Saturday, 12 December 2015

Christmas Trees and a Chance to Enter a $10 Amazon Gift Card Giveaway


I was thinking about what I could chat about and honestly, it didn’t take me long to come up with an idea—Christmas trees. Why Christmas trees? Well, because they are one of my (if not my most) favourite parts of Christmas. They’re also quite integral to my new book, For Want of a Christmas Miracle.
I love getting and decorating my tree. Trudging off in the snow to find a tree of the perfect size and shape. The whole family round, smiling and singing as we unpack the decorations, carefully placing each one reverently on the tree in just the perfect position. The strings of lights that twinkle beautifully…
Oh wait, no, that’s not how Christmas decorating goes in my house, that’s a scene from the films I gorge on at this time of year. I mean of course by the time December rolls around, in my head the decorating ritual goes like that, but in real life it goes much more like this;
·         Think about suggesting getting the tree—then remember last year’s arguments re: size, so wait until I have some free time.
·         Trundle off in the car to the garden centre. Gaze longingly at the over-priced Christmas trees with the perfect needles and formation, the Jimmy Choos of the tree world… then somehow tear myself away and go to the cheaper trees.
·         Spend a ridiculous amount of time weighing up the pros and cons of each tree until I finally settle on one that is a nice size and pretty good shape.
·         Spare one last longing glance at the Jimmy Choo trees and get my actual chosen tree netted so the nice bloke at the centre can fit it in the car. It bends a bit at the top but if you move the passenger seat back, it’s not too bad.
·         Get home, note it’s started raining, and wrestle tree from car. It looked a helluva lot easier when the garden centre chap put it in.
·         Take a deep breath, have a cup of tea, stick on Christmas carols and re-find lagging Christmas spirit.
·         Find Christmas tree base. Spend half an hour trying to fit tree into base before giving up and accepting the trunk is too wide for the stand. Find bucket.
·         Fill bucket with stones and earth, find old mat to put underneath it, manoeuvre tree into bucket and bucket into position.
·         Let go.
·         Notice the tree may be a tad too tall (the top bent at a right angle along the ceiling is the main clue); find scissors, lop off the top of the tree, and catch tree before it falls over.
·         Realise it was only balanced because of branches pressed against ceiling.
·         Use shoulder to balance tree whilst shifting it upright again. Utter curse words until it’s balanced, then back away slowly and pour a glass of Christmas cheer. It’s five o’clock somewhere.
·         Relocate scissors and carefully snip away netting. Watch the branches spring into a …really lopsided shaped triangle. Swear it didn’t look like that in the shop; bastards must’ve netted the wrong bloody tree.
·         Take another sip of drink.
·         Wrangle tree into an acceptable position. Hoover pine needles. Wrap bucket in festive paper. Get out decorations.
·         Sup Christmas cheer until the children get home ready to decorate tree. Feel mellower and nostalgic as decorations are lovingly unwrapped and remembered.
·         Remind children to spread decorations evenly and turn attention to lights.
·         Plug them in to check they work, fist pump when they do, unplug and start untangling them—pause only to stick on some Christmas music. Or muzak, as nobody else seems to appreciate King’s College Carollers.
·         Finish untangling lights and plug them in again. Realise they have stopped bloody working. Check 400 light bulbs to find the dodgy one.
·         Get them working and admire the children’s decorating (silently accepting the rearranging job that will need to take place to avoid all the red ornaments being in one place…)
·         Then remember lights should go on first…
·         Down more alcohol and start again.

Sound familiar anyone? Despite the lack of Hallmark in our decorating, my tree really is a part of Christmas I adore.
I hope you all have a wonderful holiday season and that you enjoy reading about Rhys and Toby’s Christmas miracle as much as I enjoyed writing it.


Olley White x


GIVEAWAY

Friday, 11 December 2015

Fancy being in with a chance to win a $10 Amazon gift card?



Here are some links to the blogs that have hosted me on my For Want of a Christmas Miracle blog tour. Follow them to read my guest posts and find out how to enter a rafflecopter giveaway for a $10 Amazon gift card. Hurry though... there's only two days left to enter!

The Blogger Girls
Bike Book Reviews
Sinfully Books
Two Chicks Obsessed With Books and Eye Candy

Huge thanks to all the blogs - they are amazing!

