Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Catalyst, a Work Space and a Giveaway

I’m delighted today to welcome author Kristin Smith to Thoughts in Progress as she makes a stop on her Xpresso Book Tour Blitz for her recently release, CATALYST, the first installment in her Deception Game series.

As part of the tour, Kristin is joining us to share an excerpt from her book and a look inside her writing space. In addition, you can enter to win a Clean Teen Publishing Mystery Box (Intl winner would get eBook prizes). Please see the end of the post for more details.

◊by Kristin Smith
◊ Series: The Deception Game, Book #1
◊Published by: Clean Teen Publishing
◊Publication date: November 21st, 2016
◊Genres: Dystopian, Young Adult

Too pretty.
Too smart.
Too perfect.

In a crumbling, futuristic Las Vegas where the wealthy choose the characteristics of their children like ordering off a drive-thru menu, seventeen-year-old Sienna Preston doesn’t fit in. As a normal girl surrounded by genetically modified teenagers, all of her imperfections are on display. But after the death of her father, everything she’s ever known and loved changes in an instant.
With little skills to help provide for her family, Sienna clings to the two things that come easily—lying and stealing. But not all thief-for-hire assignments go as planned. When a covert exchange of a stolen computer chip is intercepted, she becomes entangled with a corrupt government official who uses her thieving past as leverage, her mother as collateral, and the genetically modified poster boy she’s falling for as bait.
In order to rescue her mother, there may only be one option—joining forces with the Fringe, an extremist group, and their young leader who’s too hot to be bad. Problem is, these revolutionaries aren’t what they seem, and the secrets they’re hiding could be more dangerous than Sienna is prepared for. In the end, she must be willing to risk everything to save the one thing that matters most.
Catalyst is a thrilling adventure of danger, romance, intrigue, and deception.

CATALYST can be found at the following sites:

“You need to learn a little hand-to-hand combat.” Trey puts his fists up by his face. “Always protect your soft spots—your face being numero uno.” He glances at my bandaged arm. “You right-handed?”
It’s after breakfast and we’re in the training facility, a large, gym-type room with thick mats, punching bags, weights, and a long wall of mirrors. The smell of sweat and stinky feet assault my nose as I stand across from him on the pile of black mats used to create a “ring”. We have the gym to ourselves. Most likely because everyone else is too smart to work out right after a meal.
I nod and flex my right hand, the one that’s not bandaged.
“You should be fine, then. I’ll take it easy on you.” He grins. “Go ahead—hit me.”
I take a step back and shake my head. “I’m not gonna hit you.”
He moves forward to decrease the distance between us. “I said, hit me.”
I raise my arms as if I’m about to fight him, but all I can think is how much he’s done to help me. How can I punch the man who saved me from the government facility, removed my tracker, and is willing to help rescue my mother?
When he realizes I won’t fight, he lowers his hands. “Remember, Sienna, these men don’t care that you’re a girl. They don’t care how old you are. If given the opportunity, they will hurt you.” His eyes harden. “Now hit me.”
I punch him as hard as I can, and he’s not expecting it. The force of the blow to his face knocks him backward, and my hand throbs from the impact. He looks stunned, especially when a trickle of blood makes its way out of his nose. But then he grins.
Wiping his nose on his shirt, he motions with his hands for me to come closer. “Nicely done. Now, hit me again.”
Surely, he must be crazy. I’m about to walk away, but his words echo in my mind. If given the opportunity, they will hurt you. I can’t give them that opportunity.

Now Kristin joins us to share an inside look at her writing space. Welcome, Kristin.

My writing space has evolved over time, much to the relief of my back and wrists. I used to write here:

But now I write here:

I'm a sucker for all things girly, sparkly, and pretty, so when I was designing my space, I knew I wanted it to reflect who I am and what I'm about. I love inspirational quotes and sayings and since this writing thing has always been a dream of mine, I figured focusing on the "dream" aspect would be a good thing. Plus, the arrow decor is a hot item right now, and I'm a big fan! Obviously.

You can't have a writing space without a sturdy desk and a comfy chair, and I think I found the best for my budget.

And a writing desk isn't complete without a little chocolate pick-me-up for those long writing sessions.

And a writing session isn't complete without a cup of herbal tea or hot chocolate for those chilly winter days.

My Make it Happen board keeps me focused on what I need to get done that week and reminds me of my daily goals.

Oh, and can't forget about the perfectly placed copies of my book that inspire me every time I sit down to write. Hello, beauties!

Well, that's my writing space in a nutshell. Where do you like to write, or read a book?

Kristin, thanks for sharing that look at your writing space. It’s inspiring. I love the glass ball fixture hanging beside the desk (in the second and fourth photos). I’m guessing it’s some type of light.

Author Kristin Smith
Now for those who aren’t familiar with Kristin, here’s some background on her.

Kristin Smith writes young adult contemporary and science fiction novels. When she’s not writing, you can find her dreaming about the beach, beating her boys at Just Dance, or belting out karaoke (from the comfort of her own home).

Kristin currently resides in the middle-of-nowhere North Carolina with her husband and five incredibly loud but extremely cute boys.

To read more about her obsession with YA novels or her addiction to chocolate, you can visit her website and connect with her on Goodreads, Facebook, and Twitter.

This is a blitz-wide giveaway for a Clean Teen Publishing Mystery Box (Intl winner would get eBook prizes). To enter the giveaway just click on the Rafflecopter widget below and follow the instructions. The widget may take a few seconds to load so please be patient.

Thanks for stopping by today during Kristin’s visit. Remember what Kristin asked, do you have a favorite place you write or read?

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Kristin, thanks again for joining us today. Your work space looks very inspiring and your book sounds intriguing. Wishing you much success.

    1. Hi Mason! I stumbled upon your website and just want to take a moment to thank you for sharing my book release last year! I'm sorry I didn't get over here sooner.

  2. I have a lot of respect for authors who can inspire young people to read. And the story does sound interesting. Wishing you success!

  3. What a beautiful feature and giveaway. Your photos are very special. I read in a cozy den curled up on a loveseat with a cup of tea by my side. Perfect and relaxing. Your work area and decor is appealing and conducive to reading and writing.

  4. Congrats, Kristin. I don't often see redheads on covers, so it looks gorgeous to me.

    My work space is an entire office that is organized but very, very full.


I'd love to hear your thoughts on today's post. Thanks for dropping by.