June 1, 2012

The Chosen Summer Shorts– #1 Emergence

Emergence, the first short story for The Chosen series is now available on Amazon for $0.99.  The good news is that newsletter subscribers get to read it on my website for free! The newsletters for June, July and August will include a link to that month’s story on my site, along with a password. The story is in a PDF file. All of the stories are prequels to Chosen and the first one is Emma’s story.  It starts three years before Chosen, when Jake began to get visions and the Bad Men first showed up. I’ll be honest. I really, really love this story. I neglected my children and wrote it in less than twenty-four hours. It’s 10,000 words, forty-two pages long, so you know I spent most to that time with my butt firmly planted in a chair. But I couldn’t help it. Her story just rolled right out of of me. When I finished, I attached it to an an email and sent it to my crit partner Trisha Leigh. Trisha’s always been a Will fan, but she told me she LOVED it and said this story gave her an entirely new perspective on Emma. July is Will’s story. […]
May 30, 2012

100K and a Winner!

I did it!!! (Thank you to Cynthia Moyer for posting this on my Facebook wall last night!) I kept hitting refresh, refresh, refresh until the book of ONE SALE put me exactly at 100,000. It seems so appropriate which book put me there. The title of this book sums up the last three years. And this book was the hardest book I’ve ever written. Thank you to every single person who bought my books and READ my books! Your love of my stories and the fact you tell your friends about them is what got me here today.  I NEVER EVER forget that.  Thank you just doesn’t seem like enough. Which is why I’m having a GIVEAWAY!!!! I said I’d giveaway some prizes when I hit 100K and it’s time to announce the winners!  I LOVED reading your comments, telling me which book was your favorite. And I love that some of you had a hard time picking.  Good thing no one’s asking me or I’d have to give my standard answer: I love them all and picking one favorite would be like asking which child of mine is my favorite.  (Although I have to confess, I LOVE Twenty-Nine and […]
May 30, 2012

Writer Wednesday

Hi all, I’m stopping by celebrate the birth of my new book, To Ride A Puca. Before we get to the goodies I’m giving away, here is a bit about the newborn. It is a young adult historical fantasy about the last of the druids in ancient Ireland. This one was a bit heartbreaking to write and because of that it became very special to me. I hope it will be to you as well. Invaders are coming to take what isn’t theirs, again. Neala wants to stand and fight for her homeland, but as one of the last druids, she may be standing alone. Persecuted, hunted down, forced to live in obscurity, the druids have all but given up. Can the determination of a girl who has barely come into her power bring them together? Or, just when she finally finds her place among her kind, will they end up losing a homeland their very magic is tied to? Disclaimer: This novel contains some violence and difficult subject matter. It is recommended for mature YA and up. Available in eBook and hardback at B&N, Amazon, and other retail sites. I’ll be giving away great prizes, a new one, every […]
May 25, 2012

My Birthday Request from You

Today is my birthday. I find the older I get, the less inclined I am to tell my age. Today, I turned forty-eight. Now, I know what you’re thinking.  My pictures must be ten years old.  I assure you they’re not. I’m blessed with good genes. But I realized this morning that being two years away from the big FIVE-O is better than the alternative. (Dead) And when I woke up to over ninety birthday good wishes on Facebook from family, friends and readers, I felt incredibly blessed. (My kids  letting me sleep until almost 10:00 and my daughter making pancakes was pure bonus.) Then, as I brushed my teeth, I realized another fact. I’m the happiest I’ve ever been in my life. I feel more fulfilled, more full of hope and purpose than I’ve EVER been. All because I believed in myself. I had a dream that began when I was a kid– to write a book. I tried off and on in my twenties, always stopping.  Then in three years ago, I told myself either put up or shut up. No more excuses. Do it or don’t. It was up to me. So I did. I wrote my […]
May 21, 2012

100K Reader Appreciation Giveaway

Yesterday, I hit 95,000 in total book sales!!! How surreal is THAT? When I published my first book, Twenty-Eight and a Half Wishes, last July I hoped to sell 1000 books by December 31. That was dreaming big to me. Seriously. The truth is, I’ve sold so many books because of my readers. If you all hadn’t bought my books, then told your friends, I’d be lucky to sell my original goal of 1000. You all have no idea how much I appreciate you! I worry that every time I tell you all thank you, you’ll think it’s disingenuous.  And it’s not. I love you all so much! When I realized how closely I was getting to selling 100,000 books, the first thing that popped into my head was: I want to thank my readers. And the best way to do that is to have a giveaway!!! This contest will be open immediately. I will close the contest as soon as I find out I’ve sold 100,000 books. At my current rate of sales, I should hit that within two weeks, however, my sales are slowing down, (these things are cyclical) so it could be three or four weeks. Or even […]
May 19, 2012

The Amazon Book Popularity List

Sometimes I keep on top of where my books sit on lists and other times they escape me. In fact, this past February I had no idea that Chosen was #1 in all of Science Fiction and Fantasy in the entire Amazon store. Print, audio and eBooks. I would never have known if Ashelynn from Gypsy Book Reviews hadn’t notified me. I was playing around on Amazon last night and I checked out the Science Fiction and Fantasy list:                         Chosen has been in the top 100 of Science Fiction and Fantasy for 145 days and I didn’t even realize it. *head desk* Maybe I should pay more attention to these things. Part of the reason I was looking was because of the recent rumors are floating around that Amazon has changed their algorythyms again. This time they are playing with the popularity list. Did you know Amazon has a popularity list? Honestly, I often forget about it, which is bad on my part. Readers often think the popularity list is the best seller list, so a  book’s ranking on the popularity list can be a huge factor in sales. […]
May 18, 2012

