, the kind of ‘zombie’ that’s faster than you, and so much humour you’ll be laughing on every other page. There’s so much darkness in this, but the MC’s sarcasm will lighten it and make you smile.

Plus, with the release of Book 3 just around the corner, now is the perfect time to get into this series!

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve admired this beauty before I finally bought it. The Necronomicon is required horror reading, isn’t it? Frankly, it’s shameful I haven’t read it already.

It’s huge, though, so I’ll probably take it one story at a time.

A friend recommended Dean Koontz to me years ago, so when my library got rid of Twilight Eyes, I knew I had to keep it. I meant to read it last October, but then other books took longer than expected. It’s high on my pile this year to make up for it.

No list of autumnal reads is complete without my baby Darkened Light 😉 I mean, just *look* at that cover! You know you want it.

What are you reading this autumn? Make a tea, wrap up in that blanket, and tell me about your next read.


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Darkened Light has a book trailer!! *flails*

Hi, Sparrows!

I believe I promised you a book trailer? 😉

Becky and James at Platform House Publishing have outdone themselves this time. Don’t get me wrong, I love my trailer for Rise of the Sparrows SO MUCH, but I think this is the coolest thing I’ve ever seen.

Look:

You can’t convince me that this isn’t the coolest thing you’ve ever seen <3 <3 <3 Don’t you just love it?

*swoons*

And if it’s intrigued you, you can get Darkened Light here 😉


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September Goals | Early NaNo Prep and an Ending Trilogy

Happy September, Sparrows!

Autumn is officially here (and has been for about a week), and I’m glad to have the weather mellow out a little. Warmth is nice, but heatwaves are unnecessary if you ask me–I’m not a fan of sticking to my furniture and melting again two seconds after coming out of the shower.

(you might have seen this post publish last week Wednesday. my bad. sorry about that <3)

Relics of Ar’Zac

September is a big month for my little trilogy. Blood of the Dragon is going to betas this week, and Shadow in Ar’Sanciond will go to betas a little later this month.

And then all that’ll be left to do is the proofread, sending ARCs, and planning the release days!

No biggie.

*shakes*

I should also email my cover designer about the box set, but I’m not sure yet if I’ll do that this month or if it can wait a little longer.

Darkened Light

I’ll have a book trailer for you this month, and I’m aiming to get Brightened Shadows to 50k.

Doesn’t sound like much, but the trailer is exciting af (I should know, I’ve seen it ;)) and I’ve got just over 30k to write, so I can’t wait to get on with both!

Blood Wisp

Since I decided on Friday that Blood Song will be a NaNo baby and since it’s never too early to prepare for NaNo, I’m plotting Blood Song and Blood Vow this month. I made a good start in August, but I’ve still got a lot of fleshing out to do and should probably get to it *ahem*

All being well, I’ll have my outline ready by the end of September so I can plot Blood Vow in October.

Even better, I’ll have both fully plotted! Wouldn’t that be a dream?

And that’s it for September! What are your goals this month? Make a tea and tell me all about them <3


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August Recap | Beta Readers Wanted! (also book trailer news and some tentative release dates/months)

Can you believe it’ll be September in a few short days? :O

(I swear every recap starts like this… What can I say? I’m easily amazed.)

As expected, August has been packed with edits (and some plotting, yay!). The first half was busy and a tad stressful, but the second half has been a dream, to be honest.

Relics of Ar’Zac

Shadow in Ar’Sanciond is with my editor for its line edits, she’s as good as done with Blood of the Dragon line edits, and I’m currently recruiting beta readers for both.

Want in on that fun? Sign up here. I’d love to have you on my team!

I can’t believe how close I am to finishing this series. Blood of the Dragon will definitely be out this year (I’m looking at November), and Shadow in Ar’Sanciond will be out one month later. If it gets too close to Christmas, I might wait until January, but I need to do some thinking on that. The box set will follow soon after that, and it’ll include all four books.

