Friday, December 18, 2009

Waking Up With Dragons:

To all, I had the great fortune of entering a short story contest run by the wonderful Michelle Rowen (see; she rocks). And I won 3rd place! Hooray!

The story will be up on her site on the 22nd. But I can post it here now. Still, go see Michelle's site, because she is amazing. So here is my story, called "Waking Up with Dragons."

Darkness was falling fast. Already, the pinks and golds of sunset were giving way to the blues and purples of the coming night, the shadows made thicker by the mountains and leaving the desert to grow cold without the warmth of the sun. As per usual, the sun must always surrender to the night.
Jenna Flores watched the coming night with a wistful heart. It had been two years, nearly three when she counted precisely, since she had moved away from her hometown with her husband. She missed her family and friends back home. More than that, she missed the companionship of her coven, especially on Yule. It was one of her favorite holidays, and celebrating as a solitary was not nearly as fulfilling.
Glancing towards her husband Robert, who leaned against a nearby boulder and was pitching rocks into the underbrush, she smiled slightly. He was a good companion, but he was far more in tune with the supernatural than she was. He was a good guardian, but she needed others to help her practice her craft, not just to advise her.
Heaving a sigh, she called, “You're going to make the animals angry.”
Robert looked at her and grinned. “No I won't. It's too cold for them to come above ground now.”
Jenna just shook her head as Robert turned to look up at the sky. “Any dragons hanging about tonight?” she asked.
Getting to his feet, Robert nodded, his eyes following a movement that she could not. “Yup. Seamus is hanging around right now. He's busy complaining that it's too cold.”
“Why is he here? He never hangs around for rituals, not even on the sabbats.”
Shrugging, Robert strode easily towards her, shoving his hands in his pockets. “He promised he'd be here tonight. Besides, he likes it when you do your rituals.”
“Because I'm so entertaining?”
Robert just grinned. “There is that.”
Glowering, Jenna said, “He's never going to let me forget about calling the wrong elements, is he.”
“Nope. He's actually laughing right now.”
A part of her was irritated. Not only was she a struggling practitioner, but the fact that Robert had conversations with invisible dragons that she could not, and had never been able to, see, drove her half-mad.
“Seamus, if I could see you right now, I would--”
“Honey? You know you don't want to taunt a dragon.”
The irritation boiled over. “It's not fair, you know! I've been practicing for four years now, and I'm nowhere near as open to all this as you are! You got stoned once, and bam! You talk to dragons and plants and can hop across different dimensions. Me? I don't hear a peep from the plants anymore, and certainly nothing from the gods.”
Robert approached his wife, and gently put his hands on her shoulders. “Jenna, it's okay,” he said comfortingly. “I know that you struggle sometimes, and whenever you don't practice constantly you have to regain the footing you had. It's okay that your mind isn't as open. It'll happen sometime. I know it will.”
Jenna watched him regretfully. “I don't know if it will, Robert. I mean, I try and try, but there are times when I think I'm just not meant for this.”
A smile touched his lips. “It's Yule, hon. I know you love this holiday. Don't you feel the energy around here? Everything's antsy for you to practice tonight. You know what you're doing. Let's celebrate here, and then we can go back home and feast. We got that great bottle of wine to look forward to.” He paused, searching her face.
“You are meant for this, Jenna. You know you are. Your mind will open up when it's ready to. I promise.”
Sighing heavily, Jenna nodded, accepting the kiss that he placed on her forehead. “All right. Let's get this going before the coyotes come out.”
“That's my girl.”
As Robert moved back to his boulder, Jenna took another deep breath and closed her eyes. Emptying her mind, she let the calm of the desert fill her. No cars going by, no helicoptors, no screaming people. Just her and the cacti and the small scurrying creatures seeking shelter from the night. A peace filled her as she paced her breathing, letting the energy of the earth creep up from her feet and slowly fill every cell of her being. At once she felt connected, in tune with Mother Earth and every living creature in the near area.
Smiling to herself, Jenna took another breath and slowly walked her circle, chanting more to herself than out loud as she drew the protective circle. With each footstep she felt the energy rise, creating a safe bubble around her from the energy of the earth. Something like static electricity rushed through her as the circle was completed, and it felt as if a door was smashed open in her mind.
Half-falling over, Jenna staggered as white light filled her mind. There was timelessness and connectedness and a rush of life. More than that, she could feel the essence of joy in everything around her. It felt like home, and made tears fill her eyes.
“Jenna? Are you all right?”
Fighting against the sob that rose in her chest, Jenna laughed. “Yeah. I think I just—I think I woke up.”
“Open your eyes.”
Slowly, Jenna looked up.
And found herself staring at a four-foot long scaled dragon's face from mere feet away.
“Merry Yule,” a booming voice echoed in her mind. “It's about damn time.”

