Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Halloween Special and Giveaway

It is my favorite time of year again tomorrow. It's time for ghost, ghouls, goblins, werewolves, vampires, witches... I could go on and on. It's Halloween.

In celebration of all things paranormal, I am starting this discussion for authors and readers to post specials and giveaways throughout the month of October.

I will discount my novel Immortal from $1.99 to $0.99 throughout the month of October. Also anyone who writes a review on Amazon, Smashwords, or Goodreads, they will be entered to win a signed copy of the first print edition of my novel. (The winner will be announced on November 2nd via my blog )

So good luck to you all this season and happy haunting.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

So It's Like...

The words every Author dreads.  Your book is a lot like (insert popular novel here).  But should we cringe when our book is compared to (insert authors name here) novel?

I am finding that my debut novel is being compared to (wait for it) Twilight. I can't deny there are a lot of similarities.  A young woman, two gorgeous guys, and vampire like immortals (The name of my book is Immortal. I know I got really creative with that one). Though there is no drinking blood and not everyone will survive (have to wait for the sequel  to find out who). The ending to the first book is decidedly not Twilight-esk (this is mentioned in every review so far).

The question remains as authors should we baulk when our novels are compared to whatever book happens to be popular at the time? Personally, I think not. We as humans tend to group things.  It gives us comfort knowing everything has an order.  As readers and writers a lot of us tend to like a certain type of novel.  (I know for me it is shear torture having to read through the first 50 or so pages of Stephen Kings' and Ann Rice's novels. I also know going in I will have to deal with this.)

I know being compared to another writer can be chafing, but it can also be good.  I think the thing most of us worry about is can/will it be bad for our book?  I think the answer to this is yes and no. If someone didn't like the novel or author your book is being compared to they may not read it (I know this worries me). This may not be a bad thing though. Nothing bugs me more when I pick up a book to read and discover it is similar to another book I hated.  So as writers having someone know up front that it is similar to a book they dislike may prevent a bad review or taste in someones mouth and leave the door wide open to those who may enjoy it.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Working on Forever

Working on the followup to Immortal.  Forever has a much darker presence than its predecessor. It can be frustrating though as I progress. It is mostly that I am actually writing to a deadline this time and I have to keep up with school.

I'm finding myself loosing motivation for school.  I keep telling myself, I only have two semesters left.  It just isn't helping. I really just want to write. It stinks that you have to have a back up plan (or at least I do) for everything.

I'll keep working on Forever.  I just don't want to force it or put out anything that isn't as perfect as I can make it.  Have to love being a perfectionist.  Well back to work on Forever and tomorrow back to school work (uggg).

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Thank You Book Bloggers

I want to some time to thank all of the book bloggers out there.  You make life a little easier for us writers and readers.  You take time out of your busy schedules to let us open us up to knew books that we may not have known about or considered.  I know I've found several books I would never have thought about picking up if it weren't for you.  Kepp up the good work and I look forward to reading your next blog.

Friday, September 17, 2010

The Future of Publishing

There is so much information out there about where the future of publishing is headed. Will books go the way of the newspaper? (I mean when was the last time you picked one of those up) Will bookstores become obsolete? 

My answer is no.  I don't believe that either of things will happen though there is no doubt the industry will change.  The real question is will it change for the better?

We've already seen or at least heard about a lot of the cubby hole book stores with the smell of paper heavy in the air going under with the big chains taking over.  (Yeah cheaper books)  I believe the chain stores will have to adapt to the new market, the E- Market.  As in e-books.

This is where I believe things will get tricky for us as authors.  It is already difficult to find an agent.  You practically have to sell your soul (mmmwwwahhhaaa, devil rubbing his hands together) to get an agent as it is.  On top of that most help little once your book is published,unless you are a big money maker, or they believe you will be.  (After all they make money off of your hard work)  A lot of agents expect you to have a network in place for marketing your book before they will even consider you.

The question is how to build such a network?  There is the new traditional way setting up websites, blogging, linking your facebook with twitter.  Then you have to market your blog to your audience (You got the sent boy, go get 'em)  This is where everything comes to a head.

As most authors/ writers know you must complete your first full length novel before attempting to find and agent or really do anything. They are looking for established writers and those with strong followings (example: I have 5000 followers on my twitter account and another 7000 on my blog. I do not have this many followers on anything.) They believe this will translate into a lot of sales, but I don't believe this alone will be enough.

