Thank you so much

I am overwhelmed by the great wishes, generous reviews, and the outpouring of love and support you all have given me during the launch of Vacant. It truly means the world to me. Thank you. I am so lucky to have such amazing readers!

In appreciation, I’m sharing more deleted scenes from Mindspace to give you guys more Mindspace. Here are three brand new deleted scenes:

Adam’s Brother (a deleted scene from Marked)

The Marsh (a deleted scene from Vacant)

Psychic (a deleted scene from Vacant)

I hope you enjoy.

Also, for those who are interested, the Clue-inspired Scavenger Hunt is still on & going strong until December the 20th. One lucky entry will get a character named after them in a future book.

Thank you guys again. I am so lucky to have you as readers.

With all joy,
Alex

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Talk Mindspace with Me

Hi all, I’ll be doing a Facebook chat today (Nov. 29th) at 4:00 pm EST at my Facebook page.

Come ask me questions, squee with other fans, and talk Mindspace with those who get it.

Also, for the early readers, there will be a spoiler-friendly chat Saturday December 6th at 2:00 pm EST. More details forthcoming.

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VACANT Blog Tour and Scavenger Hunt Starts Today!

Today we’re starting a month long celebration of the release of VACANT! We’ve got guest posts, interviews, excerpts, and reviews lined up to give everyone a bit more info about the genre, the story, and me! Below you’ll find the complete tour schedule of blog hosts, and links to their sites.

VACANTBlogTourBanner2

In addition to the posts, we’re doing a CLUE like scavenger hunt. In case you haven’t played CLUE… it’s a mystery game, and the rules are super simple…

How To Play

Just like the classic game of CLUE, your job is to try to determine WHO committed a crime, in what SETTING, and with what WEAPON.

In our game to celebrate the release of VACANT, most of the clues will relate to the Mindspace Investigations world and characters.

At participating blog tour stops, you’ll find clues, clearly marked, that you can cross those off your checklist. At the end of the blog tour, you should be able to see who/where/what the culprit is by which items on your list are remaining. to be clear, the clues you FIND are not going to be the winning guesses… you’re trying to determine what is left at the end of the game.

Starting on December 20th, there will be a rafflecopter entry form here on this blog to make your guess. A grand prize winner will be chosen randomly from the correct entries after the blog tour is over, on December 24th. What’s the prize, you ask?

Winner gets a $25 gift card to Barnes & Noble, a signed copy of Marked, and a character from a future book named after him/her.

Be sure to check each participating blog on the tour for interviews, guest posts, excerpts, reviews, individual blog prizes (all sorts of Mindspace Investigations goodies) and, of course, the clues!!

So, there you have it. You can right click and save the clue list below. Under the checklist is our schedule of blog tour hosts. Also… it’s only a week until VACANT is available for everyone!! Thank you for your support thus far. I’m excited to see everyone’s thoughts about the book, the blog tour, and the game.

Good Luck.

VacantCLUEChecklist1

 

 Blog Tour Schedule:

Nov 25th – SF Signal
Nov 26th – I Smell Sheep
Nov 27th – Thanksgiving (US)
Nov 28th – Ashley’s Random Blog
Dec 1st – What The Cat Read
– BookHounds
Dec 2nd – NicholasKaufmann.com
Books Make Me Happy
Dec 3rd – Vampire Book Club
Dec 4th – Little Read Riding Hood
Dec 5th – Insane About Books
Dec 8th – BiblioFiend
Dec 9th – Smart Girls Love Sci/Fi & Paranormal Romance
Dec 10th – Reading Reality
Dec 11th – Short & Sweet Reviews
Between The Lines
Dec 12th – That’s What I’m Talking About
Anna’s Book Blog
Dec 15th – Tynga’s Reviews
Dec 16th – Janice Hardy – Fiction University
Dec 17th – Suzanne Johnson – Preturnatura
Amberkatze’s Book Blog
Dec 18th – Fantasy Literature
That’s What I’m Talking About
Dec 19th – Books That Hook
Literal Addiction
Dec 21st – Literary Escapism
Dec 22nd – Open Book Society
Dec 23rd – My Bookish Ways

December 2nd – VACANT (Mindspace Investigations, #4) releases!!
December 20th – Rafflecopter entry form posted and open for guesses.

CLICK HERE TO MAKE YOUR GUESSES AND ENTER TO WIN!

December 24th – Scavenger Hunt winner randomly chosen (from eligible entries) and announced. You must get ALL THREE GUESSES correct to be eligible to win. GOOD LUCK!!

