Leigh Goff

Enchanting Fiction for the Young at Heart ♥


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The Power of Read Local

There is a social trend of ‘local first’ movements spreading around our nation that

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deltatoast Pixabay

focuses on improving local economies and supporting communities from within. Supporting local, whether it be farms, shops, authors, or restaurants is a great way for groups of committed people to affect change in their neighborhoods. One of these ‘local first’ movements is called Read Local.

Read Local benefits the community and makes communities unique. An example of this is Maryland author Nora Roberts who has her own foundation that supports literacy, and she also donates to programs with local organizations being a priority.

When I wrote my second YA novel, Bewitching Hannah, historic downtown Annapolis inspired me. With my published novel, I wanted to highlight what makes my town unique with the hope of making it more of a destination than it already is. I included popular sights and historic houses as the settings where much of the action takes place. The feedback I received from local readers was that they wanted to visit or revisit the places they’d read about in my book so I created a literary tour for them that included all the sights I used in my novel. Here’s a link to the self-guided tour: https://leighgoff.com/2017/08/31/a-bewitching-tour-around-historic-annapolis/

bhcoverartbevel-2There are many libraries that recognize the significance of this movement. Cascades Library in Potomac Falls, Virginia is one of them and they are hosting their third annual Eat Local/Read Local event this September 29th from 10am to 1pm. I’ll be there selling, signing, and donating books.

The Maryland/Delaware/West Virginia chapter of SCBWI (Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators) created a Read Local Challenge that I participate in, as well. This particular local challenge begins every September and lasts through the school year. It gives local authors a chance to do book signings, Q & As and presentations at participating schools, libraries, homeschool groups, book clubs, and scout troops. Participants that read the most books on the list become eligible to win prizes including a prize pack of signed books. If you’re a teacher, librarian, or a book club leader click here for more information: https://mddewv.scbwi.org/files/2016/09/Read-Local-2018-19-Book-List.pdf.

Literary artists need their community and the community needs its artists. As Margaret Mead once said, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” Let’s READ LOCAL!


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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

I love writing young adult fiction with elements of magic and romance because it’s also what I like to read. Born and raised on the East Coast, I now live in Maryland where I enjoy the area’s great history and culture.

I am a graduate of the University of Maryland, University College and a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI). I am also an approved artist with the Maryland State Arts Council. My debut novel, Disenchanted, was inspired by the Wethersfield witches of Connecticut and was released by Mirror World Publishing. My second novel, Bewitching Hannah, is a young adult fantasy set in historic Annapolis.

Stay connected with me on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Goodreads.


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Damned Good Date Night Dinner

Today I am reviewing a recipe I tested from Sloane Taylor’s Date Night Dinners – an inspiring new recipe book.

This is true comfort food and a recipe I plan to make over and over!  51BbV5n9boL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_.jpgI have never reviewed a recipe before so this was new for me. I am happy to report that testing out the “Damned Good Pot Roast” recipe, knowing I had to stick (mostly) to the ingredients and instructions and report on my experience was actually a lot of fun!

I enjoy cooking, and as my husband and I have recently become empty nesters, I’ve been struggling to recall how to cook for two. Thanks to this cookbook, I don’t have to. My favorite recipes are in there and designed for two, making this cookbook perfect for us!

What was really great was that I didn’t have to search somewhere else for complimentary side dishes to go with the main course. Taylor includes suggestions with each main course recipe. I went with her suggested loaf of French bread for the pot roast, but I opted for the Snazzy Tomato Salad only because I had two large, ripe, summer tomatoes on the counter and I wholly enjoy fresh tomatoes.

Sloane Taylor even offers wine pairing suggestions to go with the meals, which I again followed. A lovely glass of California Cabernet paired perfectly with the juicy roast. Unknown-2.jpeg

The main course recipe listed easy to find ingredients, such as fresh garlic, dried oregano, and beef stock. The instructions were easy to follow, too. The only thing I changed was the amount of mini carrots I added to the cooking roast. The recipe suggested fifteen, but I love carrots, so I doubled the amount. After two hours and fifteen minutes in the oven, I removed the roast and vegetables. While the meat and vegetables rested on a platter under a sheet of aluminum foil, I proceeded to make the mouthwatering gravy.

This was an easy, five-star meal to prepare and the final result of savory beef and tender roasted carrots and red potatoes was simply scrumptious. As we head into a season of cool evenings and changing leaves, I found this to be the perfect meal to warm hearts and souls.

If you’re looking for a cookbook with fresh ideas on dinnertime favorites, I am happy to recommend DATE NIGHT DINNERS – Meals to Make Together for a Romantic Evening.

31YNsRNX6ZL._US230_.jpgAbout my favorite Kitchen Goddess, Sloane Taylor:

Sloane Taylor is an Award-Winning author with a second passion in her life. She is an avid cook and posts new recipes on her blog every Wednesday. The recipes are user friendly, meaning easy.

