Friday, 28 October 2016

Pen Wars - Collab Challenge #1

Hi, everyone! It's Rinny.So I have something new and exciting today. As teased on the facebook page It's Pen Wars. For years I followed Liana Marcel an amazing artist/crafter on facebook. Recently she has revamped and is finally following her dreams of becoming an author. She is working on finalizing her first book 'Just Rose'. Anyway, we have been chatting and I after i read her writing challenge from last week. I was inspired and fancied trying one myself. It then snowballed and I thought it would be cool to do a collab style one. I spoke to Leanne and she was as excited and Pen Wars was born.

Leanne has already posted her fab story based on our created challenge. Click the image below to go read it and make sure you follow her. She really does have great posts and she is super talented.

also, check out her Facebook and Twitter

Pen Wars

So now to explain the Pen Wars Challenge.

It is a writing challenge, based on one single prompt that we both have to interpret in our own way. We decided upon a visual prompt rather than written and after much mulling, over images we settled on one that we both could work with. I would just like to mention I am not a writer, and have not done anything like this before. I hope you like my story, please comment your thoughts and if we inspire you show us your story.


  • Aim to write 1,500 - 2,000 words max
  • based on 1 prompt (this week is a visual prompt) 
  • 1 writing session
  • must include reference to the prompt
  • NO prior planning
  • No editing till the end and only minor. No story revisions

**Disclaimer** Possibly not suitable for younger readers

No time for love

Brooke, pull yourself together, no one knows I kept chanting the mantra over and over in my head under the stares of the others.  They weren’t staring maliciously or even suspiciously and were even expected under normal circumstances. If only they knew the truth nothing about this situation was normal!  The worried, concerned looks of sympathy were only making me feel even more anxious, my stomach tying itself in knots, beads of nervous sweat running down my spine, as I tried to play my role. Perhaps I hadn’t helped myself, Perhaps I should have dressed up I mean jeans and a burgundy woollen jumper did not scream funeral never mind grieving girlfriend and my green parka jacket didn’t help matters more functional than formal, more discount mall than runway chic I thought. Fiddling with my grandmother’s ring, I imagined just what the good old folks of Mallowpine would be saying to each other Poor child, look at her, I think it has twisted her mind, awful business losing a love so young especially after so little time.  Her internal monologue continued warring with itself, a child! I’m twenty-one! Stuff them they don’t know the truth, they couldn’t see that although my grief was somewhat real, I wasn’t broken, I’d never be broken, I couldn’t allow myself to.

The bitter cold breeze sweeping the eerie graveyard broke through my thoughts blowing my blond curls back, huddling deeper into my jacket and gipping the dainty pink rose harder between my grasp relishing the pain from the thorns digging into my skin. Pain, I knew pain, better than most how it feels, how it works winding into your every being mind, body and soul and how to cause it. Focusing on the familiar feeling I forced myself to drag my attention back to what was happening around me, the people huddled solemnly, friends of the family and Logan. His family sat beside his future grave and his pale blue coffin, in various states of grief. Of course I stood alone, I didn’t blame them though they didn’t know it this was all my fault or really know me I had only moved here a couple of months ago, not that it mattered after what was coming next I would be moving on, another town, perhaps a different country the South of France is nice this time of year right?

 The reverend was just finishing up his sermon, when I finally managed to bring myself into the here and now.  The coffin was lowered by a group of Logan’s friends as his siblings comforted his parents, each holding the ropes with the same strength and their eyes all gathering shiny wet tears amongst their faces still in serious expressions.  People began moving forward to place their offerings into the open grave and say their final goodbyes.  A small moment of amusement breaking the tension when Jared, Logan’s mischievous best friend tipped in a basket full of marbles and toy soldiers, a nod to their private little joke. His siblings placed carefully drawn pictures, others carefully placing flowers or notes. His parents approached together leaning on each other for strength, silent tears ran down his mother Martha’s cheeks as together they gave their son their last gift his favorite red cap and the gold cross they had bought him for his now not upcoming birthday.  They paused as people began to disperse for the wake, saying their own goodbyes.  I hadn’t known them long but they were good people, they didn’t deserve this.

