Mega Shareathon, ROW80, Book Cover Design, & Monsters.

Do you have events for me to shout-out about? Get in touch.


Also, this is a ROW80 update – if you’re here for that alone and do not want to check out these amazing links, dart to the bottom (I’d add a bookmark link right about here if I knew how to!).

But first, I have a collection of great posts and resources to share. Remember, if you’s like to share anything with my readers, here on my blog, get in touch using the contact page of my email address. :)

These guys got in touch to share an enormous resource list, compiled for higher education students. I plucked the following resources from it, because although there were many specifically for students studying for their thesis, these seemed interesting and useful to all writers. So that means – You! :)

Click the link to see the full list, especially if you’re at university!

Click For Full Resources List

 Writers Resources

WriteCheck Blog


WriteCheck Blog

WriteCheck Blog is a comprehensive site for writing papers and includes plagiarism checks, grammar checks, along with professional training and other useful services.

Compelling FeatureWriting Tip #27: Using Essay Structure for More Than Just Essays

A Handbook of Rhetorical Devices

A handbook of rhetorical devices

A Handbook of Rhetorical Devices kind of summarizes its function in its name, but they also include quotes and examples of the various devices.

Compelling FeatureSelf Test


iPad Project Blog

iPad Project Blog

iPad Project Blog increases the awareness of the effectiveness of iPads in classroom settings through teaching impact, classroom awareness, and other areas that are detailed on the page. They break down great educational apps each week and have a forum for discussing education-related iPad topics.

Compelling FeatureProject Team


Missed Periods and Other Scares

Missed Periods and Other Grammar Scares

Missing Periods examines different grammatical errors in each post and offers assistance to those struggling through email help.

Compelling FeatureGrammar Madness


The Elements of Style

Bartleby com the elements of style

The Elements of Style analyzes different usages of literary devices and elaborates on them. They also have search tools for fiction, nonfiction, verses, and a reference search.

Compelling FeatureTitles

Modern English Grammar

Modern English Grammar

Modern English Grammar is supplemental content for Daniel Kies, English Professor at College of DuPage, and his Modern English Grammar class. Content varies from grammar structure, to common usage errors, as well as linguistic stylistics, text analysis, and student examples.

Compelling FeatureGrammar: Words and Their Arrangement


Advice on Research and Writing

Advice on Research and Writing

Advice on Research and Writing compiles tips from numerous authors on subjects such as writing and publishing, research skills, speaking, career development, and more.

Compelling FeatureHow to Organize Your Thesis


The Plagiarism Checker

The Plagiarism Checker

The Plagiarism Checker has an extremely straightforward format that simply features a window to paste a student’s paper or homework to see if it connects to any other papers.

Compelling FeatureSubscribe




Bibme is a resource for making bibliographies and citations, along with tips on various formats, such as APA and MPA.

Compelling FeatureCitation Guide


Presentation Zen

Presentation Zen

Presentation Zen blogs on professional presentation design and gives advice that forms supplementary content to his array of published books.

Compelling FeatureStorytelling, & the Power of First-Person Narrative


International Writing Centers Association

International Writing Centers Association

The International Writing Centers Association is the governing body for a network of writing centers across the world and provides a plethora of resources, links, and journals to better compile content for students.

Compelling FeatureResources




Publetariat is focused on the independent author. Due to the rising tide of technology, self-publishing is an increasingly popular method for the output of literature and associated works.

Compelling Feature: Why I Chose An Assisted Self-Publishing Service


Research Guides

St Edwards REsearch GUides

Research Guides provides research sources, strategies, discussions, and guides on a variety of sources for writing your paper.

Compelling FeatureAll Guides

Research Buzz

Research Buzz

Research Buzz compiles information and commentary on search engines, databases, digitization projects, and online information collections.

Compelling FeatureGoogle, Amazon, Delicious, More


Institute for Writing and Rhetoric

Institute for Writing and Rhetoric

The Institute for Writing and Rhetoric is run from Dartmouth University and emphasizes the values or the Dartmouth writing program. The site gives users access to writing courses, workshops, citation assistance, and opportunities to put their skills to work through English as a Second Language and Teaching Assistantships.

Compelling FeatureWriting Courses


Write to Done

WRite to Done

Write to Done is a forum for writers to discuss techniques that have proven effective and offer tips and insight to other writers. The blog is composed of passionate authors who truly enjoy writing.

Compelling FeatureGuest Post Guidelines


Organizing Creativity

Organizing Creativity

Organizing Creativity guides users through a series of helpful tips to better implementing ideas for creative projects. The book is available as a PDF and there is a supplementary blog as well.