Sunday, December 13, 2009


Happy Holidays everybody!

It's that magical time of year when everyone gets into a frenzy for gift-giving, and no one knows what to buy. So what should you get?

Why, pick up a copy of my book, of course! It's a great gift because you know the author, it's a great read for anyone who needs something new to read, and you know that you want to spread the word!

No, really. My book would be a great gift for the people on your list because it's a smooth read, absorbing, and a great study of the time period. So says Romantic Times magazine. And several reviews. If I haven't already, I can post later on.

So remember: you can order my book from Eloquent Books; Amazon; Borders, and Barnes and Noble. Send them to me, and I will sign them for you! (Just send a SASE along with it.) Even makes a great after-holidays gift!

Much love and holiday spirit to you.


Sunday, October 11, 2009

Ah the reviews... such reviews

Welcome once more!

I will once again take the opportunity to persuade everyone to head to their local bookstore and pick up the November issue of RT Book Reviews, as the review of "What Might Have Been" is in it! I have yet to pick it up myself, so I'm anxious and nervous to see what was said.

So go forth and see.

And also, thanks to you lovely people who have posted reviews online. *kisses*


Thursday, September 10, 2009

Sales: myth, reality, or dream? You decide

So I just checked my sales figures. 13 books sold since it was released. Yays! 13 beats 0!

I figure once I hit the marketing hard, i.e. have time and a smidgen of money to put towards it, then those numbers will keep going up.

So mom, stop asking me when I'm getting paid. I make money when you buy the book. Buy my book. Support your daughter.

In other news, I have TONS of research to do for one of the (four) other books I'm someday going to finish. You know, it's funny how writing one book makes you want to write and finish more. I love that my book is out there. Not in stores yet, but it will be. I love that you can Google me. That's awesome.

What are my next projects? A spectacular array of mixed media: a young woman's sojourn to England and her drunken escapades; a failtacular vampire slayer; a plethora of short stories wrapped up in one handy handbasket, and my latest brain child: a thriller involving--come on, if you know me, then this is a no-brainer--government conspiracy.

So, lots to do, things to write, head to explode. And someday, it shall be ME on the author tour, doing fun updates from different cities. Someday...

So for the whole 8 of you, and Ash, lots of love, till next time. Which is strangely coming more and more often.

Remember: I love pasta because my house is made of bricks. Circular logic has no place here.


Wednesday, September 9, 2009

I talk and talk to an empty room

It's very quiet here. No response, no comments... Is anyone out there? Not even my family follows me. Of course you all have lives to lead. I'm no big name. Yet.

Wait for it. Someday I'll have a name. Mud, probably. Or maybe I'll slip back into the woodwork.


Sunday, September 6, 2009

Head to your local newstand or bookstore

Good morning, everyone,

It's time to head to wherever magazines are sold! The September issue of RT Book Reviews (#307) is currently available, and there is a lovely little spot in the magazine for yours truly under the New Author Spotlight.

That's right, my first magazine exposure. Huzzah! I could be mature about it, but come on, that's freaking cool.

So tell everyone! Jabber to the clerk as you buy it that you know me and are going to purchase the book immediately. Then ask the clerk when the book will be in stores, and to tell the higher ups that it needs to be in store IMMEDIATELY.

So go forth, my minions! Enjoy!

And p.s., for those of you who actually do read this blog, I will update more in the future. I am currently sitting on THREE plot bunnies and will have to figure out which on is going to be the numero uno priority.

Live long and profit,

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Good reports

Hey, all,

It's been a busy two months but I am finally updating again :) So far I've gotten some good feedback on my book. Here's a nice little email that was sent to my publisher:

Dear Ms. Mater,
I thought your book was excellently researched and included many fun facts within its story. Your writing style is beautiful, easy to read, and creates easily visible pictures. Though I am not one much for romance novels myself, there was enough surrounding plot to keep me interested enough to be eager to continue to pick up your work every time I was forced to put it down. I sense there may be some personal reflections in your novel, and believe those to only make it a stronger work. Congratulations, and I look forward to seeing more work from you in the future.

Best regards,

Mary Norland

And a lovely note on my myspace page from Ms. Sterbenz:

hey read your book i totally loved it couldnt put it down now reading it for the secound time lol

So thanks guys for your kind words!

