Archive for the 'Writer Promotion' Category
In 2008 my husband and I visited Las Vegas. I’ve visited Vegas a couple of times and I always enjoy wandering the strip, people watching and gawking at the different sights. We were wandering through Caesar’s Palace and a plot bunny struck me over the head when I paused to look at a statue.
What if there were real people stuck inside that statue, I thought.
The plot remained inside my head, percolating along with all the other plot bunnies that get filed in there. Hubby will corroborate – I have a big head, so everything fits in there with no problem.
I couldn’t quite get a grip on why the people were stuck in the statue.
Then we visited Rome last year, and inspiration struck again as we wandered through the Coliseum.
My characters drove chariots.
They were “rock star” charioteers.
After that everything flowed nicely, and I ended up with a story that I called Stoned.
Meantime here’s the video I’ve made for Stoned.
I’m visiting Cindy Carroll’s writer blog today—Guelph Write Now. My post is about organizing a Goodreads giveaway, and I have a few tips for those of you who are interested in this type of author promotion.
While you’re there make sure you take the opportunity to enter my current Goodreads giveaway to win a print copy of The Bottom Line.
Hubby and I went away for the weekend to Matakana, north of Auckland. Unfortunately, we forgot to take a camera. Mr. Munro took several photos with his phone, but for some unknown reason his phone is holding them to ransom. Hopefully, we’ll break them out of captivity soon!
Instead of showing you the gorgeous beach we walked along, I’m posting a photo of Mt. Ngauruhoe, which is one of the trio of volcanoes situated in the middle of the North Island. This photo was taken during the summer. At present the entire Tongariro National Park is covered with snow and is a very cold place indeed!
Today it’s my turn to blog at Not Your Usual suspects. My post is a writerly one about getting words on the page.
Did you do anything special during the weekend?
Author Cathy Yardley has an excellent post about Selling Books (without being an asshat). She says nobody wants to badger readers — but “if we want to sell books, what else can we do?” Right? Read the rest of her article here.
I have to say, from my own observations, that my twitter stream is full of “buy me” type posts. Recently I’ve been doing a lot of editing, and now I’ve started working on a new book. Not terribly interesting to read or tweet about. When that happens I like to retweet a couple of posts that I’ve found interesting for some reason or another. Some days it is hard to find a decent post to RT amongst all the white noise of “like me”, “buy me”, “RT me” or “do—” (insert relevant item in the blank area).
On days like this, I shake my head, give up and get back to my current WIP. If anything, I seem to be doing less and less when it comes to promotion and focusing on my next book instead. I thought my sales might drop away because of the lack of promotion, but in truth, my royalties seem to be better than ever. Who knew?
I’m not saying writers shouldn’t do promotion, but maybe think a little harder before you add to the white noise online. Seek to entertain rather than demand attention, and I think you might have a better shot at getting your book noticed.
What do you think?
Sorrel Thyme peered through the scratchy bushes, desperately trying to ignore the sand flies making a meal of her bare arms. This had to be one of the world’s most uncomfortable ways to score a job interview. The man and woman she was spying on started to kiss—a passionate, no-holds-barred kind of kiss. Horrified, she watched hands steal beneath clothes, gulped as said hands squeezed and caressed.
The amount of flesh on view grew alarmingly, and she squirmed, heat whooshing through her body to explode in her face. Talk about embarrassing. She wasn’t sure what to do, where to look. Alice and James Bates, the owners of the Fancy Free condom company, didn’t have a mere picnic on their minds. Oh, no. They were busy tearing off each other’s clothes, right in front of her.
Aghast, she squeezed her eyes shut, her skin crawling from exposure to the bugs. It was the only way to explain the edgy sensation blooming inside her, prickling across her skin, irritating her breasts.
The sharp evergreen scent of the totara and manuka trees wafted to her, refreshing and aromatic. Her stomach let out a feisty rumble of complaint, and she jerked in panic. The bushes concealing her rustled, and her eyes flew open. She froze, horror filling her at the thought of discovery.
Alice and James continued their amorous activities. Sorrel’s breath eased out. She caught a flash of pale breast. At least they were too far away to hear her stomach clamoring for food. Placated by the thought, she eased her weight into a more comfortable position. The bush played a musical tune against her robe, a branch cracking beneath her right foot.
“What was that?” Alice asked, her voice carrying across the clearing.
