A New Audio Book Release is Here

Dying to Return Audio

Piper Willow’s adventure in the afterlife continues as she struggles to discover who she is and what is expected of her. Faced with decisions that could change everything, she must weigh her desire to be with the ones she has come to love, or satisfy her curiosity and find out what lies beyond her world with someone new. What Piper experiences and the choices she makes could not only alter the delicate inner workings of the Station, but the delicate balance that Piper has managed to maintain inside herself. In the end, will it all be worth it?

– Click this AUDIBLE link for more info –


About the Narrator

Julia Farmer is a narrator and voice over artist in Chicago, IL, with an obsession for RPG video games and detective/espionage stories.  She’s also an experienced improv actor, having trained at Chicago’s famed Second City school and iO Theatre.  Outside of her narration work, you can hear her as the voice of Sarita in Telltale Games’ The Walking Dead: Season 2 video game.

About the Studio

Actors Audio is a division of Cerny/American Creative dedicated to producing audiobooks and audio drama. Actors Audio gives listeners a chance to hear quality books narrated by Chicago’s talented voice actors. They produced the award winning audio Bible “The Word of Promise” starring Jim Caviezel and Richard Dreyfuss, as  well as numerous “Twilight Zone” radio dramas.


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Is there a ‘right’ way to write about suicide?

Since the first book of the Station series was released, the feedback was overwhelmingly positive, even though one of the main themes in the story is about suicide. How did that happen? Well, a year ago I wouldn’t have been able to answer that question, but after writing two more books in the story, plus three novelettes about a handful of other characters, I think it’s possible to answer that question now.

Writing is about fleshing out a story that readers will relate to. And writers don’t always have a choice about what story comes to them. With Dying to Forget, that’s exactly what happened to me. See, the year before starting the book, one of my beloved aunts committed suicide. Some might think that with her troubled past (and several failed attempts to kill herself) that it wouldn’t have been a shock to our family. But it so was. I will never forget the day that one of my other aunt’s called and told me. I stood in my hallway wailing. To be honest, I never thought it would actually happen. Teresa had a laugh that would fill an entire room. She just had a…presence that commanded attention, and our family will forever miss her. I began dreaming about her, and thinking about her often. ‘What would her advice be?’ ‘What would she say about that…?’ And it really did feel like she was the voice inside my head for a while there. It was my way of holding onto her, I suppose.

When Piper Willow was born, it was a combination of my real life experiences, combined with insane things my imagination does while I sleep, that created her story. See, I understand what it’s like to lose someone to suicide. I know what it’s like to be there when they’ve attempted it and failed, and they are locked up in a mental hospital on watch. I know the depression. The pain. The sorrow. I also know what it’s like to be left wondering ‘why’. And the guilt that quickly follows that question.

Writing about suicide isn’t easy, regardless of your writing abilities, style, or experience. But it absolutely must be done. How come, you might ask? Because it happens. Every day. Our youths are at risk, but even in the face of such a constant multi-media way of living, there are still hundreds, thousands of children and young adults (and yes, older adults, too) that are depressed, lost, hurting. So many souls that feel hopeless. I’ve talked to so many beautifully damaged people since writing Dying to Forget, and each has a common denominator – a common thread that bounds them all together: they keep all that pain and depression inside. They hide it. In our culture, it’s taboo to talk about mental illness, depression and yes, suicide. It shouldn’t be, especially because I know for a fact, that many of us have been there. Perhaps this is why some readers relate to Piper Willow; she’s been there and hit bottom, and wants nothing more than to help others from the same fate.

It’s time for us to step-up and pay attention to our kids. Let them know that it’s okay to feel like shit, but that tomorrow might be better. And if not tomorrow, the day after that. The struggle is real, but it’s worth it. Life is worth fighting for. None of us are perfect; Piper Willow isn’t either. She’s meant to be a flawed, damaged, imperfect and confused teen. Because that’s human. In a story full of death and pain, there has to be second chances and hope. That’s what I’d like readers to take away from the Station books. Hope. It’s there for all of us, even those who feel totally alone. In the real world, there’s a Piper Willow, a Ryan Burke, a Mallory, a Kerry-Anne, a Sloan Nash, and a Niles Abbott out there trying to survive. And they all need you. They need me. They need us all.