Taylor currently has seven romance novellas released by Toque & Dagger Publishing. Her first solo venture into non-fiction is a cookbook with eighty of her favorite recipes DATE NIGHT DINNERS – Meals to Make Together for a Romantic Evening: Cookbook for Two  was released  June 5, 2018.

Excerpts from her books can be found on her website, blog, and all popular vendors. Connect with Taylor on Facebook and Twitter.

BUY LINKS:

AMAZON

KOBO


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Eat Local ~ Read Local Book Festival at Cascades Library!

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Get a taste of homegrown writers and food sources at Cascades Library‘s Eat Local, Read Local Book Sale & Festival. The FREE third annual event features food trucks, live music, story times, raffles and more than 70 local authors selling and signing books. Bring the whole family and support the writers, businesses and artists in our community. Over 70 authors, including Leigh Goff will be on hand for the third annual celebration of local writers and food vendors. For a list of other participating authors visit https://bit.ly/2wMnNe5.

Enjoy live music from Laurie Blue and McKenzie Mees, and let the littles get decked out with Let’s Make a Face – Face Painting and Temporary Tattoos.

Food truck vendors include Blue City Food, Flavour, Jambalaya Bros. and PokeMan Truck.


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Author Shadow Leitner’s New Release–Death & the Maiden

Introducing a new dark tale by Shadow Leitner – Death & the Maiden

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A century ago, Death made  deal with a woman to save her child’s life, but it cost the Devil a soul.

Now, the Devil wants his due. And the only who can save her descendant from an eternity in Hell is Death.

But some fates are worse than death. They are curses. And not all curses can be broken.

Yours for FREE when you sign up for Shadow’s Newsletter, Shadow’s Web.

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Screen Shot 2018-09-23 at 2.27.15 PM.pngAbout the Author:

Shadow Leitner started storytelling early on and spent over a decade in the performing arts but left the stage for the page and now writes Paranormal, Gothic/Dark Fantasy and Sci Fi Romance books for Teens and Adults.

Besides torturing her imaginary characters with love and other peculiar things, she creates beautifully haunting art with her iPhone, consumes absurd amounts of coffee and is enchanted by all things vintage, old world, and macabre.

She haunts from Frederick, Maryland with her husband, two spawn, and a menagerie of mostly domesticated creatures.

Shadow is also the Dark Fiction Maven of Dark Inklings, her blog for Dark Fiction Writers.

Feel free to stalk her on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and Tumblr. But beware, she will most likely stalk you back.

 


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New from Chris Pavesic–The Revelation Chronicles, Book 2 (plus trailer & exclusive excerpt!!!)

Chris Pavesic continues the amazing story of Cami Malifux with Book 2 of the Revelation Chronicles.

Escape from a world of darkness into a magical realm of limitless adventure.

About the Book:

In Starter Zone, Cami kept herself and her younger sister Alby alive in a post-apocalyptic world, facing starvation, violence, and death on a daily basis. Caught by the military and forcefully inscribed, Cami manages to scam the system and they enter the Realms, a Virtual Reality world, as privileged Players rather than slaves. They experience a world of safety, plenty, and magical adventure. Indeed, magic, combat, gear scores, quests, and dungeons are all puzzles to be solved as Cami continues her epic quest to navigate the Realms and build a better life for her family. But an intrusion from her old life threatens everything she has gained and imperils the entire virtual world.

Time to play the game.
Genre:

LitRPG YA Fantasy

Read an Excerpt:

I was born into a world where silicone still ruled. Where the products of the earth outshone those of the sea. Integrated circuits ran all electronic equipment and scientists strove to make the conducting lines smaller and smaller. Silicon Valley tried, and failed, to make chips fast enough to upload human consciousness.

The Revelation came a few years later from the hydrologists. They designed a system that did not use silicone, but instead worked with water molecules. The hydrologists managed to imprint the consciousness of a human mind on a single drop of water.

The water was to be kept in self-contained, sealed aquariums—pure, undiluted, eternal—where virtual realities were constructed to meet every need and desire. All of human knowledge encoded and stored in literal pools of data and integrated with the drops of human consciousness. It was, the hydrologists claimed, utopia achieved.

The obscenely rich were the hydrologist’s first clients, many taken near the end of their lives. The procedure did not always work, but there were enough successes to spur people’s interest. People suffering from terminal illnesses volunteered to be inscribed, and the hydrologists worked and refined their process. Private companies formed and competition forced price wars. Hundreds of customers grew to thousands, and then to millions. There were landmark court cases arguing whether or not health insurance should cover the cost of the inscription–whether or not this was a medical procedure designed to save lives or a form of physician assisted suicide. The law struggled to decide if life ended when the body was drained to a dry, leathery husk, or if life continued inside those glowing, sealed aquariums.