Olley White x


Monday, 7 December 2015

For Want of a Christmas Miracle by Olley White: Release Day *Squee* & Blog Tour Dates


It's here! Today is release day for my Christmas novella, For Want of a Christmas Miracle. I am so excited that it's out there n the big wide world and I hope you all enjoy reading it as much as I did writing it.

So..what's the story about?
When one down-on-his-luck gardener and one garden centre owner meet, neither could predict the attraction they’d feel towards each other. Toby is just about turning round the business he’d inherited from his dad, and it’s all going well—until a risk he took looks like it might not pay off. Rhys’s employment at Toby’s garden centre is temporary, just to cover the Christmas sales, and frankly he’d much rather be outside gardening. And avoiding Christmas.

When an accident means Toby can’t be at work at a crucial time, it’s time for Rhys to step up to the mark. But can the Christmas Scrooge make the difference required for the man he’s starting to love?



If this sounds like the kind of story you like to read, then here are some to buy links:
NineStar Press (NB: this is the publisher's site and in there points = money off a future purchase scheme, this is worth three points).
Amazon.co.uk
Amazon.com
Kobo

A couple of early reviews have said:
"Aww, this was so sweet, and christmassy, and cute, and lovely. Perfect with a cuppa and a Rich Tea biscuit."- Author RJ Scott
"Squeeeeeeee! *hugs Kindle* I am so ready to binge on holiday romances and this was the perfect start... 
...For Want of a Christmas Miracle had everything I love of about holiday romances. It was sweet, Christmas fluff, full of holiday cheer that gave me all sorts of warm fuzzies. *snuggles in with hot cocoa* "Goodreads reviewer, Breann 

Blog tour: 
07-Dec  - The Blogger Girls
08-Dec  - Bike Book Reviews
09-Dec  - Blog of Andrew Grey
10-Dec  - Sinfully Sexy
11-Dec  - Prism Book Alliance
12-Dec  - Blog of Dirk Greyson
13-Dec  - Two Chicks Obsessed with Books and Eye Candy 

Tuesday, 27 October 2015

NineStar Press and Ballet

Okay, so the two things are in no way related, but it was either that or me apologising (again)  for my lack of blogging. Beautiful dancing is way more interesting than my apologies.

Firstly, have you guys seen Sergei Polunin dancing to Hozier's Take Me to Church? Just in case any of you have been under a rock, I'm linking it here because this video (by David LaChapelle) is honestly the most beautiful thing I've seen on YouTube. The mix of talents is perfect, and Sergei's dancing is mesmerising. Don't take my word for it - have a look-see yourselves. It is stunning. Absolutely stunning.

Okay...so NineStar Press. What is it I hear you ask... well let me tell you. NineStar is a new GBLTQ publisher that launches in 26 days. I've had a look around the site and there are several books I'm already planning on purchasing. I completely recommend checking it out (if for nothing more than being in with a chance to win a book a day for a year).

I'm particularly excited because I've had a Christmas novella accepted by NineStar Press for publication. Hear that sound - that's me still squeeing! For Want of a Christmas Miracle is out on the 7th of December and is available to pre-order now!

I owe a huge thank you to my editor, Sam, for being amazing and easing me into the world of publishing gently. If she laughed at my silly questions she did it quietly so I didn't feel like a complete doofus. Thanks Sam. 


When one down-on-his-luck gardener and one garden centre owner meet, neither could predict the attraction they’d feel towards each other. Toby is just about turning round the business he’d inherited from his dad, and it’s all going well—until a risk he took looks like it might not pay off. Rhys’s employment at Toby’s garden centre is temporary, just to cover the Christmas sales, and frankly he’d much rather be outside gardening. And avoiding Christmas.

When an accident means Toby can’t be at work at a crucial time, it’s time for Rhys to step up to the mark. But can the Christmas Scrooge make the difference required for the man he’s starting to love?




Image copyright NineStar Press

This is hopefully not the last of Rhys and Toby so I hope you enjoy meeting them.

Take care,

Olley x

Thursday, 9 July 2015

The Quiet Within and The Best Man

Oh wow - I'm a slacking slacker who slacks when it comes to this blogging malarkey. So what news do I have to catch you up with...
Firstly, The Quiet Within is available as a download from the MM group on Goodreads. I hope to have it up on Smashwords, ARe, Amazon etc soon.