So, is there a right way to write about suicide? No, I don’t think so. Because suicide isn’t pretty. It’s raw, it’s painful, it’s real, and above all, it’s final. With tact, emotion and compassion, a writer can pull it off. I think it should be talked about more, written about more, so that it’s not so taboo. We can’t pretend this doesn’t happen. Society is not perfect, and our kids aren’t either. But you know what, that’s okay. Perfect is over-rated.

For all those who feel broken, lost and hurting – you aren’t alone, you really aren’t. The sun rose for you this morning. Your second chance is here…now. Take it, and get the support and help you need. Life is waiting for you.

Motivational Monday – QOTD

Wednesday Writing Tip – Be Your Own Boss, At Your Own Risk

Being a writer is one of the best jobs in the world. It’s my dream career, and I can’t imagine doing anything else. But there are pros and cons to being your own boss in the Indie-writing world, all which can make or break ya.

Here’s my Top 20 list of Pros and Cons of Being Your Own Boss. Enjoy it with coffee, if you’d like. Or vodka. I won’t judge.


TOP 20 PROS

  • No Supervisor (unless your editor is waiting for the manuscript)
  • No Commute (unless you write away from home often)
  • No formal work schedule, or clocking in and out
  • No penalties for being late or calling in sick
  • No uniforms required. Or washed hair. Or makeup. Or clothes at all, for that matter.
  • No formal degrees needed
  • Introverts welcome
  • Procrastinators welcome
  • Multi-tasking dragon trainers, unicorn riders and Middle Earth trail guides always needed
  • Ego inflation automatically included for all book awards won
  • Tax write-offs for travel. And coffee. And printer ink.
  • Knowledge gained in spelling, editing, formatting and marketing
  • Mastering of ‘Internet Research’. Followed by, Mastering of panic-mode ‘Clear Browsing History’
  • Constant practice in the Art of Humility
  • Expansive knowledge gained in caffeinated coffee and tea products. Also in chocolate. Or hard liquor.
  • Paying bills with writing income
  • Feeling accomplished and successful
  • Making friends within the writing community
  • Being stalked online by readers
  • Spending more time at home with family and pets.

TOP 20 CONS

  • No Supervisor (you’re on your own to figure everything out)
  • No Days Off (if not writing, you’re thinking about writing – 24/7)
  • No formal work schedule
  • No employee benefits (health insurance, dental insurance, office romance possibilities or water cooler gossip)
  • Showering may become so sporadic that the neighbors notice
  • Introverts welcome (being alone full-time does bad things to the mind)
  • Procrastinators welcome (an Achilles Heel for some writers)
  • Insomnia
  • Ego inflation can reach dangerously high levels. Friends might be lost. Family might move out. The dog might even run away.
  • Self-Employment tax
  • Knowledge gained on spelling, editing, formatting and marketing can create madness. And broken laptops due to constant head-banging.
  • Weight Gain. Also, Flat-Ass Syndrome
  • Bad reviews are guaranteed
  • Hearing at every social event for the rest of eternity, ‘You’re a writer? Have I read anything of yours?’
  • Addiction to any, or all of the following is expected: Social Media, checking email at least ten times a day, hard alcohol, chocolate, junk food in general, really comfortable pens, notebooks and Forensic Files
  • Constantly checking online for pirated work. And laptop sales.
  • Feeling accomplished and successful is almost always followed by moments of self-loathing and self-doubt
  • Meeting crazy people within the writing community
  • Being stalked online (or in person) by readers
  • Spending less time with family and pets because writing consumes everything

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You’ll earn some good Karma.

It’s Almost Here!

I’ve been saying for months that I need to clean up the print version of Dying to Forget and reformat it, update the cover to match the newer ebook, etc… well I finally started working on this a few weeks ago. Look what’s almost ready!!

As soon as I proof the print copy, you’ll be able to grab yourself one! Dying to Remember and Dying to Return will also be available soon! YAY!

Happy Tuesday!