Friday, August 30, 2013

Cover Reveal - Embracing Death by D.T. Dyllin

embracing_death_final 
Title: Embracing Death
Author: D.T. Dyllin
Series: The Death Trilogy #2
Genre: Erotic Paranormal Romance
Expected publication: December 12, 2013 by Dragonfairy Press

Blurb:

All of Samantha Bevan’s memories have been returned to her. But instead of bringing her peace, they’ve only brought her more turmoil. She now recalls the dark addiction to feeling other people’s deaths and every day is a struggle to control her urges. At least she has Austin to help her… or does she? Samantha will discover that even with her memories, she doesn’t know the truth of her past, and those secrets may prove detrimental to her and everyone she loves. Will she be able to unravel the mystery of who’s been pulling her strings before it’s too late? Or will Austin be the one to suffer from her mistakes?

http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18168194-embracing-death?ac=1

About the Author
  
Cynical-Optimist. Chocolate-holic. Sarcasm Addict. Paranormal Believer. Self-Imposed Insomniac. Sci-Fi Geek. Animal Lover. Writer…are just a few words to describe D.T. Dyllin. She was born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and now lives in Nashville, Tennessee with her husband and two very spoiled GSDs.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Author profile - with - Megan Clemons

Join me in welcoming author Megan Clemons



1 - When did you first start writing?
         I have been writing ever since I’ve been able to hold a crayon. I have always loved writing stories and looking at the world in a different way. My first serious efforts at writing began two years ago. I participated in my first NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) and created the framework for my current romantic drama duology Cinnamon.

2 - Do you read much?  If yes, have you always loved reading?
         I adore reading. Growing up, my parents rewarded our good grades with books. My mom would take us to the local bookstore where we would browse for our new books and end each visit sipping hot chocolate in the little café. That adventurous feeling of hunting for a special book hidden amongst the old shelves and exploring the worlds between its pages—it created a wonder in me which I’ve carried into adulthood.

3 -  Who’s your favorite author?  What’s your favorite book?
         Only one? That is a challenge. I would say Sherwood Smith’s fantasy works (her Crown Duel duology and Inda series are fabulous.)
         If I may cheat and choose others, I would add Frances Hodgson Burnett (Secret Garden), J.M. Barrie (Peter Pan), Rudyard Kipling (The Jungle Book), C.S. Lewis (Narnia series and Space trilogy), Francine Rivers (Mark of the Lion trilogy), Ted Dekker (House and Three), J.K. Rowling (Harry Potter series), and J.R.R. Tolkien (The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings series).

4 - What writers have influenced you the most?
         I have been influenced most by three writers. Reading Lucy Montgomery (author of the classic Anne of Green Gables series) has shown me how to find the whimsical elements of everyday life. There is a childlike wonder and simple logic in J.M. Barrie’s work which has influenced the portions of my novels written from a four-year-old’s viewpoint.
         Lastly, Tim Parks’ witty perspective on life in Italy (found in his book Italian Neighbors) cuts through the overly romanticized notions of Italian culture and shows what living in Italy is truly like. Because my novels take place in Tuscany, I found his experiences helpful in creating a realistic setting for my novels.

5 - Do you have a favorite fictional character?  Either from a book or movie or a tv show?
         I greatly admire the character Meliara from Sherwood Smith’s Crown Duel duology. This feisty, strong-spirited heroine is a wonderfully complex character. While she is loyal, creative, determined, and resilient, she is also stubborn, ignorant, prejudiced, and hot-headed. A well-crafted character is both appealing and frustrating to a reader. Meliara’s greatest strength (her devotion to defend the needs of her people) coupled with her judgmental tendencies nearly causes her to fail. It takes a skilled author to turn a character’s greatest strength and into a stumbling block. Very well-written.

6 - What are you working on right now?  Can you tell us something about it?
         My debut Cinnamon novels are romantic dramas set in the rustic town of Pienza, Italy. Both novels are currently in the review process. Here is a brief blurb of Book One:

         When la bella vita falls apart…
        
         Vincent Farina has never liked tourists, despite living in the Renaissance town of Pienza, Italy which draws in visitors by the herd. As the pastry chef of their family café, he is content leaving customer interaction to his fun-loving wife, Angela, and the other quirky members of their family. But when a tragic accident rips his world apart, Vincent must struggle with grief as well as the darkening depression of his four-year-old daughter, Cassia, who carries a secret about her mother’s untimely death.
        