The Chosen Series Summer Shorts

I’ve been playing with the idea of a novella prequel for The Chosen series (Emmanuella, Raphael and Alex from very early in the game) as well as several short story ideas. So, after some thought and multiple, somewhat needy discussions with some friends, I’ve decided to release one short story every month during the summer. June will be about Emma when Jake was two years old and began to have visions. July will be a story about Will and his life before his court marshal, showing who he used to be. And August is really fun. You get to decide. My June poll will list several story ideas and you get to VOTE on which one you want me to write. The winning story suggestion will be the story for August. Here’s the best part:  I’ll have the short stories available on Amazon for $0.99,  but if you’re on my email newsletter list, you get a link to read the story for free. You read that right. You get to read it for FREE! This is my thanks to YOU for reading my books! Now I have to come up with ideas for you all to vote on…  
May 10, 2012

Results of April Poll: What makes you decide to read a book?

Hopefully, repeat visitors to my site have noticed I have a monthly poll listed on the side. I try to change it around the first of the month, but I’m usually a few days late. Why do I do this? Sometimes I’ll run a poll just for fun or curiosity, such as the poll that asked for your favorite Denise Grover Swank book. Honestly, some of the answers on that one surprised me. But often, I’m asking to help me understand how MY READERS react/respond/behave in regards to books.  I’m either trying to determine the best way to market to other readers OR I’m trying to determine what my readers are looking for/wanting from an author or a book. April’s poll was the later. I wanted to know how readers pick books to read, hoping to glean information to reach out to new readers.  I created the poll so that multiple answers were allowed because I myself am not limited to only one way. I take friend recommendations and look at reviews. I collected this information for just myself, but it occurred to me that others might interested in the results too.  I used PollDaddy (a free service) and they […]
May 9, 2012

Writer Wednesday– Bonnie Paulson

This week’s author is a Facebook friend of mine– Bonnie Paulson.  I asked her to write a guest post about romantic gestures and she even included Will in her post!!! (I confess, I may have squeed when I read it.) She has a special surprise giveaway at the end. One you’re guaranteed to be a winner! How awesome is that? Scoop of Romance – Season to Taste When you think of romance what comes to mind? A novel? A movie? Flowers? Channing Tatum without his shirt? Usually romance involves the giving of something like jewelry or chocolates (my favorite are Ethel M’s lemon satin crème dark chocolates). But what about the intention behind the giving? Is it bigger than the gift itself? I like to see some effort behind the act, especially if I’m reading about it. For instance, Will in Chosen saves Emma’s life like a thousand times – even against his better judgment. Isn’t that romantic? In my YA Urban Fantasy romance, Barely Alive, Paul does his best not to eat Heather – he likes her for more than her flesh. Isn’t that romantic? I go out of my way to have dinner on the table as often […]
May 5, 2012

Top 100 Indie Authors for May

The I Reader Review website has begun compiling a monthly list they call “The Top Indie Authors.”  The Top 100 Indie Authors for May is based on sales figures for authors from the April. To my delight and joy, I made the list. And not only did I make the Top 100, but I made the Top 50!!! That is unreal to me. One year ago, I was doing a lot of soul searching while I wrestled with the decision to self-publish Twenty-Eight and a Half Wishes. If you had told me last year that a year later I’d be on that list, I would have laughed–at how deluded you must be. I was hoping to sell 1000 books of Twenty-Eight by the end of 2011. I met my goal. The list ranks me at #47, but the truth is my accurate sales totals put me between #33-#39. It all depends where Amazon borrows fall into the figures. For anyone looking at the totals, that puts me a little over 15,000 books sold in April. And that seems unreal. So what doea that list mean? Not much, really. But it is validation. Self-publishing has become more acceptable, but there’s still […]
May 2, 2012

Redemption (The Chosen #4) and Why I Have Three Series

First things first. The fourth The Chosen book now has a title– Redemption— and a release estimate– early October 2012. Thank you to everyone who has emailed, sent me Facebook messages, posted on my Facebook Timeline and sent me tweets, all asking WHEN would the next The Chosen book be out. I have never felt so loved and wanted. Well, except for my youngest child who is often a cling on. In this post I’m going to address why there’s a fourth The Chosen book, why I have three series, and why it takes me “so long” to release a book. I’ve stated this before, but it’s buried in posts so there’s no harm in repeating it: I had intended for Sacrifice to be the last book of The Chosen series. In first draft, I had gotten to 80,000 words and realized I was only halfway through my intended plot. (The typical adult book is 80,000-100,000 words.)  I had a huge dilemma. While I had never stated it was a trilogy, it WAS my intention. (I left myself a back door to add more if necessary, the beauty of self-publishing. I get to call those shots.) Also, the three symbols […]
April 18, 2012

Writer Wednesday– Trish McCallan

It is my great pleasure to introduce to you my friend, Trish McCallan.  I met Trish on Twitter about two years ago. Around the same time I met Eisley Jacobs, if you remember from her interview a few weeks ago. We used to post lines from our current manuscript on the hour with a hashtag of #wipfire  Trish and I were on the same path at the same time, sharing our experiences as we worked on acquiring an agent  We both knew the other was talented  and figured it was a matter of time until we got our first book deal. But it just didn’t happen. Then coincidentally, around the time I was deciding to self-publish Twenty-Eight and a Half Wishes last May, Trish had decided to self-pub her book, Forged in Fire. Our connection grew tighter. Both of us were traveling on this journey of the unknown, and it was comforting to know that someone I knew was going through it too.  For me, it was scary. How well would my book sell? Was I making a mistake? Was I killing my chances at a traditional publishing career? But it was exciting too. The chance to be in control of […]