I just– Someone hold me. Or make me tea. Or both.

Darkened Light

I’ve finally made progress on Brightened Shadows! I’m into the 10k, and the plan is to get into the 40k next month and to finish the first draft in October. Given the dark fantasy vibes and autumnal cover I have in mind, I can’t think of a better month for it.

I’ll aim to publish it in October 2020, but it’s way too early to make promises!

It would be perfect though.

Also, Darkened Light has a nearly finished trailer! I’ve seen the unfinished version and it’s a masterpiece, Sparrows. It’s so incredible. You’ll want to watch out for that next month 😉

Blood Wisp

I managed to fit in some plotting! It’s a long shot from a complete outline, but I have a better idea of what needs to happen (and partially also how it’ll happen) in Books 2 and 3 and feel more confident about this whole trilogy going into September.

As I mentioned above, I’m aiming to finish the first draft of Brightened Shadows in October, which would make Blood Song a NaNo baby!

*cries early tears of joy*

Given that all I wanted this month was to get Shadow in Ar’Sanciond to my editor and assemble a beta sqad for Blood of the Dragon, I’m feeling rather accomplished ^-^

How was your August? Make a tea, grab a biscuit, and tell me about your accomplishments <3


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WIP Inspiration: My Recent Trip to Winchester

Hi, Sparrows!

Since one of the most common questions writers get asked is, ‘Where does your inspiration come from?’ I wanted to share what has sparked my inspiration recently.

Now, I don’t usually base my worlds on real places–at least not previously and not to the extent where I snap a picture for reference–but when in Winchester…

For those of you who aren’t familiar with the city, Winchester is a beautiful, historical city in the south of England. Way back, it was the capital! You know, before London claimed that title.

So, it’s unavoidable that some of its charm rubs off on my WIPs.

Have a look at these stunning spots, which will find their way into my Dreamer trilogy:

The last two are from May, which is why the wisteria is in full bloom.

To come back to my current WIP, this hidden spot will likely feature in Brightened Shadows:

It’s not a great picture because we only had our phones and it’s pretty dark down there, but it does prove that I am the shadow.

If this doesn’t look like the entrance to an underground prison… Which is exactly what it’ll be in Brightened Shadows.

Bringing real-life locations into my books is something I want to do more often. I tend to loosely base all countries on real countries, but politics and economics don’t make for pretty aesthetics.

Winchester does, and every time I’m there I find something new. Next time I’m there I’ll have to get a picture of the little cafe where Esta will spend a lot of her time, which is also a personal favourite ^-^

I hope you enjoyed this little insight into my recent inspiration. Let me know if you’d like to see more!


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August Goals | Thank Kittens for Tea!

Hi, everyone!

August is here, and it doesn’t leave much room for error. The first two weeks will require some micro-managing, but the rest should be a little more relaxed *fingers crossed*

If the below doesn’t look like much, it’s only because I’m working on a lot of editing jobs right now.

Relics of Ar’Zac

I’m hoping to get Shadow in Ar’Sanciond to my editor this week, but as I’m writing this post, I still have 27 pages to go and not a lot of spare time to edit them in.

It will be with my editor by the time I update you on how my August went, but the dream would be to get them done this week.

I’ll also assemble my beta team for Blood of the Dragon this month. If you’d like to do it, keep an eye on this blog and/or sign up for my Street Team–you’ll need to be on there to beta anyway, so you may as well sign up now 😉

I’ll let you know when it’s time, so as long as you’re either following this blog, signed up to my team, or following me on Instagram or Twitter, you can’t miss it!

Wait… Is that It?

Not quite. Depending how much time there is once I’ve finished aforementioned editing jobs, I’ll also write the next few thousand words on Brightened Shadows and plot Blood Song and Blood Vow.