I waited wanting to respect their grief, staring at the ground. A hand touched my shoulder and I had to ignore my natural instincts to strike out. Looking up, I found myself staring into the grief ridden eyes of Martha.
‘ Honey, you okay? It’s your turn take your time. We’re all heading back for the wake now. We’ll see you there?’
I froze before replying choosing my words carefully ‘Um … thanks, I’m so sorry.’
‘It’s not your fault ….. He loved you very much you know’ she said her voice full of sympathy
‘I loved him too’ I automatically replied in a whisper.
She smiled sadly, pulling me into a short but sweet hug before walking away to join her husband. I wished I could tell her; would it bring closure? Or just fear. She wouldn’t see me again; I wouldn’t be at the wake my night was already planned. I slowly walked forward aware of the bored men leaning on their shovel wanting to get the ‘job’ done and back to their warm homes where their families waited. Again my internal monologue spoke up You can do this, just get it over and done with, you were never made to love, you have bigger things to do.  It didn’t stop my breath quacking, my heart from hurting, grief rolled over me as tears ran down my cheeks soaking my jumper. This maybe wrong, this shouldn’t have happened but the emotions hitting me were real like a tidal wave they brought me to my knees. Losing all sense of time, I began sobbing, muttering for forgiveness, telling him how he was stupid but how I would always love him, he would never be forgotten. I had learned my lesson no one, will get this close to me again, no one will die for me again. I dropped the rose and pushed myself to my feet, turning I stalked off towards the woods where my home away from home awaited.

I had set up camp close to the edge of the graveyard, my trusty camouflage wind tent. It wasn’t ideal in this cold weather but better than being stuck in the guest house with its nosey old landlady and the pink flowery walls, so not me I grimaced at the thought, a few miles away. I grabbed my flask and hunkered down under the thin worn cream blanket I had brought along. It was going to be a long night and I was already weary. As minutes turned into hours and the sky began to darken, I praised the academy for its training. Nothing like being forced into dark rooms filled with obstacles over and over to get you as used to the dark, well as used to it as you can with human eyes. I no longer feared it, it comforted me like a cup of hot cocoa, it’s dark arms wrapped around me as if I was being embraced by a loved one. Thinking of the academy brought back flashbacks of training, hours of teachings and even more spent hunched over boring lore tombs. I had only been eleven when my mother had pulled her aside one evening to tell me the family ‘secret’, what I would become, the sacrifices I would have to make. For hours after I had sat still on the edge of my little bed in shock, the walls of my childhood home felt like they were closing in on me as my mother bustled around me gathering my things and packing them into my tiny suitcase as if I was going on holiday.  No such luck, I was being packed off to Steelbriar Academy where I would be trained, my skills honed and if I was ‘lucky’ become a member of The Krieger Society, a group of individuals born to the founding families through the generations who supposedly battled the monsters from my nightmares.
Unfortunately for me it was all true. I was a warrior whose main focus in life was meant to be vanquishing darkness. A reluctant warrior, I thought. I knew that what I was doing was important, honourable, just and well … needed. However, it was also dangerous, lonely and lately difficult. And the society was going to be pissed, I’d messed up big time. An innocent was harmed.

That single thought was like a wrecking ball crashing through my mental walls. Mental images flew past my mind’s eye. My phone call from my superior, the long road trip to Mallowpine, bumping into Logan in the local bar where she had picked up a couple of shifts. His intense blue eyes flecked with green, his dark cropped hair and tall frame blocking the way when a drunk had started causing trouble.  It had been sweet but laughable I mean me needing protection! I’d took down demons, werewolves, vampires and creatures that no one would even be able to process imagining. More images rushed through my mind, his relentless pursuing of me, me finally agreeing to a date thinking that I would botch it up so bad he would give up, our first date, more dates, first kiss and more all flashing through.