I also have awesome news: You can look for the September issue of "RT (Romantic Times) Book Reviews". Me and my little book have a nice little feature space in there! Nothing huge, but it's also getting reviewed. Professionally. *trembles in my sandals* And there will be the true test. The lovely folks at RT Reviews, though, have been super wonderful and friendly; I can only hope they'll be kind in the review.

So make sure you check that out! Usually the mag is found IN the Romance section in your bookstore, so there.

Remember: until I can afford lots of great publicity, you guys are my greatest asset. Tell everyone you know to pick up a copy! I'm working to get the book in stores, so hopefully that will happen soon.



Tuesday, June 2, 2009

I am on finally!

For all you lucky people who have been waiting for Borders to carry my book, your wait is over! It is now listed on the website! Hooray! So stop on by the site, check out the book. Picture and description are pending, but they should be up in a couple of weeks. If you still don't know much about my book, then you obviously haven't been checking out my updates, and now is a good time to do it.

So follow...[search%3A+17%2Cparse%3A+25]&searchData={productId%3Anull%2Csku%3Anull%2Ctype%3A0%2Csort%3Anull%2CcurrPage%3A1%2CresultsPerPage%3A25%2CsimpleSearch%3Atrue%2Cnavigation%3A0%2CmoreValue%3Anull%2CcoverView%3Afalse%2Curl%3Arpp%3D25%26view%3D2%26all_search%3DMargaret%2BMater%26type%3D0%26nav%3D0%26simple%3Dtrue%2Cterms%3A{all_search%3DMargaret+Mater}}&storeId=13551&sku=1606935925&ddkey=http:SearchResults

Happy buying. Tell your friends. Tell your stores to carry the book!

Loves to all.

Friday, May 1, 2009

My book is available at these places now

When it comes to me and my sales, I don't care where they come from! So I am happy to announce that my book is now available on the Barnes and Noble site at this link:

And at at this link, though technically not in stock yet through Amazon:

I'm not gonna lie: searching my name and finding my book pop up is probably the coolest thing in the world. Goosebumps, actually. It's very surreal, and I love it.

So thanks to you who have already purchased. Feel free to do some rating and reviews on me when you can. And I mean this: I want to know what you think when you've read the book. Reviews help me be a better writer.

In the meantime, have a super day!


Tuesday, April 28, 2009

What Might Have Been: Ready to Order

Hello, everybody!

Now is the moment we've been waiting: the book is ready to order!

Just received word from the publisher that it is a Go. So, this is it. Time to find out what the hype is about.

Head on over to this site:

So you can buy direct from AEG, my lovely and wonderful publisher, or you can wait until it is available in your local store. Can't tell for certain which will be faster right now, so I leave it in your capable hands.

You can check out the beautiful cover art too. My sneakiness has paid off. I hope you all love the cover as much as I do!

Once your purchase your copy, then tell every single person you know to go buy it too.

And by the way, if any of you are involved in groups that would like a speaker or would like me to come introduce myself and my book, let me know! This is me advertising myself:)

Thank you for your support, guys! I love you all!


Saturday, April 25, 2009

The Best Part

On the 23rd, I got the best moment of my life: I got to hold my book in my hands for the first time. It was such an incredible feeling. I've literally dreamed about that moment for years, when I would get to see my work in print, see my name on a bookcover.

I am utterly thrilled with how the book turned out. Right now I am checking it for any print errors, but so far so good. If everything is good to go, then the book is going to be ready for sales and all sorts of fun marketing stuff will commence.

From what my publisher was telling me, they are looking to do the newsletter, of course. There's also supposedly an author video, a website, and some other things in the works too. It feels very strange to know that very soon my name will be out there, and at some point people may recognize it.

I am constantly torn between wanting to show off the cover and let it be a surprise for everyone. I'm immensely proud of this book, so it is difficult to decide.

I've had a couple of people ask me, why use your real name? Why not use a pen name? I did consider briefly using a pen name, but then I realized this: It's my work. It's been my brainchild for years now. Success or fail, I want it to be mine completely. Let everyone know that it is my work. And even though there are going to be people who don't like, there will be people who do like it.

This is my biggest challenge yet. I've always been fairly protective of my work, a little self-conscious of it, afraid to know what people think. I am officially entering the larger world where I am open to criticism, praise, and all the joy of the literary world. Big step for me.

