Cover Reveal: Freeze Thaw!

It’s time!!!

Guess what? It’s time again! The next Seasons of Magic is coming!

You may have seen this one floating around on the home page of this site for YEARS, and I kept promising to release it. It’s a story I wrote as part of Rooglewood Press’s Five Magic Spindles contest (Sleeping Beauty retellings), and it hit the top ten finalist list! Of those ten, five were chosen for the anthology…mine wasn’t picked because it didn’t quite fit with the others.

But that one thing inspired the entire Seasons of Magic series. We’ve already seen Rapunzel in Of the Clouds and Hansel & Gretel in Pumpkin Spice Pie-Jinks.

Now meet Talia, my Ice Age Sleeping Beauty, waking in the middle of a glacier archaeology dig.

Here’s the blurb:

An archaeology student, an Ice Age princess, and an undead sorceress…

Talia was meant to be her clan’s greatest leader. But when her parents fail to invite a powerful—and very dangerous—sorceress to her birth party, the clan’s long-desired blessing becomes their final curse. As Talia comes of age, the power of the sorceress finds her, and she is lost in a blizzard.

Millennia later, archeaology student Owen is on the field trip of his life to a glacier dig. But what begins as a routine dig soon becomes much more when he discovers a perfectly preserved mummy in the ice—a mummy that returns to life and drags him into a millennias-old dispute.

For deeper in the glacier, dark magic is at work, waking the sorceress known as the Shadow Woman, and she will stop at nothing to end Talia’s life and destroy the clan once and for all. If Talia and Owen can’t stop her, she will destroy not only Talia but also Owen and the rest of the team. But if they can survive, they may just re-discover more than they could have ever hoped for.

This was a Top Ten Finalist for the Five Magic Spindles contest by Rooglewood Press.

And now, without further ado, what you’re all here for: the cover!

Isn’t it beautiful? (Image shows the cover for Freeze Thaw, mostly black with an Ice Age woman standing in the foreground and an aurora and waterfall in the dark background. The title looks like it is made of ice, and green sparkles surround it and the girl. The text around the title reads “Cover Reveal”, then “An archaeology student, an Ice Age princess, and an undead sorceress…” followed by the title, the author Selina J. Eckert, and the designer Dragonpen Designs. Surrounding text is on a backdrop of green ice.)

And, as promised, this was a finalist, so I HAD to share my finalist medal on SOMETHING:

(Image of the cover again, this one including a medallion that says “Five Magic Spindles Top Ten Finalist”)

Convinced?

You can preorder this beauty, or it will also be available through KU…this is my first book ever available through the program, so take advantage of it!

If you’re not quite ready to order, you can also add the book to Goodreads.