I was thirteen when the governments seized control of the laboratories, first in the Eastern European countries. Then the labs of Europe and the Middle East were swallowed up. Terrorist attacks soon followed and destroyed most of the civilized world over the next three years. The United States, Canada, and Greece, those bastions of democracy, did not fall until the very end. Of course, by then no one cared whether or not the government or the private companies ran the uploading programs. Many of the aquariums ruptured in the strife and the droplets, imbued with human consciousness, re-entered the water cycle of the planet.

The destruction of the aquariums led to a moment of serendipity. Once the hydrologists learned that the human minds survived outside of the aquariums, they designed a world-wide system of interlocking realms to host the inscribed human minds. Right now the realms exist in Challenger Deep, the deepest known point in the Earth’s seabed hydrosphere, but the hydrologists have plans to expand their reach into the rest of the world. Soon, the only life left on the planet will exist in the virtual world.

Time to play the game.

EXCLUSIVE EXCERPT

“Happy birthday!” I exclaim. The waitress, a non-player character, or NPC, named Nellie, places the cake directly in front of my sister. It is a work-of-art, decorated with enough frosting shaped into vines, leaves, and flowers to fill a cottage garden.

“Here you go ladies.”

“Grrarrg?” L.G., our hodag companion, growls playfully.

“Ladies and gentleman,” Nellie corrects herself.

“Wow!” Alby grins at us. “The frosting-flowers are pretty. And so many colors. Is it chocolate cake?”

“Of course,” Nellie replies, as if any other kind would be unthinkable. “With vanilla frosting.”

“Frosting,” L.G. says in his gravelly voice. He smiles and his fangs glow in the candlelight. “Hodags like vanilla frosting.”

“Frosting is the best part of the cake,” I agree. I reach over and rub the fur behind L.G.’s horns. It’s his favorite place to be scratched. He twitches his tail in appreciation.

“Time to sing.” Nellie joins in our rather out-of-tune rendition of the birthday song. Alby applauds our efforts and then leans forward to blow out the candles.

“Remember to make a wish,” I urge.

“Wish,” L.G. echoes.

Nellie turns the gaslights back on. It’s early in the morning and the restaurant is empty except for the four of us. The sun hasn’t even popped over the horizon. “Are you sure that’s all you want to eat? I can whip up some eggs and bacon right quick. And a chef’s salad for Mr. L.G.”

“No thank you.” One of the best parts of living in the realms is the food, and we do have a fondness for Nellie’s cooking. Most days we have at least one meal here.

But it really doesn’t matter what we eat if we are not looking for specific magical buffs, like increased health or stamina. As players we can get nutrition from any type of food. We don’t have to worry about eating a balanced diet. Or gaining weight for that matter.

So eating birthday cake for breakfast is entirely appropriate. Heck, eating birthday cake for every meal over the next ten years would be okay. But I wouldn’t want to limit myself. One of the hydrologists must have been a gourmet chef in the real world because every dish we’ve tried here tastes fantastic. It’s like an explosion of flavor whenever I put food into my mouth.

Purchase Links:

Smashwords

Watch the Book Trailer:

Praise for the Revelation Chronicles:
“She entered the game and I was hooked. I don’t even
play that kind of computer game, but the story was as addicting as I imagine a
real MMORPG to be. Each level up, each new character, each new threat drew me
in. I wish I could read the next book already!” –Kata, NetGalley Reviewer
“I love the dystopian genre, and a lot of the problem I
run into is a lot of them are boring and follow the same storyline. This one is
so different it’s amazing. I cannot recommend this enough. It’s sci-fi, it’s
dystopian, and it fresh. A definite must read that I plan on reading
again!” –Liliyana S., NetGalley Reviewer
“Both sisters are strong female characters who are good role
models for young girls.  This story is
filled with suspense and adventure with a taste of the gaming world.  It is the first LITRPG book that I have read
and I really enjoyed it.” –Teresa O, Educator
“This book was amazing! The story line, along with the
development of the characters was phenomenal. This book is very well paced, and
easy to follow. Seeing the story play out for the characters, along with the
lessons you gain from reading this book, makes it one of my new favorites. For,
this book is more than just another dystopia novel. It’s basis is on family
love, and what you’d do to keep them safe. It’s a young adult novel, yet is
appropriate for anyone above the age of 10. I would highly suggest reading this
book ASAP. You won’t regret it!”–Almaz D, Reviewer
Book 1:Starter Zone

Amazon

Want to learn more about The Revelation Chronicles? Check out chrispavesic.com for updates on this and her other series.Meet the Author:

Chris Pavesic lives in the Midwestern United States and
loves Kona coffee, fairy tales, and all types of speculative fiction. Between
writing projects, Chris can most often be found reading, gaming, gardening,
working on an endless list of DIY household projects, or hanging out with
friends.
Amazon Author Page: https://amzn.to/2NlNJXB

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