Eleni Michaels is precisely the type of obnoxious tourist Vincent hates most. Personalities and cultures clash when this free-spirited children's author from Kentucky barges her way into the Bella Sole Café. But as fate drives their lives closer together, Vincent recognizes the American’s one redeeming quality—she has made a connection with his daughter.

         With Cassia growing worse, Vincent makes an uneasy truce with this bizarre redhead whose ideas for "helping" often set his teeth on edge. Could Eleni be the key to healing the wounds of the Farina family? Or will her eclectic nature and stubborn attitude rub Vincent's nerves raw?

7 - Is there anything in particular that you do to get in the mood to write, or to get in the ‘zone’?  Any particular pre-writing routines? 
         My writing process involves sipping a chai tea latté (or glass of wine depending on the time of day) and listening to acoustic or classical music as the words work their way through my fingers into my laptop. Chocolate never hurts, either.

8 - Where do you do your writing?
         My usual spot is sitting cross-legged on the comfiest couch in my house. Although, I do sometimes hit up a lovely local café for a change of scenery. This locale also allows me to people-watch over the rim of my coffee cup, which is an excellent way to gather new character ideas.

9 - How do you approach your writing?  i.e. - Do you do outlines?  Character bios?  Etc.?
         I am a planner. There are several worksheets which I work through to establish a strong framework (plot, setting, character breakdowns, etc.). Some people swear by an organic style of story composition, but I believe starting from a strong outline enables me to write creatively in a focused direction. Establishing themes, character goals, key conflicts, a solid story arch, character backstories and quirks, and setting is vital to creating a believable, colorful story.

10 - Do you have any advice for other writers?
         If you want to write, start writing every day. Even when you have no inspiration or motivation to do so, write anyway. Write about your experiences, thoughts, fears, dreams, and trips to the supermarket. Many would-be authors dream about writing but never translate their words onto paper. Even if your first attempts are garbage, garbage can be worked with. Nothing can be done with an empty page.

11 - Are you a morning person or evening person?  Day or night?
         Definitely a night owl. I appreciate the concept of waking up with the sun, but my mind comes alive when the moon is out and the cicadas are singing at my window.

12 - Do you have any pets?
         Unfortunately, I have allergies to dogs and cats. I did grow up with a guinea pig, though. Her name was Fidget, because when we bought her she got loose in the store. That was one fast rodent.

13 - What’s your favorite ‘I need a break from writing’ activity?
         I find baking to be a nice escape. The smell of banana bread and apple crisp baking in the oven does wonders for inspiration. My husband is very supportive of this method.

14 - How do you approach writing sex scenes?  They can range from mild to wild.  Where are you on the mild to wild meter?
         Writing romantic drama, this topic is one which I had to think about carefully. I do write many passion-charged scenes, but I tend to steer away from smutty sex scenes. To me, there is something more intimate about a gentle kiss on the forehead of one’s Beloved than a steamy tryst with an oversexed stranger. My personal opinion. Perhaps I will lose some readers with this stance. That’s fine. Each person is entitled to her own taste in romance.

15 - Do you write in one genre?  Or more than one?
         I enjoy writing slice-of-life stories. I tend to dwell inside the realms of romance and drama with the context of foreign cultures. Besides writing, I am also a teacher and a lifelong learner. Exploring new cultures through my stories is fascinating. Not to mention, culture clash always creates amusing moments for my characters.

16 - Are you self-published or with a publishing house?
         I have not yet published my debut novels and am currently exploring traditional publishing options. However, I am also open to indie publishing if it provides better opportunities. We shall see how it goes.

17 - What are your thoughts on getting a literary agent?
         Literary agents are highly beneficial if you want to publish traditionally. Most reputable publishing houses will not accept unsolicited work, which makes having an agent vital if this is your chosen route. Agents do take a percentage of your revenue; however, if you can find one who does her job well, you will reap the benefits of her connections and expertise.

18 - What about marketing?  How do you approach that area?
         I am building my writing platform as we speak. (For prospective writers, you should consider doing this even before you are published.) Many traditional publishers/agents like to see that writers already have a vehicle for marketing in place. For self-publishers, marketing is vital if you want your work to be seen. My approach is to have a writing website and/or blog established as a home base for promoting your work. I also have author pages on several social media networks.