Soon enough, my book will be on shelves. I want to tell everyone! Get excited with me!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Closer and closer

The closer and closer we near to release, the more excited I am. And I am super excited to tell you about an offer that's been presented to me.

My publisher is offering to do a newsletter, sent direct to your email, that would be about me. IT would include my biography, the press release of my book, the cover art, and fun little tid bits. Sounds spiffy, right?

Right! Well, if I can find 200 folks who'd be interested in receiving the newsletter, I don't have to pay a dime! There's no spamming, no selling of anyone's email, just the one straight up shot, and then you can choose to sign up for further emailings.

If you are interested, then just send me a note with your email address, and I'll pass it to my publisher, AEG. They are awesome folks, and have been treating me great.

So if you want to keep up on all the happenings with me and my book, this is a great chance.

Thanks for reading and have a great night!


Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Exciting Progress

Good eeeevening, all. Yes, it's been awhile since I've posted. In truth, I have no idea if anyone is even reading this yet. After all, no one really knows me yet. Soon, though... soon my name will be out there, to love or to hate or to ignore. And you know what? I actually can't wait for that. I don't look forward to people telling me that I suck. But I still relish the idea of someone knowing my name enough to say "Oh, that person. I know that name." In whichever context it may be.

A couple of weeks ago I was able to see the final cover work for the book, and I have to say that I love it. It's unique, it's very definitive of the story, it's beautiful. It was designed by a lovely woman named Jamie at Eloquent Books. It was pretty much love at first sight. Once she designed it, I loved it, and it was the first design. Hasty? Perhaps. But honestly, I can't imagine a better layout or design.

At present, I am awaiting the proof copy of the book to look over for any errors. With any luck (and I do cross my fingers) within 4-6 weeks we'll begin marketing. Yay! I can only imagine what lies ahead in those waters. I know there's a press release being formed, an author video is supposed to get put together, and my name will officially be getting ready to be released. It's daunting; I don't deny that. Especially for someone who's always been naturally shy.

Well, time to leave all that behind. The writing world is not the place for the timid.

I am very excited about the progress on the book. I check over the last copy that went into the publisher, and worry about every line. I recognize quite a few different paths and plotlines I could have followed, or added. But really, I am satisfied with how it turned out. I can't wait to see it in a book, a real book. This is the giddiness it elicits in me.

Well, until next time, gentle readers.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

The Finer Points

Good day, all!

So at the moment, I have sent off all the contacts I could think of for press, media, TV, etc., so the marketing folks at the publisher can send out a press release. I get to proof it and in the meantime, if I think of anymore contacts, send those off too :)

The wonderful folks at Strategic Book Publishing/ AEG are fabulous. From the moment I saw the cover design that the wonderful woman in the art department came up with, I knew I was dealing with competent and original people. I have nothing but good things going on with this book deal. I often wonder if I will be able to open up one of the many book flyers and see my name and book title soon. I can't wait to find out what the release date will be. Once I know, all of you will know.

I've been asked a couple of times, why did you choose to write about Tombstone?

And here's a couple of answers: The time period in which the book takes place was such a chaotic time in America, and in Arizona especially. It was a time of great change, or at least approaching change. From the aftermath of the Civil War to the dawn of the new century, things were changing all over the country. In that little corner of the Southwest, it was still a rebellious, troublesome place.

It was full of colorful characters whom people still debate about. There's a plethora of information on some individuals, and yet almost nothing on others. I try to flesh out a little bit on some of the folks, like the Earp brothers and Doc Holliday. Men like Billy Clanton and his brothers, Ike and Phin, are almost lost in the shuffle. Curly Bill Brocius, John Ringo, John Behan... There is a lot of debate on these men. Some say they were merely cold-blooded killers. A few resources say that Curly Bill was a boisterous, fun-loving man who provoked trouble as almost a joke. Some say that John Ringo rarely pulled a trigger, and was a quiet, reserved gentleman who fell in with the outlaws.

I especially had fun fleshing out the Earp women, Josephine, Allie, Mattie, Louisa, and Bessie. They were just as much a part of the infamous town as their men were. The only lady I was sad to leave out was Kate Elder, Doc Holliday's lady friend. In earlier drafts, there were a few good scenes with her. Unfortunately, as the story changed, Kate had to become a sidenote. For a really intriguing story about her, however, I highly recommend "Doc Holliday's Woman," by Jane Claudia Coleman.