Then the last image, the worst the one I had kept locked away for the past few nights. Logan screaming, blood pouring from a wound in his neck while the blood from another poured into his throat. I heard my own screams echoing in my head. I saw myself rushing forward my weapon drawn, I could feel the fury rolling off me as my soul shattered the same time the monster broke his neck. Before Logan’s body hit the floor my stake drove home into the monster’s chest crunching its way through bone and muscle to the chamber where it’s heart should have been beating as the thing burst into flames and turned to dust.  Time flashed forward showing myself crouched over Logan, crying steeling myself for what had to happen next. I kissed his cheek, and closed his eyes and then went to work ripping his clothes hiding the distinctive marks making them look like they’d been caused by an animal. Then walking away feeling my heart break more as I left him to be found. It had to be done this way but it felt like a piece of me was dying.

My head snapped up breaking my train of thought. My instincts had kicked in. Straining my ears, I listened closely. I heard the familiar scraping and banging of flesh on wood. It was time. I got up picking up my hand carved stake, I started moving back towards the graveyard. Moving faster, trees hitting me in the face as I ran past as I heard the noise of dirt shifting. As I broke through the trees I saw a hand break the surface quickly followed by another and then he was pulling himself out the grave. My beautiful Logan his wounds healed, his beautiful features twisted into the face of my enemy and his once intense eyes now dark and dead of emotion. My breath left my chest, pausing for just a second before moving closer. He had now gathered himself to a standing position, he seemed to be scanning the area. His eyes settled on me.
‘Brooke? …. What’s going on? Why was I in a grave. This is Jared isn’t it. Come out you big loon. This isn’t funny. I … don’t feel right. What is going on?’ he sounded different his voice huskier and deeper.
My adrenalin kicked in and I withdrew into myself going on pilot mode. I moved up to him my arm behind my back.
‘It’s okay Baby everything’s going to be okay.’ I heard myself say in a sweet voice.
He reached out to embrace me and I moved solely based on my training and instinct, I raised my arm the stake shooting forward, catching him by surprise and as it hit home and his body turned to dust. The soft breeze carried him away and I whispered my voice breaking,
‘I love you.’

Thursday, 27 October 2016

blog tour w/ giveaway & guest post: The Legend of the Pumpkin Thief by Charles Day

For Tour Schedule including posts that have excerpt & reviews click here

The Legend of the Pumpkin Thief by Charles Day
Publication Date: October 18, 2016
Publisher: Tantrum Books

As the townsfolk sleep, something creeps into the neighborhood. Hidden in shadows, its presence is as old as time itself, its intent not born of goodness.

Nick, a teenager who fancies himself a detective, wakes to find his carved masterpiece missing. Now a mystery is afoot, and Nick has his first assignment, to find out who or what is snatching up the town’s pumpkins and why.

Unfortunately, as with all great detectives, obstacles stand in Nick’s way—the neighborhood bully and his cronies, and the strange old lady and her dog who share the run-down house at the end of Nick’s block. As Nick investigates, an urban legend unravels . . . .

The Legend of The Pumpkin Thief.

Nick fears the legend as he embarks on the most dangerous adventure of his young life. Collecting clues, getting ever closer to the true nature of evil, he learns that curiosity comes with a high price.


Guest Post

Please welcome Charles Day! :) We asked Charles to discuss : Why do you think Urban Legends are so interesting and appealable to individuals of all ages? Thank you, Charles for taking the time to do a guest post for us and we wish you the best of luck with your new release.

Charles's post : 

I think they’re interesting because they have this sort of grab to them. You want to believe that they are true. Like the legend of Lake Ronkonkoma, where legend has it that a young Indian woman who drowned after her father killed her lover because he was from another tribe, she vowed to take down a male every year. And the truth is that every couple of years, a man does indeed drown in that lake. I mean, that’s creepy to me.

In my book The Legend of The Pumpkin Thief, I really had a ton of fun creating an urban legend that all the characters have to deal with, including old Mr’s Needlewhitter.