Indie Publishing is where we are headed.  I believe soon it won't just be a query letter the gods have sent down from the heavens to get you published that is needed. It won't just be having a million followers on your blog.  It will be have you published a book yourself?  What was the reception like? Do you have any fans/followers? This will be what it will take to get an agent in the future, and your book in the bookstares that make it through the future chaos.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Reviews, Sweeeet

I am so excited I have receieved two reviews on my novel Immortal. One is on Goodreads by Jenn and the other just recently posted on my Amazon Kindle page by Shari. I have also receieved a rating as well on Goodreads.  They are both good reviews in my opinion and I'm happy they enjoyed my novel enough to take the time to write a review about it.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Writing is the easy part...

Ok, as you all know I completed my first novel, Immortal back in May. Yeah :) I never thought that would be the easy part.  It took me nearly a year and a half to complete and I ended up with five major revisions as I went through. The final book showed little if any resemblance to the final product. 

It took the next month and revised and edited to get it ready to send out to agents and took about a week to write a query letter. From what I have read and looked into a week on a query letter isn't nearly enough. Most it would seem to take an average of 3 months to get their letter in order.

Flash forward- After two months of sending out letters and getting the dreaded thanks but no thanks, I stumbled on an article about Amanda Hocking on Writer's Digest. She self-published earlier this year and has done quite well. It was an idea to tempting not to look into.

Flash-forward two weeks. After much research I decided to follow her example and e-publish.
It took me several days of extensive formatting to get it ready for upload and another few days to find and format the cover (by far my favorite part of the process). I have since placed made my novel available on Smashwords and Kindle and this weekend managed to get it up on in paperback.

Considering all the time, effort and energy this process took it is nothing compared with marketing.  Let's face it that is what every author, writer, blogger, and YouTube addict is doing and dreaming about. Getting those clicks and viewers to their site.  How do we do this? There are books, sites, and videos about how to do all this. In the end though it takes time time and more time. Finding the right sites to post on, networking with those you want to reach, and most of all luck.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Book Trailer

Sorry I have been so neglectful. I have spent this week teaching myself how to use Windows Movie Maker to make a book trailer.  The reason you ask?  To create my very first video as well as a book trailer. 

I saw the one by Amanda Hocking for her book My blood Approves, and looked up others on Youtube.  It took me for-ever to get the right pictures and the right script and figure out which button does what, but I hope it was worth it.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010


I was a little worried because it took me so long to format my novel that I may have done something wrong. But I was accepted to Smashwords premium catalog. I even get my very own ISBN number. I know e-publishing may not be the traditional route, but I still feel pretty stoked.

I also sold two copies of Immortal. Woohoo. I feel like an honest to goodness writer now. I know it's lame but I can't help but be excited. (Even though I can't taste food and I've slept four hours in the past three days. I hate having a cold and worse being congested to the point I can barely breathe.)

Monday, September 6, 2010

It is Finished

After 12 hours Immortal has finished uploading. I can't believe it is actually out there in the world.  Double checked most of the links so it can be downloaded.  The first 30% of the book is free so you can see if you like it before purchasing.  Hope everyone enjoys it.

Ready, Set, Go

I can't believe it, but I am getting ready to submit my book to smashwords. I'm not sure whether to be excited or sick.

Update: I just hit the submit button there is no turning back now.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Formatting Complete, I think?

After nearly tweleve hours I'm done, I think. It was supposed to take two hours.  I know I'm not part of the Geek Squad, but come on.  Twelve hours, and to be honest I'm still not sure it is completely correct. Next time I decide to go insane and format a paper myself I'm going to keep a stronger beverage the Dr. Pepper close at hand.

Saturday, September 4, 2010


I thought picking out cover art and lettering was difficult and time consuming.  Whoever came up with the formatting for e-publishing must have taken lessons from the Marqui de Sade. I spent most of the night going over it and I'm still not finished.

I have used Word since it came into existence.  I thought I knew all of its in and outs.  I am now becoming intimately familiar with the program.  Smashwords (where I plan to publish) has a very informative guide. My only issues is that as I move forward I find that I did something small incorrectly.  It can be very frustrating having to go back because I used 16 font for my chapter headings instead of 14.  Oh well, It will be worth it in the end, at least that's what I keep telling myself.

Friday, September 3, 2010

New Information, New Cover

Well, after much research and reading, I discovered you have to format your electronic cover as if it were sitting on a book shelf.  I guess it makes sense.  I just didn't think it would matter.  So I have created a secondary cover to replace my first one.  The concept is still the same, but it took me twelve hours to find the correct picture.  Let me know what you think.

Thursday, September 2, 2010


I have recently completed my first novel. I am considering e-publishing or going 'Indie' with my novel Immortal. I have gotten much feedback on the forum and via my page on Writer's Digest (link below). I know, and understand that by going the 'Indie' route, I may not be the next main stream author or millionaire, but I hope to be read.  This is a blog about my journey to get published and be read.
Unfotunately, you will need a Writer's Digest account to view this page page. The account is free.