A Peeping Tom—not the best situation to find yourself in! Grab a copy of Biding His Thyme to learn what happens next.
To read more sneak peeks, check out the Sneak Peek Sunday link.
Biding His Thyme, book four in my Fancy Free series, is out later today at Ellora’s Cave. My heroine is called Sorrel Thyme, and she lives in a cult. The rest of the people who live in the cult call Sorrel “Bitter” since that is the literal meaning of her name. Sorrel hates it, and I’m pretty sure if her mother was still around, the rest of the Children of Nature inhabitants wouldn’t be quite as mean. Sorrel just ignores the nickname, although it hurts being called Bitter instead of Sorrel.
Naming characters in a book takes almost as much time as naming a child in real life. I scan my baby naming book and try out several names before deciding on the perfect one. There are many pitfalls when it comes to picking a name. Check out my article on Naming Characters, which explains some of them.
When it came to Sorrel Thyme, I deliberately picked a name that would get her teased. Her surname also connects nicely with her occupation. She works with herbs and flowers making beauty products and a special potion called the Dream Cream. Her name and nickname become part of her characterization.
How do/did you go about picking names for your children/characters? Did you find it stressful? (I sure find picking names stressful!)
Born in the Children of Nature cult, Sorrel “Bitter” Thyme is destined to spend the rest of her life there, but not if she has her way. She’s perfected the dream cream that enhances orgasmic pleasure in those who use it. Now she must approach Fancy Free management with her invention while making sure the cult leader doesn’t learn of her idea and steal Sorrel’s chance of escape.
Jake Ramsey, a Special Air Services soldier on sick leave, agrees to go undercover in the cult to help local police close a case against the leader. Sorrel is his inside contact, a woman who is constantly ridiculed by the other cult members.
The partnership works well and kisses meant to cement their cover take on new possibilities. Jake uncovers secrets, and their loving heats up, passion coalescing into more than friendship. Then Sorrel is tossed into danger. What began as a favor is now deadly serious—-a game Jake must win to keep Sorrel safe.
Wayne wants Jen. Sebastian wants Wayne. Jen doesn’t want any man since her boyfriend ditched her by text minutes before her leaving party. It’s going to take a lot of laughter, fun and hot seduction before the three can decide exactly what they want and how to get it.
Feeling the Buzz, the third story in my Fancy Free series is out tomorrow (21 Sep) at Ellora’s Cave.
For those of you who are not familiar with my series, Fancy Free is a company owned by Alice and James Bates. The main sales of the company come from condoms, but in successive books Christmas is Coming and Feeling the Buzz, the company has branched out into sex toys.
I’ve mentioned this before, but I’ll repeat it for newer visitors. The idea for Fancy Free came from an airline travel magazine.
My husband and I were flying home from San Francisco aboard an Air New Zealand flight. I was browsing the in-flight magazine and an article about new products caught my attention. One of the items was a vibrating condom, and immediately my mind seized the idea and the possibilities. “Oh, look at this,” I said to my husband in a loud voice. “Let’s buy one. What a great idea for a story,” I added. My husband shushed me when I attempted further discussion because people were looking, so I went into daydream mode, and by the time we landed in Auckland, I had a plot mapped out about a heroine who inherits a condom factory.
The second book seemed to flow on automatically from the first. I thought if a company employed inventors, then the inventors would embrace lots of different designs. Enter condom and sex toy inventor Gaby Montgomery and her two male room mates. Gaby’s work life spills over to her personal life and romance ensues. Of course there were quite a few problems between the start of Christmas is Coming and the satisfying conclusion. (BTW – no puns are intended!)
With Feeling the Buzz, I was following an online discussion between several authors when the subject of remote controlled vibrators came up. Immediately my mind spun in a different direction since I’d recently looked at universal remotes – the one size controls everything sort of remote. I started to wonder what would happen if a woman wore a remote controlled vibrator to a social function. What if a person other than her date had a remote control in their possession?
The idea for Feeling the Buzz was born.
Jen Alexander is intent on fulfilling a promise to her mother. She’s heading back to school to finish her education, but a remote controlled vibrator shoves her on a detour.
For her ex-boss Wayne Garrett, the night of Jen’s party is a revelation. Now he’s seen her sexy side, he plans on seduction big time—a private party for three. But worried his feelings for Wayne could spoil their friendship, his business partner Sebastian Lang refuses to play.