Thank you for having me, and hope you enjoy my creepy Halloween tale.
About the Author

Charles Day is the Horror Writer Association’s Mentor Program Chairperson, Co-Chair for the NY/LI Chapter, and a member of the HWA Library committee. He is also a member of the New England Horror Writers Association, the American Library Association, and the Young Adult Library Services Association.

He is also the Bram Stoker Award® nominated author of the YA novel, THE LEGEND OF THE PUMPKIN THIEF. He’s also published his first adult novel DEEP WITHIN and the first book in his Adventures of Kyle McGerrt trilogy, a YA western heroic fantasy, THE HUNT FOR THE GHOULISH BARTENDER, and his first coauthored novel with Mark Taylor, REDEMPTION

His forthcoming publications and projects in development for 2014 include a comic book series
based on the ADVENTURES OF KYLE McGERRT trilogy, his first middle grade series, THE

On the publishing business side of things, Charles is the owner of Day Media and Publishing in New York, which houses the successful imprints, Evil Jester Press, Evil Jester Comics, and Hidden Thoughts Press (mental wellness collections,)

He’s also an artist and illustrator, who is passionate about creating the many characters he’s brought to life in his published, or soon to be published works. You can find out more about his upcoming writing projects, check out his illustrations and art, or find out what he’s cooking up next with that evil dudeinthebox, the evil Jester, by visiting his Facebook page:


Contest ends November 4, 2016 (not run by opinionated cupcakes)

  • One (1) winner will receive a scrabble tile book cover charm (US ONLY)
  • Five (5) winners will receive a digital copy of The Legend of the Pumpkin Thief by Charles Day (INT)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Let us know your thoughts below and links t follow Opinionated Cupcakes are below too! We love comment make our day

Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Teaser Tuesday: Mistletoe on 34th Street By Lisa Dickenson

Welcome to this week's Teaser Tuesday! 

Hey Everyone :)

 Hope you are having a nice day? Here's this week's Teaser Tuesday. I have been giving an arc of this book to review beginning, of November by the Little Brown Book Group. (Thank you).

Here's how it works you randomly open your book/scroll to a page (ebook) and pick a line or two off the page to tease/tempt everyone else with. So i wonder if these random sentences are enough to tempt you into buying this book upon it's release.


Mistletoe on 34th Street By Lisa Dickenson 

This title will be released on November 3, 2016. 

First pick - Page 79 : 'I took a Tamagotchi with me for company. And t wasn't even the nineties; it was like, five years ago.'
    'What's a Tamagotchi?'

Second pick - Page 158 : 'One day you can spend Christmas with me and I'll show you.' He smiled.

Third pick - Page 219 : 'Of course. I haven't heard you this excited about a man since that Draco Malfoy lookalike in that club last year.'

What are you currently reading? tease us back in the comments.
If you have a Teaser Tuesday post link below.

Release Blitz: Water under the bridge By Britney King

Title: Water Under the Bridge
Author: Britney King
Release Date: Oct 25, 2016
Add to Goodreads

My whole life I’ve wanted nothing more than to fit in.
Only, my whole life I’ve done anything but.
That’s probably because I’m anything but average. After all—female serial killers seem to be a minority in today’s society.
And that’s ok—because I’ve longed for a change for quite some time now.
Which brings me back around to fitting in.
You know what one has to do to fit in?
I do.
One has to blend.
Which is great news!
Because I realize my clock is ticking, so to speak, and now I want a family. Luckily, I’ve always been good at getting what I want.
So I figure what better place to blend than suburbia?
All that stuff I did before—it’s water under the bridge now. I just hope it’s not too late to change my ways. Here’s to hoping for suburbia’s sake, too.
I mean, what are the odds I could be the girl next door?
Apparently, they’re better than you might think.
Your whole life you’ve wanted to fit in.
Only your whole life you’ve done anything but.
That’s probably because you’re anything but average— you’re a killer— but, then so am I.
You say you’ve longed for a change for quite some time now.
This is good because, well, me too.
Your clock is ticking, you want a family, but you waste so much time.
I know because I’m watching, waiting, blending.
What you don’t realize is if you want me, and I think you do, then you'll have to change your ways because sometimes hunters become hunted.
But what are the odds of that happening in suburbia?
Apparently, they’re better than you might think.