Posted in blog posts guesting, for readers, guest blogs other places | Tagged , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

The results are in… and fair warning

On Friday I asked my email list (and the wonderful social media community) what you guys wanted for me to do to celebrate the launch of Vacant on December 2nd. I gave you some options, and you guys gave me some great ideas. Here’s the breakdown.

 

What bonuses should I give you guys to celebrate the launch of Vacant first week of December? Pick just two.

A video hangout with nine fans broadcasted live.
17.39%

A Facebook question and answer session on her author page so everyone can join.
43.48%

More Three Words-type stories, a new one every week until the launch.
26.09%

Excerpts and deleted scenes from Vacant. Because Mindspace.
78.26%

 

First off, you guys rock. You asked for things and you will get them.

First, I will be sending out the promised excerpts and deleted scenes to my email list only for the next two Fridays, and then more frequently leading up to the launch. So if you want more Mindspace, make sure you’re on the list! This is your fair warning - these will be list-exclusive items. (Hint: if you’re not on the list, wander over to the box on the bottom right and sign up. You’ll also get some free non-Adam short stories.)

Second, because you guys asked, I’ll be doing a Facebook question and answer session sometime in the week leading up to the launch. It’s a little tricky since that’s Thanksgiving week, and most people will be traveling. Perhaps the Monday evening before the launch Tuesday would work out best?

I’m also playing around with the idea of a Q&A (on Goodreads, perhaps, or Reddit if I can figure that out) the week after the launch for those who read early and want to ask follow up questions. A kind of Book Club for the true fans. Might be a fun Saturday activity on the 6th. What do you say?

As for your awesome ideas:

  • I will be doing a signed copy drawing on Goodreads. Great idea.
  • I’m drafting Book Five during NaNo, so that’s already in the works. Yay!
  • I also *love* the idea of auctioning off a named character for charity, so I’ll do a bit more digging on how that works (suggestions welcome).
  • Last but not least? The Tech Wars stories are something I want to do, but I want to finish Adam’s series and at least one more in another world before I come back to them. I love that you guys are so excited! Please do be patient with me while I make the other ideas in my head happy :)

Oh, and stayed tuned. I’ll be doing something special for my blog tour this time!

Only 28 days and counting…

Posted in big milestones, launch countdown, Yay me! | 4 Comments

Spooky Halloween Blog Hop

Bats and Moon spooky picture

To celebrate Halloween, I’m posting an exclusive section of Vacant, the fourth Mindspace Investigations novel out December 2nd. One lucky person who comments below (or posts on Twitter including @ahugheswriter so I see you) will receive his/her choice of an audiobook in the series OR an *early* copy of Vacant when I receive it more than two weeks prior to publication date. So you’ll want to make sure to comment or Tweet!

Vacant cover

Make sure to keep reading after the excerpt for a list of other blogs to visit for spooky words and fun giveaways.

Happy Halloween!

Alex

___________

We drove through several streets in Savannah until we ended up at a long concrete box with bars on the window, what looked much more rough than the one and only gun shop and range Cherabino had taken me to a few months ago. One lone street light sputtered overhead, a half-dead biolumescent bush in a median in the cracked parking lot looking like it hadn’t had any water in years.

The sign above the concrete front said Hard Knocks in harsh lettering, with a single painted gun shot hole, with a ragged edge.

Mendez and Jarrod went ahead, to introduce themselves to the gun shop owner; I collected myself, finally getting out once I was sure there was no minds around likely to be an issue for Tommy. The surroundings felt… too empty, actually. Much too empty, though I couldn’t put my finger on any particular reason why.

My feet weren’t used to dress shoes, and so the blisters of the day rubbed as I walked across the parking lot, low-level distracting pain. I’d had to learn to ignore much worse as part of my Guild training, so it wasn’t a deal breaker. But I’d have to peel off the socks and treat the things so they didn’t get infected later.

I felt Tommy’s impatience a step behind me. And a sudden burst of emotion from Jarrod in Mindspace ahead, tamped down all too suddenly. I walked in the front door, which they’d already opened, and saw why.

Lying on the floor was someone I presumed was the gun shop owner, shot in the chest at least twice, blood bloomed on his shirt already drying into that funny brown-red, limps already stiffening in rigor mortis.

“I take it you did not expect a crime scene in here?” I asked Jarrod, blocking Tommy’s view of the scene with my body. Just in time, felt like.

“Hey, I want to see,” he said.

“No you don’t,” I said.

Jarrod sighed, and walked over to the wall where a phone hung.

__________________

Ah, murder and mayhem in the world of telepathy. Gotta love it.

Need more spooky reads & giveaways? Check out my fellow blog hop writers in the list below.