Wayne wants Jen. Sebastian wants Wayne. Jen doesn’t want any man since her boyfriend ditched her by text minutes before the party. It’s going to take a lot of laughter, fun and hot seduction before the three can decide exactly what they want and how to get it.
Remember, this is out on 21 Sep from Ellora’s Cave!
And here’s a quick excerpt from Fancy Free, the book that started the series:
“Is something wrong?” James asked in a husky voice.
“I’m fine. No problem.” She barely halted the telltale shiver of bliss at the sound of his voice. As one, everyone turned to stare at her and that heightened her awareness of the wretched man. This was ridiculous. How could an almost virgin run a condom company? She had no experience to draw on. She could hardly count her one time at university as experience. The heat in her cheeks intensified even farther when she sneaked a look at the photo on top of the folder. Half expecting a voice to shout, “Off with her head,” she swallowed and wondered if they’d notice if she ran from the room. Oh dear. Her gaze wandered to the photo again without waiting for her brain to give permission.
The condom was a delicate violet color and had tiny raised dots all over the surface. It looked like an alien creature with chicken pox. There were certainly alien appendages attached. Hard to say what that round bit did. Dragging her gaze from the photo, she turned her attention to James’ run down of the product and the current state of play. Tests. Trials. Okay. She supposed that made sense. They had to know if they worked properly.
But how did they conduct the tests?
Her mind went into overdrive as she visualized a typical condom trial. A man and woman naked on a huge bed while a man dressed in a white coat stood with a clipboard, snapping out pertinent questions and ticking off the questions in his survey. How did the latex feel? Did it fit to the penis correctly? Was it too thick? Too thin? Was it big enough to catch semen? Did it stand up to vigorous thrusts? Is there significant loss of sensation?
A tight band constricted Alice’s chest, affecting her breathing. Her bra felt way too tight. She furtively tugged at the underwire of her bra while a wave of heat engulfed her body. She squirmed about on her chair, warmth growing in her nether regions because of her sexual thoughts. Alice bit into her bottom lip. Questions. She had them, but nerves and uncertainty made her hesitate. A sharp inhalation did nothing to steady her. This was stupid. She had a vested interest in this condom company and had every right to ask questions. “Um, how do you conduct trials?”
Do you like learning about the ideas behind an author’s book? Just curious because I thought I might invite visiting authors to share how they came up with their story idea. What do you think?
Lone Wolf is now available from Amazon, Book Depository, Barnes & Noble and of course from Samhain Publishing.
When you fall out of step, that’s when everything falls into place.
R.J. Blake begins a new session tutoring young werewolves in the old ways—before the introduction of the shift-suppressing drugs that allow their kind to live secretly among humans. He expects nothing out of the ordinary. Until sexy, smart, aggravating-as-hell Corey Wilson arrives. Older than the others, son of a powerful Los Angeles pack leader, Corey is an instant temptation he cannot afford.
The last thing Corey wants is three months stuck in the Yellowstone wilderness, followed by the stifling life his father has all mapped out for him. One glimpse of R.J., though, sparks a determination to seduce the older man before he leaves. Yet as R.J. guides him through the sometimes terrifying process of rediscovering his heritage, a deepening respect calls to his artistic soul and fuels a burst of creativity.
When their time comes to an end, Corey senses hesitation behind R.J.’s insistence that theirs was simply a summer fling. Inspiring him to take a leap of faith with consequences neither of them saw coming. A dangerous plot that reaches from the heart of their love to the highest office in the land…
This book contains a young werewolf intent on seduction, an older werewolf determined to resist said seduction, werewolf politics and brutality, a little spilled blood, and hot, naked manlove in the great outdoors.
During the weekend hubby and I went to a party. The star attraction of the day was a lamb cooked on a spit. Hubby picked up the lamb from the meat place and it rode home, strapped in his passenger seat. He said it was the worst company and had no conversational skills. Ha-ha, right?
Anyway, they started cooking at seven in the morning, after stuffing it with rosemary and thyme, and dinner was served just after two. I think everyone enjoyed eating the lamb. I stuck to the salads since I’m a vegetarian.
This made me start thinking about my favorite picnic or barbeque foods. I don’t think you can go wrong with sandwiches for a picnic. I’m a fan of all types of sandwiches or a savory pie. When it comes to barbeques I like vegetable kebabs, maybe marinated in a little something first.
If you were packing for a picnic or organizing a barbecue what would be your first addition to the menu?