Compelling FeaturePortfolio


These are a few of my EVERNOTE’s:


  1. The Business Rusch: Shifting Sands « Kristine Kathryn Rush
  4. Stepping into POV – Hugs and Chcolate
  5. Huge list of resources from Susan Kaye.
  6. The first, second, and third drafts Jade Kerrion
  7. 12 Ideas for Email Updates (You’ll Actually Enjoy Writing) – Self Publishing Team
  8. 50 redundant phrases to avoid in writing – Mark Nichol
  9. How to Create a Viral Book Trailer (or Get 1,000,000 Views for Almost Anything)
  10. Wendy Webb: A Dark and Stormy Night: 10 Tips for Writing a Paranormal Mystery





Now, this is also my first ROW80 post in a week or so because I’ve been busy with May Monster Madness Meme (which I loved) where I met some great peeps who all love horror and of course, monsters!

My ROW80 updates :)

Shah the Willing Writer

I wrote LOTS of blog posts” for a meme:


And please go click on your Favourite Vampires, and your Favourite Vampire Hunter polls, so I can gather up those votes and write a post about the chart-toppers! I’ll be writing that post in the next few days, and it will be a bonus post for this meme, 21st May:  Yey! It was a great meme and I’m just so chuffed to have met some many fab horror lovers. Including, but not restricted to…

Lexa Cain

Ben Ellis


Toni @ My Book Addiction

Ms Misantropia

Little Gothic Horrors

Sophie Duncan


Maynard Morrissey

Cathy Keaton

Real Queen of Horror

Magaly Guerrero


Thanks everyone; you wrote some great posts and I have learned a LOT and have a LOAD of TV shows, movies, and books to watch, re-watch or read. :)  And of course, I will not forget the monster playlist, Ben :)

Apart from blog posts, I’ve also wrote on my WIP! Hurrah!

Shah the Marketing Wizz

Set up another book tour for June. Received a review from Readers Favourite. A rogue vowel made it seem she’d not read (or understood it), but when I bought it up they were brilliant and she explained she’d mistakenly written ‘her family,’ instead of ‘a family.’ I accepted the explanation and now I can simply love the review, which was always a good review. :) I await the link to post on Amazon Professional review (if I can find it, any ideas?) .

Errm. Anything else here… probably, oh yes. I have been designing book covers again. No doubt you’ve seen some floating around FB with requests for feedback.

No? You haven’t? Oh well, here they are, only one has had an edit 😀

Why? Because I cannot afford my designers new prices (not even in my dreams)! I’ve therefore been trying to master a few self-taught design skills. I needed a yummy font catalogue to go with those few skills, and I found a great place for free fonts, so downloaded a few beauties! Which is great, because what with editing costs, cover artists and what-not, it’s an expensive game; this publishing lark.

The first image in the following gallery is the cover of the first book in The Supes Series. The designer of which now charges around $400 for ebook covers, just like this. He is brilliant (and offer lots of other incredible services) but his popularity and talents meant he stepped out my reach. :( I’m just chuffed to have gotten at least one of his covers, though :) His button is in the right hand side of this blog.

FINDING LUNA IDEA 1: With the first cover I designed for Finding Luna, I wanted something different. I’d found a few images which ‘spoke to me’ (yes, they can do that!) and wanted to see them in action. I  do like it (apart from the fonts), but it doesn’t match the first in the series (at all!) and it doesn’t match the genre – urban fantasy, either. Which is why I then had idea number 2.

FINDING LUNA IDEA 2: I love this, but the fonts are too plain and the colours a bit wishy-washy. I searched everywhere for the same fonts Derek used on Finding Esta, but can’t find them. I’ve even asked designers and they don’t know. I’ve sent him a message, but I’m yet to hear from him. He’s a busy guy. I purchased the image I’ve used (of the same model used for Finding Esta) quite cheaply and the other decoration was obtained from a mixture of Pic Monkey and Smart Photo Editor. I use both of these a LOT!

FINDING LUNA IDEA 3: After I found those great fonts, I replaced the others previously used, then played around with a few other things, like lighting, and I wanted to make the moon and the title  stand out a lot more, as in the first cover. Do you think I managed it?

Question: Is this too young adult? It’s for a new adult, urban fantasy novel. Is that what this cover says to you? Be honest.


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Shah the Imperfect Publisher

See above. I’m having issues with the cover and those pesky live elements! *Groan!

Shah the Pro Blogger.


As above, plus…

I posted on both my other blogs about these covers.