Lisa Alber – a copy of the Kilmoon mystery book and an Irish gift

Heather Webb – signed books or chocolate

Anna Lee Huber – giving away audiobooks for the Lady Darby Mysteries

Jennifer Delamere – advanced copy of “A Bride for the Season”

Kerry Schafer – signed copy of Wakeworld

Stacy Lee – advanced copy of Under the Painted Sky

Janet B Taylor – $15 Amazon gift card and some chocolate goodies

Hazel Gaynor - advanced copy of The Memory of Violets

Posted in Uncategorized | 26 Comments

Flash Fiction & Giveaway at Books Make Me Happy

bmmhhalloweenflashfictionbanner1

Hi all,

Today I’m participating in Jennifer’s Halloween Flash Fiction event over at Books Make Me Happy. Check it out for a flash fiction story by me and a chance to win a copy of Marked.

Alex

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My New York Adventure

If you’ve been following me on social media, you know that I recently visited New York for ComicCon. Since I’d never been to New York before, that was a little nuts (in a great way). I’d only ever seen the city in television and the movies, and it was both more and less than I was expecting.

I landed in JFK, because what do I know and the flight was cheaper. Then I take a taxi to Times Square. My hotel was supposedly the Times Square South location. One would think it was at Times Square, right? Actually, no, it was ten blocks south in 36th, but that’s another story. So, first foot set in New York, in the middle of the hubbub of Times Square, culture shock in all its loud glory. I get lost. Three times. I finally only make it due to the kindness of a random doorman. (“Are you lost, honey? Can I help you find it?”) Then I make it to the hotel, but it’s the wrong hotel. Time for good directions, deep breathing, and a stop at Olive Garden because they’d actually let me sit down. Then a ten block trek south before I finally find it.

Then ComicCon. With 150,000 people. You know, like this.

ComicCon at the Javits Center. With a LOT of people.

 

That was early on Saturday. Later the mound of people (seen at the back) covered the entire floor. It was overwhelming. Truly, truly overwhelming. Getting lunch was a little like scaling a high mountain in a thunderstorm. You needed a sherpa to get anywhere in good time.

I was amazed at how friendly the New York geeks were. People would actually talk to you about your favorite fandom in line for coffee, sitting in rest places, even in line for panels. They showed up in costume, they had joyous opinions, and when they heard you didn’t know about the Favorite Thing they were there for, they’d share all the details with you so you could love it too. If New Yorkers are as rude as advertised, I didn’t see it at ComicCon. In fact, they were very warm.

I was on the Doctor Who panel with some amazing folks, and the audience was wonderful too. (You can listen to it in all its glory here at the 6:00 mark thanks to the amazing Anton Strout.) I was also lucky enough to make it to other panels that made me squee in fangirl glee. Also-NASA. And companies in space. In space!

After collapsing into a small puddle at the end of the weekend, I was lucky enough to have lunch with my amazing editor, Rebecca Brewer, who I had also able to hang out with during the con. Rebecca is from Texas, and a total nerd, and it was such a joy to meet her in person. (I will admit to having knit her a hat.) She was kind enough to get me sorted on the subway, otherwise known as the most confusing place in the world, and I was off to see more of New York.

I saw Mood, the Project Runway store that was *way* bigger and more cramped than I ever expected.

IMG_2834

Look at all the fabric. In piles. It takes up FAR more room than walking. Who needs walking?

Also, I went to see The Last Ship, which was really great. Broadway type musical! With cool choreography and a totally unexpected feel. LOVED. My writer brain wants to rewrite the ending though :)

The_Last_Ship_Musical

I met up with friend A.E. Decker to do the grand tour of the city on Tuesday. (9.5 miles of walking. I know because pedometer.) We visited the Obscura shop from Oddities, had astonishing bagels and scones, and saw the Fashion District, the Village, a really cool comic shop with Planet in its title, and many other areas that made me happy. I love that you can walk everywhere in New York, but I dislike that you aren’t really allowed to sit down. Ever. Considering I was toting a 30-pound bag (because visitor), the not sitting thing became a problem!

My all time favorite stop? The amazingness that was Chocolate Moderne, a place on the fifth floor of a nondescript building where you have to tap on an unmarked door to get in. Their chocolate is a spiritual experience.

IMG_2835

Then off to Pennsylvania with my friend, a knitting shop, a vinegar store, and brainstorming for more amazing stories. Then the plane home, happy and exhausted from all the people and all the sights. A wonderful week, but tiring! I needed two days to recover from introvert burnout. So happy though. :)

 

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Too Many Choices

There are two great truths in any life:

  1. Given enough time, resources, and energy, you can do anything.
  2. There will never be enough time, resources, and energy to do everything.