You told me by candlelight last night that your real name is not Ryan as it said on the dating site, as you said at dinner. It’s Jude. I wasn’t surprised. We all become someone different online. As you ran the tips of your fingers across my cheek, you promised you were sorry for lying, and then you showed me when you touched my scars with your lips. You asked for the truth about them, but I didn’t give it to you. You don’t get to be the only one who lies. Which is why I haven’t told you exactly who or what I am.
It isn’t time for whole truths about anything.
Speaking of names, it took a lot to pry Amy’s last name from your lips, and you see… you do still keep her close to your heart. You’re protecting her. This is how I know. It’s dangerous, Jude. She is dangerous, and you need closure, you really do. It’s too much to go around carrying the weight of her, believe me, I know. Morris was the answer you gave when you finally relented—but you lied. Your jaw did this twitchy thing, and that’s how I knew. We all have our tells, and apparently, that’s yours.
“No doubt, she’s married now,” you add, to cover your tracks, to conceal your lies, and you are still in denial, still protecting her, and it’s okay because, luckily, I know how to hunt people.
Later, I withdrew in your lies, and you sensed me pull away.
I started slowly at first, retreating into myself and then I left and didn’t speak to you for four days. You let me have my space, at first. I’ll give you that. But the thing you need to know about women is that it isn’t space we want, not really. We want a fight. We want a man willing to burn for us—someone willing to put it all on the line. We want to go to war.
I know you have it in you, I do. This is why I don’t return your calls. This is why I play hard to get when the truth is I miss you. I miss the way your arms feel around me, the way your eyes bore holes into my soul—all the ways you seem to know me even though you don’t. So on the fourth day, when you show up at my door, this is why I practically leap into your arms. You aren’t confused like most men would be. Not you. You come bearing gifts that aren’t flowers. You come bearing breakfast and plane tickets, and you are a warrior, Jude, you are.

Britney King writes modern love stories for mature audiences. She also enjoys suspense and often finds her sweet spot penning a good mixture of the two.  Britney is the author of seven novels and is currently at work on number eight. She lives in Austin, Texas with her husband, children, two dogs, one ridiculous cat and a partridge in a pear tree.


Hi,  guys and gals, It's Rinny. I was lucky enough to win an Arc of this book and I cannot wait to read it and post my review ASAP. Doesn't it just sound so interesting? Pretty sure I have not read anything like this before. Let me know in the comments if you plan on reading this book? Also if you are featuring a review of this book today on your blog as part of the release blitz, feel free to add your links below. If you want to follow OPINIONATED CUPCAKES our links are below. Have a great day. Congratulations Britney on your release day, we wish you all the best.

Monday, 24 October 2016

Release Blitz for Hades by Elda Lore

Title: Hades
Series: Modern Descendants
Author: Elda Lore (L.B. Dunbar writing as)
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Release Date: October 24, 2016


“Welcome to Hell.”

Persephone Fields is just an average girl: beloved daughter and loyal friend. One night decides her Fate, when the prince of The Underworld becomes her savior and her kidnapper.

Hades has lived centuries in darkness and sin. When he decides to save the blonde goddess, he doesn’t consider the ramifications of his decision to bring her into his realm.

Two worlds divided struggle to find friendship in a history of family discord beyond their control. When attraction blurs the line, questions result in choices of love or loyalty.

A modern twist of the classic myth: Hades and Persephone, this version incorporates the sensual tension of opposites divided by contemporary humanity and mythical underworlds. Also reminiscent of Romeo and Juliet, this is a love story ripe with desire.


Author’s note: This book contains scenes of sexual intimacy.

Purchase Links

99c release special!!!


Author Bio

Elda Lore is the alter ego of L.B. Dunbar. A writer of mythical tales in the modern world.

Author Links