Shah the Ready Reader

I still need to review Katie Salidas Immortalis Carpe Noctem (Immortalis Vampire Series #1). I’m also still trying to read the Forbidden Trilogy by Kimberly Kinrade for I.O Book Tours. I’m also reading about Digital publishing and well, so many blog post and articles its baffling!

Shah the Fitness Superhero (or not!)

Walking, trying to cut back on food (not easy at those times it it girls? Sorry boys :P) I’m also drinking lots of green tea, popping lots of vitamins, and taking my meds on time – mostly! Hubs was away for five days with work up till Thursday evening, which means I hardly slept for that time. My circadian rhythms seem to throw a paddy when he’s away. Most annoying.

Interested in upping your fitness/health levels? Click HERE to sign up form to participate. Join my here on that date to see more information about my fitness/health regime. If you don’t pick up anything from me, I bet you’ll pick up something from any number of other participants. And if not, you’ll be all fired up to improve your own regime anyway. You could share your secrets – we all love a secret :)


Please click the link to find fabulous #Row80 participants HERE




Do you know about Indie Soap Box Files meme?

Do you have something ‘indie/self publishing’ to share here? Something we could empathise with, learn from, be entertained by?

Please send me your #ISBF using my CONTACT page. I look forward to hearing from you. X



 Before you go – Any tweaking suggestions for the final cover? Is it too YA (my series is NA/A), is it urban fantasy enough? Would you pick it up on Amazon? Anything you think I should add or remove? All input appreciated.


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  1. says

    Thanks for the resources, that’s a fantastic list!

    As for the cover, girls’faces always say YA to me, so I might not be the best judge. I really like what you’ve settled on, and aside from the girl-on-cover thing, this doesn’t scream YA to me. The font is lovely, the colours are great. Definitely wouldn’t turn me off if I wanted a NA read. :)

  2. says

    If I only had more time/inclination to follow up with these great sites for writers . . . It looks like you have a lot of good ones. Love . . . love . . . love the way you’ve set up your post, so all encompassing and organized. 😀

    About your book cover . . . I like it. I wonder if you’d like it to be a little more mystical, though. I think a head shot is good, in keeping with the first book in the series.

    Pop by and visit me at my new site. It is most definitely a work-in-progress.

  3. says

    Thank you so much for your wonderful comment over at my place. It was just what I needed to hear :) Hope you have a wonderful week!

    • says

      Hurrah! Everyone else says it needs altering in some way. Glad you liked it as is… I do, and I felt I was alone. Course, I will have to change it because the consensus seems to be that it’s a little too light, romantic for my genre/story. And it is, just as the first idea was too sic-fi. *Sigh! X

  4. says

    Wow… Shah, I’m always astonished that you find any time to actually breathe with all of the stuff you have going on! *still in awe*

    Anyway, liking the newest incarnation of the series, but I’m thinking that perhaps part of what makes it so “girlie” is that you’ve maintained the flesh colors so well. In the first cover, you maintain a bit of a dichromatic color scheme with the intense purple/pink (fuchsia?) for the face–maybe this time, since the story is darker, add more shadow to her face… Or make her face a touch smaller and against a more foreboding backdrop.

    Just thoughts. I like the girl for consistency, but truthfully, I don’t like this image of the girl, because it strikes me as too romance-like. Or… I doubt many boys would be brave enough to find the great story inside…

    • says

      Thanks, you’re right, Eden. On all fronts. But, damn it, I bought this images because I really like it… and if boys don’t buy this series, that’s cool; my target audience is female. I haven’t finished the cover yet, at all. So there will be many more attempts. :) X

  5. says

    First I loved those links in the beginning of the post. As an adjunct of writing and English Lit at a local college I bookmarked a bunch to peruse when I get a chance. I am always looking for resources for myself and my students since they often are coming into my class with very little research and writing experience. Most don’t even understand the concept of plagiarism which is just scary!

    I love the cover-I think it’s very eye catching. You have some serious creative genes there-I wish I could do stuff like that! If you’re target is females (especially women who read NA) then I think you nailed it. 😀 Hope you have a great week and good luck on your goals!

    • says

      Oh thank you Kat. I needed that! I felt a bit pants about the cover and started to work on another (totally different concept) but I did like this one. It’s good to hear you liked it too. Hey, and you think I have skills – Fabulous! X

  6. says

    Wow! You are so busy! How do you do it all?

    Looks like a great list of writing links – I’ll definitely have to check them out.

    I like the third cover (I like the first one, too, but you’re right, it does have kind of a sci-fi / horror vibe to it), but it doesn’t really feel urban fantasy to me. I’m not sure what would take it there – maybe a little more dark? Cover design is definitely not my forte – kudos to you for jumping in!

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