The story will be available on February 14 (just in time for Valentine’s Day). I can’t wait for you all to read it! 😀

~~~

PS: If you have read any of my previous books, I’d love it if you could leave a review on either Amazon or Goodreads (or your favorite book seller’s website!). It doesn’t have to be long and can say whatever you want! I’m so, so grateful for every review I get (even the critical ones), and I’d really appreciate any additional reviews. But even if you choose not to, I hope you continue to enjoy my stories! ❤

Cozy Stories

Looking for some warm fuzzies on a cold day? I got you covered.

I don’t know what it’s like where you are, but up here in Pennsylvania, it’s gotten pretty chilly this week! We even had our first snowstorm halfway through November. Crazy!

All that got me thinking. There is nothing I love better on a cold, blustery day than settling in snuggled up in a blanket with a steaming cup of something, be it coffee, tea, or hot chocolate, and a good book. Even better if the dog or cats come to hang out with me. So today, I want to give you a list of some of my favorite cozy, warm-fuzzy-inducing reads.

As a bit of a bonus, I’ll also include a list of movies for those days you just need to give your brain a break… read to the end to see those!

Cozy Reads

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
Series: It’s a standalone!
Why: Cath and Levi 4eva!
Genre: YA contemporary

Written in Red by Anne Bishop
Series: The Others book 1
Why: Meg and Simon and the entire Lakeside pack
Genre: Urban fantasy

Sunrise by Mike Mullin
Series: Ashfall book 3
Why: This series is a roller coaster, and it ends on such a high note of hope, you can’t help but feel warm and happy at the end! Also there’s so much snow, it seems appropriate for winter.
Genre: YA science fiction

The Martian by Andy Weir
Series: It’s a standalone!
Why: That ending… nothing like the feeling that we are all in this together.
Genre: Science fiction

Spice Bringer by H.L. Burke
Series: It’s a standalone!
Why: Niya and Jayesh and life. Be ready for the feels and the tears.
Genre: Fantasy

I Temporarily Do by Ellie Cahill
Series: Standalone!
Why: It’s adorable.
Genre: Contemporary/romance

A Chance for Sunny Skies by Eryn Scott
Series: What’s in a Name book 1 (but all can be read out of order)
Why: Sunny is adorable and her story is engaging and warm and full of feels. Honestly, every book by Eryn Scott is warm and fuzzy and fun.
Genre: Contemporary

Cozy Shorts

Kindred Spirits by Rainbow Rowell
Collection: None!
Why: such a great feeling of solidarity and nostalgia
Genre: YA contemporary

Blood in the Snow by Sarah Pennington
Collection: None, but part of the Magic Mirrors joint release
Why: Baili’s journey and the love story ❤
Genre: Fantasy

Cozy Flicks

Stardust
Why: It’s whimsical and magical and leaves you feeling good!
Genre: Fantasy

Meet the Robinsons
Why: It’s also whimsical, but it is encouraging and light and leaves you with a “we can do this” attitude! No movie makes me feel better at the end than this one.
Genre: Fantasy/scifi (kids)

Tangled
Why: Yeah, I know, more Disney, but Flynn and Rapunzel make me happy. This is one of my greatest pick-me-up movies!
Genre: Fantasy (kids)

Final Thoughts

These are just SOME of my favorite stories that evoke the warm fuzzies. I have a bunch more! But I figured this list is long enough for one post. 😉

Now that I’ve shared some of my favorites with you, I’d love to hear some of yours! What are your favorite books and movies for those cold winter days? Comment below!

The Transformative Power of Snow

Last night I had the first significant snowfall of the winter season.

My parents and grandparents already got to experience this, but because I live in southeastern PA, I don’t get to experience the same mountain weather as they do farther north.

There’s just something about the snow that makes winter seem a little more bearable. I was born in winter, but I can’t say it’s my favorite season (actually, fall is my favorite). It gets cold and miserable. There’s not much daylight to enjoy, which is a big deal to someone who already has low vitamin D from spending so much time in the lab. Everything looks gray and bleak and sad.

Until it snows.

Suddenly instead of gray and bleak and dark, everything is bright white and blue. The snow mutes the sounds, making the air peaceful and calm. The cold isn’t just miserable anymore; it’s crisp and fresh and invigorating. It’s like having a snow day as a kid all over again, and all I want is to watch the snow fall and make soup and hot chocolate and watch Disney movies, cuddled up on the couch with pets and loved ones. It’s filled with comfort and joy and excitement.

And all it took was a single snowfall.

I have been struggling to get back to work on my once-regular writing schedule, around my day job, relationships, and other obligations of course. And seeing the snow takes me right back to the last time I was obsessed with my stories, to another snowy season when my mind was entirely consumed by writing with every free moment.

I was still in grad school, and I lived close enough that every day I walked to and from the lab. Unfortunately that meant that no matter the weather I could make it in. So I would bundle up, pull on my tall boots, and trudge through the un-shoveled snow that was at least up to my knees.

But the whole time, I got to feel the crispness of the winter air, to enjoy the quiet that comes with snow. And let me tell you, that’s a rarity where I had lived. Few people were out and about, cars were scarce, and there was no pressure, since no one was waiting on me to get to school. And it was exactly the inspiration I needed for my work in progress at that time.

I was working on a story that involved a very snowy clime, and being in the snow made it easier to imagine being with my protagonist. Every step I took was another thought she had, another event she encountered. The snow was my inspiration and my encouragement to continue.

And now that I have snow again, I feel that familiar itch of creation. I want to create and write and build worlds and art and beauty. I want not only to write but to paint and draw and be consumed by creation. To be truthful, I don’t know how long it will last or if this will be what I need to get back in my groove. But for now, I’m going to run with it.

I hope the snow can push your inspiration, too.