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Monday, April 20, 2015

Sutton Shields (Guest Post + Giveaway)
Click the banner to go to the full schedule for Indie Girl April!

I have worked with Sutton on many occassions.  She is amazing and one of the
most sweet and fun people I know.  Katrina is a character that you hate to love
and I hope that you enjoy this post! Don't forget to enter the giveaway at the end
of the post :)

Guest Post

Meet The Merbitch

It’s no secret I’m a mama bear to my characters. Due to a seemingly endless stint as a single gal—seriously, my non-existent love life has out-dried the dreaded dating ‘dry spell’—my maternal need found its outlet in my characters, turning them into ink and paper babies. Well, except for Jex—the naughty, Aussie sorta-angel. He would be more like a bad boy book boyfriend. That’s totally normal, right? Maybe don’t answer that.

Good or bad, naughty or nice, these characters are my family; I reckon that’s true of all writers. In fact, some characters have been in my life for many years.

One such character is Katrina, the resident merbitch of The Merworld Water Wars series. Given her level of awfulness, it might surprise you to know that she wasn’t always a merbitch.

Soon after starting at a brand new school, in a brand new state, in a brand new part of the country, I experienced my first taste of bullying. It was on the really ugly side of rancid. Mom, like all moms, channeled her inner Mary Poppins and somehow knew what was going on before I had the chance to tell her (or sob in her arms).

One day, I came home from hell…er…school to find a white box sitting on my bed. Inside was a wood carving of a mermaid, my very favorite supernatural being. She had a purple fin, black hair, red lipstick, and carried a red comb and mirror. To those who’ve read my crazy books: Sound familiar? I named her Katrina. This was years before Hurricane Katrina destroyed a beloved part of the country that was like my family’s backyard.

The presence of this little mermaid did exactly what Mom had hoped: I was acting like myself again—happy and silly. Mom told me she found Katrina in a little shop in town. She thought Katrina looked “tough” and might help me be a little stronger. We hung her in my bathroom so I could see her every morning before heading to school to face whatever they had in store.

So, without further ado, please meet the first Katrina and the inspiration for Katrina Zale:

She’s pretty old now. Her paint is fading in places and there are some dents and chips. She even lost her comb somewhere along the way, but she never lost that mer-meanie look, at least that’s what I called it as a kid. Still, I always figured she watched over me, stupid as it sounds.

The bullying may not have stopped over the years, but I eventually grew more resilient, and I credit the start of that resiliency to my mom and little Katrina.

I’m not sure why on earth I turned something that helped me into a bullying baddie character. Maybe I always kept some subconscious connection between the carving and bullying that I never could quite let go (I hear ya, Elsa, I hear ya). Or maybe in some roundabout way, I did it because I knew Marina (my main character and kind of my paper mini-me) could handle Katrina the bully. Or maybe I owe wood-carving-Katrina an apology. Who knows? Whatever the reason, I’m sure Freud or Jung or Frasier Crane would have a field day.

Though the mer-meanie became the merbitch, it’s only on paper—after all, Katrina the wood carving has stayed with me all these years and still hovers nearby to this day.

About Sutton

I'm a dreamer, believer in the unbelievable, and author of The Merworld Water Wars series: FINNED (Wave One), OVERFALLS (Wave Two), and RIFTED (Wave Three), with two more 'waves' to follow.

Hook (pun totally intended): "Take a fish-phobic girl, divide her by one hot merman, add a splash of his crazy ex-merbitch, and you get one stinky school year."

I'm a handbag-loving gal who LOVES to watch sports--football, baseball, basketball, NASCAR, you name it. I take being a fan very seriously. ;)

One thing I love most is trying to make people smile, even if it means making a fool out of myself (trust me, my inner idiot is bound to make multiple appearances).

I have a completely irrational fear of grasshoppers, worry that piranha may secretly lurk in lakes, and try to find the bright side in everything, even if I annoy myself doing so.

The Merworld Water Wars

Take a fish-phobic girl, divide her by one hot merman, add a splash of his crazy ex-merbitch, and you get one stinky school year.

Sixteen-year-old Marina Valentine is a rule-stretcher in an uptight Texas seaside town. She’s hormonally challenged, curious to a fault, hates fish, and has a dating resume that makes the queen look like a slut. It’s not that guys don’t ask her out. They do. She just has an unfortunate reaction to dating—uncontrollable gags. It’s not exactly a turn on.

One by one, her oddball friends start disappearing—much to the joy of the snobby high school royals—and Marina fears she is a walking bull’s eye. Inquiries into their disappearances lead to startling, gag-worthy discoveries. Toss in an increasingly inconvenient attraction to one of the royals—who holds the key to solving the mystery…in his fin—and it’s an anti-fish girl’s worst nightmare come true. Soon, Marina finds herself at the center of a looming underwater war that’s really going to play games with her love life.

As time closes in—and the Merpeople officially come out of the ocean—Marina must choose between the lives of her friends, the future of an underwater utopia, and the life of her first love. There’s just one problem. Where does a love-shy, fish-phobic, non-mergirl even begin…especially when her enemy may be the one person she trusted above everyone else?
Buy it:

Unlike most high school seniors, Marina Valentine isn’t sweating college (she’s outlawed from even applying), the prom (she has her dream date…possibly), or graduation (though surviving to rock the ill-fitting gown is iffy). No, she’s a little preoccupied with succeeding as a walking myth post-graduation. So, when Marina awakens as the one and only Siren Savior, she thinks the tide is about to turn on the merbitch’s mer-psycho family. Unfortunately, she has issues with her flighty Savior powers, and the timing couldn’t be worse. For with the arrival of a feared foe, comes the promise of a disastrous year…and that’s an understatement.

For years, mythological beings have awaited the fulfillment of a mysterious prophecy involving Merpeople, Normals, an epic clash, and a wish that could forever change one group’s destiny. But the real trouble begins when an assassin known as The Dealer starts sending her cryptic messages written on potentially lethal playing cards.

The Dealer makes one thing very clear: someone Marina loves will die. Now, she must find The Dealer before he (or she) finds his victim. But with everyone either a suspect or a target, how will Marina be able to uncover the truth before time runs out?

Not even the Siren Savior in all her power can prepare for the devastating answers.

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Someone wicked walks among them.

Heartbreak usually requires time to heal. For Marina Valentine, however, time has other plans: like sticking her with a shiny, stubborn accessory, sending her on a surprising date with someone other than Troy Tombolo, and introducing her lips to kisses that could save or destroy everything and everyone.

Marina and the rest of the Mer-Nor gang must find a way to push through the grief caused by The Dealer, for their next mission will take them on a dangerous, scandal-filled journey that may very well be the most significant to date: hunt down the evidence they need to prove once and for all that the tyrannical King Zale breached the water pact.

But with the shocking identity of The Dealer and overwhelming guilt weighing heavily on her, Marina struggles with frightening emotional urges and begins to question whether she is truly strong enough to succeed as the all-important Siren Savior.

Marina is in more danger than ever before—even inside the familiar study with her trusted friends—because unbeknownst to her, someone has been lurking about, waiting for the chance to undo everything the Mer-Nor gang has achieved…and with the Siren Savior’s doubt growing, that person’s chance has finally arrived.

Buy it:


Thanks to Sutton I get to give one of you amazing readers
a chance to not only meet Katrina but ALL of Sutton's 
epic characters.  This is for US addresses only...

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