The whole experience was as amazing as last year, the whole team behind this event are amazing. I cannot imagine how many wine-fuelled man hours go into running this whole event! My thanks to them goes beyond words.

Secondly, I've not even mentioned the second prompt I was lucky enough to pick up, have I? Okay, so this is the prompt and prompt letter:

Dear Author,

What is our story? How did I fall for someone so different from me? All I know is he makes me laugh and he makes me feel more alive than I’ve ever felt.

Please have fun with the prompt and feel free to take it in whatever direction you would like. I would prefer something sweet, but it’s not a requirement. Please, nothing too kinky.

Thanks!

Maya

How great is that??

Well the story I've written for it is called The Best Man and it's been submitted, currently waiting the scrutiny of an editor. Here is the cover that little old me designed for it.


As soon as it's available I'll let you know.

Thanks to everyone who reads my stories and especially thanks for those who take time to review them, I really appreciate all opinions - good, bad and ugly, they all help me with my writing.

Olley xx

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Cover Reveal: The Quiet Within.

Wow - it really has been a while since I posted here! I just wanted to let you know I'm writing once again for the Goodreads M/M groups Don't Read in the Closet event this year. 

I absolutely adore the prompt I chose, submitted by Amanda, and Eoin adn Kai are slowly revealing their story to me. Here is my prompt and picture:

Dear Author,

Learning to depend on each other wasn't easy, but it has saved their lives more times than they can count. They didn't choose this life, but are making the best of necessity. The danger is always there, chasing just on their heels. It’s these tender moments that make it all worthwhile. The moments when the love shows through.

Sincerely,

Amanda



Isn't it great?? I'm 19k into this story now, which is titled The Quiet Within and I am really excited to be able to reveal the wonderful cover art, designer Natasha Snow has made for it. I am so in love with the cover - I just hope the story matches up!!

And here it is...


...good, huh?
Anyway, I've got to get back to writing because my May 1st deadline is rushing full steam towards me! I'll keep you all updated. 

Olley x


Thursday, 1 January 2015

Happy 2015!





OlleWhitxxxx


Wow, 2015...where the heck does time go? I just wanted to take a quick minute to thank anyone and everyone who supported my writing in 2014. For me it was the year of dipping my toe into publishing waters. Self-published, but the various stories I have out there have been read by more people than I ever imagined. It kind of blows my mind really when I think about the numbers of people who have read my words. It's not just my sister anymore!

More than that, it is amazing the time people take to review and comment on my work. I so appreciate this - obviously good reviews have me grinning from ear-to-ear, even if they are always received with a Really? They're talking about my work? at the back of my mind. I'll blame it on the Brit in me, the one who finds accepting praise hard. (Hey, on my driving test I started telling the instructor all the reasons why I thought he should have failed me. It just doesn't come naturally to me!)

It's also the reviews that say This story wasn't for me, that I appreciate too. Honest feedback, however it comes, is absolutely priceless to me. Knowing readers thoughts is a great place to start improving my writing. I'll always write like me - but if several reviews say x, y or z, then I know I need to seriously think about those areas.

Whoa - so, rambling aside, I'm really just saying thank you everyone. This time last year I wouldn't have believed I could have achieved what I have. This year my goal is to actually send something to a publisher...eek! Wish me luck. And on that note I'm putting here my book related resolutions. I never really have set out resolutions before - I generally just have some vague notion at the back of my mind of what I would like to do, a vague notion usually completely forgotten a week into the year. So here, for me and for you, are my seven intended resolutions:

  1. To write everyday. Be it a little or a lot - even a little adds up!
  2. To finish my two WIPS.
  3. To send at least one thing to a publisher. By one thing, I mean a full length novel.  
  4. To enter Love's Landscapes again - best time ever - with both a prompt and as an author.
  5. To read everything on my ereaders before purchasing new stuff....(this one is probably going to be  a complete FAIL!)
  6. To carry on reading and reviewing and sharing my love of books at BMBR (hey unicorns,!) And to spread the word of authors I love. 
  7. To keep this and my Lori Powell blog updated more regularly!
Okay - so all of you, I hope 2015 brings everything you wish for and is full of love, happiness and good books.

Love and hugs and hugest thanks,


Olley x