It's hard not to find this fascinating. The town of Tombstone still thrives on this one incident in history: the shootout that happened near the O.K. Corral. It didn't even occur inside the actual corral, yet became a legend, a stamp of what the Old West was about. Many people still don't realize that there were so many factors that led up to the fight, from a deal gone sour between Wyatt Earp and Ike Clanton, to Wyatt's political ambitions crossing paths with John Behan's.

So your book is about the O.K. Corral? you may ask.

Not so! My book does bring up some of the possible reasons for it, but it is far a tale solely on that infamous seconds-long shootout. I only bring it up because one of the questions Deanna, the heroine, has to face is: how would you deal with letting history unfold as it already has?

So there are my deep thoughts for the day. I look forward to bringing you all more gems of information soon.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

What you might like to know

Good day, all. I hope everyone's had a fantastic weekend. Please remember: show the people closest to you that you love them every day of the year. You don't need just one day to do that.

So I have had some ask me, what exactly is your book about? Why should I read it? Will it be interesting to me?

Well, I will tell you what it is about. You should read it because I have worked very hard for many years to finish this, and I am confident that it is an enjoyable, engaging story. Want to escape for a little bit? Read my book! Will it be interesting to you? I can only hope so. I say with utter confidence that the plot was interesting enough for me to keep working until it was finished, and now that it is done, I am very satisfied. I think you will be too.

"What Might Have Been" is the story of a young woman named Deanna. She works in an art museum but has always had a great love of history, which she shares with her longtime friend, Ariel. Ariel works for a very high profile technology corporation which focuses on making advancements in all manner of departments.

When Ariel shares her latest project with her friend, Deanna unwittingly becomes the experiment in this new field: time travel. A lab accident sends Deanna back in time to 1881, Tombstone, Arizona Territory.

When she reaches the boomtown, Deanna realizes that she may be stuck there for some time, and must therefore make arrangements to survive. Soon enough, she comes into contact with two of the key elements of the town at the time: the Earp Brothers, Virgil, Wyatt and Morgan, and the Cowboys, a renegade group of thieves, rustlers and killers who banded together in the lawless territory.

She catches the eye of wild and reckless Cowboy, Billy Clanton, who is fated to die in the shootout near the O.K. Corral, and the younger Earp brother, Morgan. Struggling to survive in a time that is foreign and dangerous, Deanna tries to blend in and change as little as possible. But as time passes and the danger rises each day, she finds there is only one person she can turn to for help: the handsome young lawman, Morgan.

The book is filled with references to local stores, historical figures, and lovely little facts that came out in my research. It's romance, adventure, and history all rolled into one. I have had the pleasure of traveling to Tombstone quite a few times through the years, and each time I learn something new. I hope that anyone who reads the book will be inspired to learn more about the fascinating time that has sparked so much curiosity and speculation. Facts and fiction are able to intermingle; the separation of the two is just as interesting.

There you have it, folks! I hope that you like the premise. I tried to give as much as possible without giving everything out.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Fortuitous Beginnings

Welcome, all, to my first ever blog!

For those of you who know me already, hello! For those of you who don't, welcome, and allow me to introduce myself.

My name is Margaret Mater. I am a first time author whose debut novel, "What Might Have Been," is in in the final stages and preparing for release. It is a romance novel with a twist: how would you adjust if you were accidentally sent back in time? Would you fit right in, go galavanting and exploring without recourse? Or would you realize that the space time continuum is a delicate thing, that your presence is a violation, and interfering in anything could cause drastic changes?

Well, that's a small sample of what my book is about. I am trying to offer an alternative vision of how a modern woman would behave when faced with a time completely different from her own, and that she has to face the regular trials of survival just like everyone else.

Before I get too deep into my book, allow me to share a little about myself. I'm 29, I live in Arizona with my husband, four year old son, and two psychotic cats, one of whom thinks he's a pigeon and the other thinks she is the boss. We've been here for about a year and a half. We both originated in Kansas. My husband, Chris, was actually my boss about 10 years ago, though we never started dating till about 3 years ago.

I was actually born and raised in Moundridge, and then Newton, both small towns where everybody knows your name. I grew up with my dad, Bob, mom Celia, older sister Mary, and younger brother Mike. We have always had cats, which my dad always lamented.

I love books. Have always been an avid reader. I've been writing since grade school, and have kept it up over the years. Some of my favorite authors include J.R.R. Tolkien, Laurell K. Hamilton, Julie Kramer, Stephenie Meyer, and many more.

So that is a bit about me. I will introduce a little more of myself at a time, and share more on my book. I am so excited about it, and I hope everyone will get excited too!

Until later,