I am running up against the second rule like crazy right now. I have literally a pile of “Someday/Maybe” work and an even bigger pile of work I’d like to do reasonably soon. At last count, I had six projects thought out enough to become good novels, maybe four more still thinking through, an idea for a play, a video game, and a host of short stories, not to mention old projects I could revise and/or finish. The more I train my brain to come up with good stories, the more I come up with good stories. This is a lovely problem to have! But sometimes it’s like trying to drink out of a fire hose. A great novel takes time and focused attention, meaning I have to actively choose not to work on All the Other Things, sigh.

Of course writing isn’t all I do. I’m going to New York ComicCon at the end of the week (if you’re around there, do drop by my Dr. Who panel Sunday to say hi) I’m also working on classes I’ll be teaching in the next few months, and all the host of little business decisions that go along with writing professionally. I’d like to get back to writing short shorts for the email newsletter, for example, and I have a book launch coming up. Not to mention email, which seems to breed like rabbits whenever I leave it alone for very long.

When I worked in marketing, it was a point of professional pride that nothing I was in charge of ever got dropped. I worked in a team of at least four people to make sure that was always true. Now that I’m the one running my own working life, I’m finding out it’s not so easy. For every Thing I choose to do, there is another Thing (or five) that I cannot. Those decisions were always handled by the executive types, or the manager types above me, and I’m starting to appreciate how hard they worked to say no. It is a skill I must master this year, I think. Right now it feels like that impossible yoga pose where you balance on one leg with your knee over your shoulder, but I’ve seen people do that, too. It is not impossible! Or so I tell myself. I can do this.

So, time to stretch out the mental skills. Time to learn priorities, and do deep thinking about the novel I’ll be drafting in NaNo this year. And time, most of all, to accept that All the Things will not happen at once.

I feel very old, and very limited, all at once.

What about you guys? How do you cope with difficult decisions and juggling too many things? I’d love to hear any tips and tricks you have.

Posted in being brave, business, Don't Give Up, life update, Managing My Time | 1 Comment

Great News for My Audiobook Listeners

Most of you already know that my first three Mindspace novels, Clean, Sharp, and Marked, are available as audiobooks through Audible.com. The amazing Daniel May is the narrator, and I couldn’t be more happy with the way he brings Adam to life as a character through his words. There are samples you can play at all three pages–the one for Clean in particular puts chills up my spine. (The links above are affiliate links; if this bothers you just search on Audible directly.) I’m a huge fan of Daniel May’s work, and I keep getting great comments from readers who love the audio just as much as I do.

Audible will also be producing Vacant, Mindspace #4, hopefully to be released on the same day as the print book, and I’m excited to see what they do. Even better, I’m thrilled to announce we’ve just come to an agreement about the two shorter pieces in the world, Rabbit Trick and Payoff. This means that the audio folks will be able to listen to everything that’s out so far in your preferred format. I’ll let you know release dates when I have them, but if everything goes well, we’re hoping to have one of the shorter pieces out before Vacant. Fingers crossed!

Thanks again to all you guys who read (and listen). You guys rock.

Alex

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My DragonCon Schedule

Hi all,

I’m looking forward to seeing you guys at DragonCon this upcoming weekend on Labor Day! For those who are interested, here’s the stuff I’ll be speaking at. Come say hi! :)

——————-

Title: Protagonist Professions in UF

Description: Authors share how the daytime/mundane jobs their characters hold impact their supernatural existence.

Time: Fri 11:30 am Location: Chastain ED – Westin (Length: 1 Hour)

——————-

Title: Science Fiction 101

Description: A discussion of books and stories that can make for a good grounding in the genre.

Time: Fri 02:30 pm Location: Embassy A-B – Hyatt (Length: 1 Hour)

——————-

Title: Reading: Alex Hughes

Time: Sat 11:30 am Location: Edgewood – Hyatt (Length: 1 Hour)

(Tentative Panelists: Alex Hughes)

——————-

Title: After the Post-Apocalypse

Description: Post-apocalyptic fiction is popular, but what comes next?

Time: Sat 07:00 pm Location: Embassy A-B – Hyatt (Length: 1 Hour)

——————-

Title: Autograph Sessions

Time: Sun 10:00 am Location: International Hall South – Marriott (Length: 1 Hour)

(Tentative Panelists: Travis Walton, Dr. Charles E. Gannon, Milton J Davis, Laurell K. Hamilton, Alex Hughes)

——————-

Title: Supernatural Thrillers: Mystery & Suspense in UF

Description: Authors discuss the importance of the elements of mystery and suspense in their work.

Time: Sun 11:30 am Location: Chastain ED – Westin (Length: 1 Hour)

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