City of the Divine Sun
Holly McCaghrenA famous archaeologist, last rumored to be in search of a hidden Maya city in Guatemala, has gone missing. Her daughter. Serena, worried and overcome by strange visions, abandons everything to search for her mother and the answers to the apparitions that have begun to haunt her.
Her mother wasn't the only one searching for Mah K'ina. The Baron seeks to plunder the city for its untold riches and is willing to eliminate anyone that gets in his way. Out of her element and desperate to save her family, Serena must now rely on her past to show her the way.
The Importance of a Good Feedback
As an Indie Author, I don't have the benefit of having a team of people dedicated to publishing my book. Having a group of people willing to read your novels and give you honest feedback is priceless. This is beyond your close friends and family who, while completely willing to read your book, also love you to pieces and therefore won't give you completely honest feedback. The more critical, the better. Not because you have to listen to every bit of feedback, but because it opens your eyes to different ways of doing things.
When I was designing the cover for 'City of the Divine Sun,' I can't tell you how many different versions I went through before finding “the one.” With each revision, after hours of tweaking layers and pictures and backgrounds, I would step back and say, “This is it!” ...And after receiving feedback on each version, I would realize it was most decidedly not “the one.” In fact, some of them were quite awful. I just couldn't see it at the time.
Its very easy to get wrapped up in your own perspective that you can't see your flaws for what they are. Not that you should lose that perspective, because that is what makes your books unique. There is always room for improvement, however, and it is so very important to make sure you spend enough time trying to get an honest evaluation.
Sometimes, you just get tired and can't take another negative comment to save your life. That's okay too. Take a break, work on another project, get out of the house. The time away might just give you that extra bit of clarity you need. In the end, its not about the fact that you've made mistakes. It's about making your book the very best book it can be, even if that is sometimes unpleasant.
I would be lying if I said I didn't forget that from time to time. But tomorrow is a new day... and chocolate helps too.
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I was born and raised in the Houston, Texas area, and have lived in Texas my whole life! (Gotta love humidity!) I currently live in central Texas with my husband and two sons.
Nothing makes me happier than settling down with a good book, but they aren't always easy to find! Some of my favorites (in no particular order) include: Jane Eyre, The Blue Sword, Dracula, Ender's Game, Heir to the Empire, and the Harry Potter series. I love a good scifi/fantasy book, but it certainly isn't limited to that genre.
You can read all about my current/published novels on my webpage,www.hollymccaghren.com, as well as on Goodreads.
"Now's our chance. We have to go before someone figure's out we're missing!"
A rush of adrenaline flooded her system as Serena followed the rest of the group to the side of the helicopter, ducking and sticking to the shadows as much as possible. The landing pad was strangely quiet in the absence of the recent commotion; every sound they made seemed to echo cruelly across the opening.
They reached the side of the helicopter without incident, and Ryder creaked open the driver's door and motioned for everyone else to pile in. Serena ducked in the passenger seat while Hunac and Madeline slid into the back seat. Tossing their bags in the small open cargo space in the back, everyone looked at Ryder expectantly.
Serena noticed he seemed nervous for the first time since she'd met him. Sweat rolled down his face as he tried to make sense of all the dials and switches on the dashboard. It seemed as though there were at least a hundred different things to look at.
I hope he knows what he's doing… None of this makes any sense to me.
"Put on your headsets, folks. It's about to get really loud in here."
Serena put on her headset and looked behind her. If Hunac was nervous, it was not evident on his face. Her mother, however, seemed to fear for her life. Serena reached back and laid a hand on her knee, awkwardly, and gave her a reassuring smile.
"Here goes nothing…" Ryder muttered to himself.
He moved so quickly, Serena couldn't keep up. She knew that time was of the essence. Once the rotors began to spin, everyone would know exactly where they were.
The engine cranked up, and she heard a mechanical whine as the rotors started to turn. To her left, she could see the two men fly out of the building, dazed.
The tall man frantically pulled out his radio, speaking rapidly to someone on the other side. Serena had no idea what he was saying, but a moment later, the man seemed to realize exactly what was happening.
He turned to yell at the man next to him, and they both ran back into the building.
Please hurry! We have to get out of here!!
Then the ground shifted nauseatingly before her, and she realized they were slowly rising into the air. The helicopter rolled forward, tipping dangerously down. The blades spun mercilessly close to the building where the men had gone. They flew out now, running madly away from the landing pad.
"Ryder!! Pull up!"
"I'm trying, darling. It seems I'm a little more rusty than I thought."
The aircraft pulled back then, leveling out before rising again. Serena saw a jeep coming into the clearing now, men jumping out and pulling out their weapons.
They were high enough to be above the trees, but nowhere near out of the range of the assault rifles. If they did fire, however, the chopper would most likely crash into the trees. The Barón came out of the jeep last, looking up and making this realization himself. He raised his arm, signaling his men to lower their guns.
They were too high for her to be sure, but it seemed almost like the Barón had seen her and smiled. It wasn't a good smile, either.
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