Halloween. Todd Clever. Alf. Thank You, America.

Say what you like. The good old U.S of A has the best stuff.

When I visited my amazing family-in-law last Christmas, I was bamboozled by all the goodies in their temple, The Mall of America.

Now this thing is a mall, buddy. It doesn’t just have a McDonalds, a Countdown and a Glassons as we kiwis are accustomed to.

It has a floor – YES A FLOOR – of restaurants. There is a shop that just sells socks. That’s it. A wall of socks. Do you think a sock store could survive in a Westfield mall? Supre just closed down in my nearest mall for pete’s sake. That’s not such a bad thing. We will have much fewer baby prostitutes in shirts that say “I’ve been naughty”. So thank you for that.

But I digress, as usual. America is neat. I like their things and I like their swagger.


Some folks are the opposite. They say too much American culture is seeping into our Land of the Long White Cloud. Specifically in this case, Halloween.


“Why should we celebrate Halloween? It’s an American tradition? What’s it got to do with us?”

Ummmm. Is Santa from Taranaki? No. He’s not. I would know. I know everything about Santa. I’m his biggest fan as mentioned in previous blog posts.

I love Halloween. It is a spooky, corny, candy-filled holiday. I’m more of a traditionalist. I like the pumpkins and the witch hats and the spider webs. When I was around 10, we would get Halloween specials on New Zealand TV – even though we didn’t celebrate it, wtf? – and they introduced me to this amazeballs event.

What was this fricken awesome holiday they had? They dress up? They get candy? What is Trick or Treat? It was a revelation! And for someone like me who loves the eerie, dark and supernatural, a holiday centred around a night where the dead can come back from the grave!



Fast forward 9 years – Yes. Do the math. I watched the movies when I was 10 + 9 years = I am 19 years old right now and there is not a thing you can do or say to change that – and New Zealand is starting to feel the haunting Halloween spirit *Wooooo* *Ghost Wail* *Spooky Sounds*. There are still haters out there but hey, if you want to sit at home in your dumb, normal, non-costume clothes and not eat delicious, free candy then go for it Mr or Mrs Grumpy-lame-face.

So to summarise. Halloween Good. Me Like.

Oh right. Todd Clever and Alf. Both American heroes with amazing hair. They are truly gifts from the lands of America. I could tell you a million more reasons why both are awesome but I’ll just leave you with this image. It says more than I ever could.


Writing Update: Countdown to the Veil of the Corrupter cover reveal.

Exciting! For those who follow my blog, not just for my amusing social commentary but also because I sort of write things, the second book in the Ardentia series, Veil of the Corrupter, will be released early 2015.

We’re going to start the event off with a cover reveal for Veil. How exciting! Are you excited? I know I am!

There will be more information in the coming weeks so be sure to follow me on Twitter for updates.

I appreciate all the support I’ve received with my writing. If you enjoyed The Empyrean Key, please, please, please share it with others. Let them know you liked it and encourage them to give it a go. The more people reading the series the better!

And I almost forgot! What would a Halloween post be without the bestest most awesomey Halloween movie EVER!!! There’s no machete wielding mad man, no randy campers, no terrifying dude in a fedora hacking you up in your dreams. Just a good old fashioned virgin who lit a candle.


Happy Halloween!!!! *Wooo* *Rattle Chains* *Blaahhh* *Scary Noises*


Midweek Motivators – The Three D’s. Drinks. Dudes. Dusic. (I know how to spell music, just go with it.)

I warned you I’d be back on Wednesday.

If you’re reading this then..

A) Hey. How you doing?

B) You have no one to blame but yourself

I have many loves in my life. A good book. A well pruned hedge. The smell of the freezer at the supermarket.


Anyway. It’s those things that I love that normally save me from writers block. As you know, I write stuff. Books specifically. Well, I write other things of course. Shopping lists. Cheques for bills. Ransom notes.


No, no. I don’t write ransom notes. You don’t write ransom notes. They’d just analyse your handwriting, stupid. You need to cut letters out of magazines. Duh? We’re getting off track… Midweek Motivators! This is a regular on my blog. Three items – edible, visual and audible – that are great for pumping chapters out of me! Yes. Pump.


Edible – A Full Tank Carribean from Tank Juice Bar – Oh My Gawd. There are few things in the world that taste as amazing as this drink. It’s all bananas and coconuts and mangos and deliciousness. I keep telling myself that I’m only going to get a minitank because they are crazy overpriced, but then I get to the counter and the guy is like, “What size?” and I’m like, “Screw it. Full Tank.”

Visual – Starlord a.k.a Chris Pratt a.k.a now his milkshake is bringing all the girls to the yard even though I appreciated him when he was funsize on Parks and Rec.


Is it the beard? I’m definitely a beard man. Is it that he’s accessible to homely looking girls like myself? Is it because he’s funny? Every girl wants a funny guy who is rich and on tv. It could be any of the above. Regardless, he’s on the list. PS: Guardians of the Galaxy fricken RULED!!!!!