Because my early-August schedule is so tight, I won’t set any specific goals for either. The priority is Shadow in Ar’Sanciond and Blood of the Dragon. Everything else is a plus this month.

That‘s it 🙂

What will you achieve this month? Make a tea and tell me about your goals <3


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Rise of the Sparrows is FREE for four days!

I have something exciting to kick off August with 😉

Rise of the Sparrows (Relics of Ar’Zac #1) is FREE until Sunday midnight!

If you love strong female leads, prophesied heroines, magic, handsome rebels, and dark epic fantasy, you’ll want to get it while it’s free.

And with the release of Book 3 in this trilogy inching closer, there’s no better time to catch up 😉

Just today I woke up to this early review on Instagram:

“I’m taking a break from working to enjoy a cup of coffee and this amazing fantasy by @sarinalangerwriter … I’m ten chapters in and hooked like whooooaaaaa! SO GOOD!”

(And yes, it did make my morning <3 *cries happy tears of gratitude*)

The promotion ends on Sunday at midnight PDT, so time’s running out and I won’t have another promotion on Sparrows for… a while.

So, get it here while it’s free!

Happy reading, Sparrow!


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July Recap | Full-Length Novels, BookSprout, Street Teams, and Beta Readering on the Horizon!

Hi, Sparrows!

July has been a whirlwind for me. I have no idea what to open with today, because everything’s kinda a big deal. Let’s do this in no particular order:

Brightened Shadows

While NaNo has been a fail overall, I have written the first few thousand words on the sequel to Darkened Light, and that’s super exciting! I feel like it’s been a long time coming (even though it kinda hasn’t), and it’s been great to be back with these characters.

It’s had to take a little backseat while I work through my editing jobs. July has been extremely kind on that front, but it also means that my own books have to wait. I’ve been focussing on Shadow in Ar’Sanciond, but I’ll get to that in a minute 🙂

Blood Wisp Trilogy

This is possibly the biggest change I’ve made all month–if you’re following me on Instagram, Facebook, and/or Twitter, you’ll already have seen it:

Originally, the Blood Wisp trilogy was going to be three novellas. One of my critique partners has pointed out that the three read more like one book rather than three individual ones, and she’s right!

So, what’s currently three novellas will become the first full-length novel, and there’ll be two full-length sequels after that. So, there’ll still be three books, but not quite as I planned 🙂

I’m afraid it’ll take longer because of that (I’m aiming for late 2020 now, so roughly a year later, but no promises–it’s way too early for that!), BUT you’ll also get more Michiko and Aza goodness, so that’ll be worth it 😉

Relics of Ar’Zac

There are a few bits here, so I’ll use sub-headings so you can skip the ones you don’t care about.

Rise of the Sparrows

In case you missed it:

I have a book trailer 😉

BookSprout

Wardens of Archos (Relics #2) is on BookSprout at the moment! There are only 20 copies available for download and review, so if you’d like to review it for free, get it while there are still copies.

My Sparrow Street Team is recruiting!

There are zero obligations, meaning you promote the books you want to promote without worrying about me kicking you off the list when you don’t promote something.

I provide images and links to make it super easy for you.

Take a look at the details and sign up here.

I do have a promotion coming up, but there’s another reason to sign up too:

Blood of the Dragon

This is now with my editor and she shouldn’t be much longer, which means it’s almost time for beta readers.

*totally doesn’t freak out at all*

*breathes into paper bag*

If you’ve read Rise of the Sparrows and Wardens of Archos and want to be a beta reader for the final book in this trilogy, sign up for my Sparrow Street Team and I’ll email you when it’s ready.

Shadow in Ar’Sanciond

This is almost with my editor for its line edit, which means I’ll need beta readers here soon too! You don’t need to have read the other books in the series to beta this one since it’s a prequel novella, so all the more reason to join my Street Team 😉

And that’s it for July! If you have any questions about my Street Team or want to tell me how your July has been, make a tea and leave a comment below <3


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