Welcome to my blog!

I'm so excited that my lifelong dream of becoming a published author has come true. If you'd like to go straight to excerpts, descriptions, and buy links for my books, click on the covers below on the right.

I love to hear from my readers! If you have a comment for me or if you'd like to submit a character for published character interview or unpublished character analysis, please use the form below or email me at cecilia (at) ceciliadominic (dot) com.

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Tuesday, September 24, 2013

A Writer on the Couch: Guest posting at Jill Archer's Blog

Today I am guest posting over at Jill Archer's blog about how psychology informs my writing, which lots of people assume, and how writing makes me a better psychologist, which tends to surprise people. This is also a good opportunity to remind y'all that I've got a Characters on the Couch project, and I plan to post my next case soon. If you'd like to know what that's about, click here.

By day, I’m a clinical psychologist with a special focus in behavioral sleep medicine. I have a private practice, and my main clientele is people who want to sleep without using medication. I do general psychotherapy as well.  By night and weekends, I write fiction and blog about wine and writing. 

Although I don’t have any formal writing training beyond one adult continuing education class, which I snuck in while I was in graduate school at UGA, I’ve been writing creatively since I was a child.

The influence psychology has on my writing seems obvious, at least to me. The truth is that I find people and their problems fascinating. They’re both about people, how they change and grow – or choose not to – and the consequences of either path.

To read the rest, click here.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Tony Noland on Superheros and Booze: A Guest Post from a Fellow Author

I know Tony through Twitter, where he keeps me laughing with his wry wit, blatant geekiness, and clever observations about the writing and publishing life. He's also one of the few Twitter writing friends I've met in person. My husband and I were visiting my sister in Philadelphia, and Tony agreed to meet up with us in a small Chinese restaurant. After we figured out we must be the right people, having never even seen pictures of each other before, we settled in for a night of foodie adventurousness. Now I have an inside joke about crunchy frog (congee -- don't ask) and an online/IRL friendship I really value. We've beta read for each other, and I was honored he asked me to do so for his novel, which came out on Monday. It's a very clever book with sympathetic, real characters, fun humor, and a sweet spot where Humanities and Science majors can meet and mingle successfully or at least find common ground over a nice beverage. The love story is well done, too.

So, without further ado, I give you Tony's guest post on superheroes and alcohol:

My new book comes out this week: "Verbosity's Vengeance". It's a science fiction superhero novel starring the Grammarian, a hero who uses grammar- and punctuation-based superpowers to fight Professor Verbosity on the mean streets of Lexicon City. With my book launch this week, you can easily imagine that the question foremost in my mind is: why don't more superheros drink?

Batman is a fitness junkie who treats his body like a temple, Professor X is an abstemious aesthete. Superman is a workaholic and Captain America is a boy scout, but alcohol doesn't have any effect on either of them, anyway. Of heroes who DO drink, Thor's banquet hall mead quaffing is like a frat house joke, Wolverine's Molson-and-Canadian-Club boilermaker habit is just part of his tough guy rep he works to maintain, and Tony Stark's alcoholic boozing is a standard pillar of playboy excess. Each of them is a literary archetypes of different kinds of moral repugnance ascribed to drinking and virtue ascribed to not-a-drop abstention. Where is the moderate, social drinking of the kind enjoyed by billions of people around the world every day?

 You'd think that after a hard day (or night) of superheroics, more superheroes would want to kick back with a drink to unwind, either in the quiet of their own home/cave/fortress or in the company of friends. In my book, Alex Graham doesn't drink while he's on duty as the Grammarian, but in his civilian life, he does enjoy a glass or two of whisky with his old pal and mentor, the Silver Cipher. Alex doesn't abstain completely, nor does he drink to excess. He enjoys his libations in moderation, which I think makes him more relatable and true to life.

"Verbosity's Vengeance" has a lot of wit and wordplay based on language and grammar usage. For that reason, I often get asked if I wrote the book for a younger audience, either as pure adventure or as a teaching tool. It could be used that way, but I wrote it to tell a good story. The word nerd humor is interwoven among the superhero action and tension, with plenty of science fiction technobabble to move things along. Is a young adult audience going to be put off by the occasional quiet martini or flute of champagne at a reception? I wouldn't think so, since they must sure see such behavior in the real world. However, I'm often surprised at what people find objectionable when deciding which book a young adult might pick up.

Drugs, of course, are right out. Any kind of social indulgence in mood-altering substances gets a Just Say No. Sex and swearing are almost as bad as alcohol, since the assumption is that none of them can be done in moderation. Either nobody swears or everybody swears all the time. Either nobody has sex or everybody is in a shifting round robin with everybody else (except for the virtuous heroine and/or hero). Violence seems to be no problem. Katniss Everdeen runs over and around the corpses of teenagers stabbed, burned, and bludgeoned to death. Harry Potter is surrounded by torture, murder and mayhem, but we all pretended butterbeer was magically alcohol-free.

So, sure, you could you give my book to a young adult. They'd love it. You'll love it too if you like action, adventure and wordplay, and if you don't mind seeing responsible adults acting like responsible adults. You can buy a copy for them or for yourself right here. As it happens, there's very little swearing and no sex, although there's G-rated romance between Alex Graham and the intelligent and talented Dr. Kate Hunter. They enjoy a couple of drinks together, too.

Is the Grammarian alone in his appreciation of a good libation? Did I forget someone? Can you think of a superhero who engages in moderate social drinking without some kind of moralistic overlay ascribed to that character?

You can find out more info about Tony and his fiction on his website Landless.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

My Book Sale: Guest posting at Demons, Dreams & Dragon Wings Blog

Today the lovely ladies over at the Demons, Dreams & Dragon Wings blog are hosting me as a guest with my first sale story. Yes, you have to click through a content warning to get there, but I promise the post is SFW.

I'm not sure how much I believe in metaphysical stuff like projecting intentions and the power of clearing out old stuff to make room for new opportunity, but after the way my first sale happened, I might become a believer.

To read the rest, click here.

Don't forget, The Mountain's Shadow will be out on October 1! It's already available for preorder on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and other retailers.

Monday, September 16, 2013

My first interview!

Fellow romance writer M.V. Freeman, author of the paranormal romance Incandescent, invited me to answer some questions on her blog today, both about me and my debut novel The Mountain's ShadowYes, I had to turn the psychologist's eye on myself. Come find out the answers to how long it took me, what strange combination of circumstances prompted me to come up with the idea originally, and what carnivorous bunnies have to do with the writing process.

To read the full post, click here.