Lastly. Audible. Now, Lana Del Rey has gotten some slack for her live performances, but she will probably never have a show in New Zealand, so I’ll never have to hear her live and deal with the consequences. On a heavily produced radio edit she sounds great! She’s got some awesome songs to write to, my favourite is Born To Die.

Mmmm. Sweet tunes.

Writing Update: Veil of the Corrupter is coming along great and will be ready for ARC reviewers in December.

The Empyrean Key has been getting some AMAZING reviews. One in particular had me gobsmacked and reminded me why I love writing.

Check out Sparrowhawk’s 5 Star review!

For those who use Goodreads, I encourage you to pop over and look me up. Add me to your Favourite Authors or add my books to your Want To Read list to keep up with what I’m doing. Clickee

I appreciate the support of all those who have read The Empyrean Key and I can’t wait to show you more of Ardentia!

Fantasy Friday! Don’t google it. It doesn’t mean what I thought it would mean…

You’ve already googled it haven’t you? You naughty sausages.

Anyways. It’s Friday and you know what that means


Yes. We gotta get down.

Now before you start riding me about it, yes, yes. I know I didn’t put up my regular Wednesday post and I also know how very disappointed you all are. I had the .jpg ready and everything.

My excuse? I was binging on Supernatural. I really don’t think any further explanation is necessary.


But rest assured, I will be back to my usual blogging schedule next Wednesday with my “Midweek Musings”.

But for now, to celebrate Fantasy Friday which TO ME means it’s Friday and you should read a Fantasy book because they both start with “F”, The Empyrean Key is on sale this weekend for just $0.99.

How much stuff can you get for 99 cents nowadays? Maybe a can of unbranded soda? Perhaps an expired packet of noodles? Or…

The Empyrean Key by J.L Tomlinson



That’s right folks, grab The Empyrean Key on sale for this weekend and get your fantasy-freak on! Click the provided links or look over to your left and clickee le image.

Why you may ask? Because I’ve had a great week. Things are going super well and I hope this is just the beginning! See you Wednesday!

Can you hear them sleigh bells jingling, ring-ting-tingling too?

That’s right folks. It’s 11 weeks until Christmas! That is no time at all!

There are several things you should know about me.

One is that I know all the words to the Kiwiburger song and have since 1999.

But for the purposes of this blog post, another is that I LOVE CHRISTMAS!!!!!??!?!?!1111111


I’ve always loved it. I love the music and movies. I love the shopping. I love the decorations. I love the food and I am a huge believer in Christmas spirit! It is a real thing people! I look forward to it all year long, in fact, I want to put up my fricken tree so fricken bad, you have no idea! Christmas is my crack!

But I can’t put up my tree because my husband will roll his eyes and grumble and groan and say, “Jo-Anne. It’s October. We are not putting up that tree now… rabble… rabble.”

My husband is a good man even though he hates Christmas and love and kittens and hope.


So I have decided that in order to sate my yule tide urgings, I will share with you some of my favorite things about Christmas.

5. Christmas Decorations

You know it’s Christmas when that big, beautiful tree is up and you’re hanging your collection of decorations. It’s like seeing them for the first time after having to keep them in boxes all year. You also get to hang your new ones for the first time! You know, the ones you bought in January when all the stores were having their 70% off Christmas items sale and you were the only one who was waiting for the doors to open!

4. Christmas Lunch

Man. Christmas lunch is the best. It is when the whole family gets together and EVERYONE is happy. No one is arguing, people are smiling and you even don’t mind that your sisters kids are destroying your home, because guess what’s headed for the table… TRIFLE! I love a good trifle. I know it’s not for everyone but if I have a trifle DO NOT put your fingers near my mouth because you will lose them. Actually, just in general, don’t put your fingers near my mouth. What’s wrong with you?


3. The Night Before Christmas

This book was probably the first book I remember being read to me. It immediately brings back memories of Christmas Eves long past where my sisters and I would put out the milk (beer) and the biscuits, hang up our stockings and get ready for Santa. Tradition man, that’s what it’s all about!


2. Christmas Music

Awwwww snap! You know what time it is when I start cranking Dolly and Kenny, yo! Nuff said.

1. Christmas Movies

Now, this is one thing I can start doing in October. Watching my beloved Christmas movies. I have them all and I watch them ALOT. They always get me in the Christmas spirit and for whatever lame reason, I just love them to bits. To ask me my favorite would be like asking which of the stars in the night sky shines brightest for me. They are all wonderful in their own way, in fact, a future blog post will probably be a Christmas movie countdown. But for today, let me go with what is currently in the dvd player. The Santa Clause.



Very valid point, Charlie. But in a related matter, wasn’t anyone at the North Pole upset that the previous Santa was dead? Weren’t any of them resentful that Tim Allen had inadvertently caused him to fall from the roof?


When Tim Allen and Charlie went to sleep in the North Pole that night, did they realize that dead Santa had been sleeping there just hours before? How was everyone so cool with this?!?!?!??!?! I mean, the last Santa must have been a real dick for NO ONE to give a rat’s ass about him.

It’s ok Jo, don’t overthink it, it’ll ruin the magic.

Anyways. Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night!