19 - What about beta readers?  Do you use them?  How many do you have?  Where do you find them?
         I have both alpha readers and beta readers. I use 4 alphas who provide feedback for my work as it is being written and 8 betas who read my work after I have self-edited. With these 8 betas, I let half of them read first and provide feedback. After incorporating their suggestions, I send the revised version to my second wave of betas and see if the noted issues were resolved.
         However, it is important to find the right team of betas. Beta readers should be from your target audience demographic. They should be avid readers who are willing to give an honest critique of your work. Having a few fellow authors/editors/grammar Nazis on board is a plus, too.

20 - What’s your favorite food?
         Mamma’s lasagna (classic recipe passed down through the family). Favorite dessert would be anything involving lemon, caramel, or Oreo. I have a definite sweet tooth.

21 - What’s your favorite color?
         Cerulean blue.

22 - Is there a particular website or facebook page or blog that you, as a writer, find very helpful?
         This author’s website provides witty writing advice from pre-writing through publication:
         This writing blog has many helpful writing hints is:

23 - What’s your favorite time of the year?
         Autumn. There is something nostalgic about freshly-picked apples, hot cider, fuzzy sweaters, campfires, falling leaves, and the smell of cold weather.

24 - What’s your most recent book about?  And where can people buy it?
         My most recent work is my debut novel duology Cinnamon, which I discussed in question 6 above. (I’ll resist being redundant.)

25 - As a writer, what do you feel is your strongest gift or talent or skill that you have, that helps you the most as a writer?
         My strongest gift as a writer is the ability to create realistic characters with unique voices. I spend a lot of time developing my characters. And not just their strengths, weaknesses, and backstory—lifelike characters are so much more complex than that. What is his deepest desire and greatest fear? What is her favorite snack, and how will sharing that snack signal a change in her relationship with another character? How will his culture and personality clash with hers? How will she respond when threatened or bribed? Would he ever bend his moral standards? Does she have nervous tics or tells? How would he handle confrontation? Such questions enable me to craft engaging, complex characters.

26 - Please share some of your links with us - facebook author page, website, where people can find your books –
         I’d love to! You can learn more about my Cinnamon novels, behind-the-scenes blogs and more at: http://www.meganclemons.weebly.com
         You can also connect with me on:
         Twitter: twitter.com/meganclemons555
         Facebook: facebook.com/#!/meganclemons555

Monday, August 26, 2013

Author profile with - Kris Austen Radcliffe

Today we're spending some time with author 


Kris Austen Radcliffe -
 who has kindly agreed to answer our questions for her.

1 - When did you first start writing?

All my life, but I got serious about it three years ago.

2 - Do you read much?  If yes, have you always loved reading?

I read non-fiction science, science fiction, fantasy, urban fantasy, and paranormal romance. 

3 -  Who’s your favorite author?  What’s your favorite book?

Ann McCaffrey’s Pern novels sparked my love of mixing fantasy and science fiction.  Neil Gaiman, for his flow and his exquisite character building.  Ann Rice, because of her brilliant setting and environmental descriptions.  I can’t say I have a favorite book.

4 - What writers have influenced you the most?

See above.

5 - Do you have a favorite fictional character?  Either from a book or movie or a tv show?

When I was a kid, my favorite character was F’nor, from the Pern books.  Nowadays, I’m partial to Cullen Bohonnon from “Hell on Wheels.”  Excellent character who’s written and acted superbly. 

6 - What are you working on right now?  Can you tell us something about it?

Right now, I’m working on “Fifth of Blood”, the book 3 of the Fate ~ Fire ~ Shifter ~ Dragon series.  Like book 2, “Flux of Skin”, it picks up right after the events of the book before it and follows Rysa and Ladon through the final trials of her activation. 

7 - Is there anything in particular that you do to get in the mood to write, or to get in the ‘zone’?  Any particular pre-writing routines? 

Getting my little one on the bus is first thing.  I need quiet to write.  Then it’s making sure I have enough caffeine in my system to form coherent sentences.

8 - Where do you do your writing?

During the summer, I write in my office, as long as I have help with my little one.  During the school year, I tend to write at the kitchen table next to my big dining room windows.

9 - How do you approach your writing?  i.e. - Do you do outlines?  Character bios?  Etc.?

I sort of outline.  I know my major scenes—the midpoint, the black moment, the climax—and I aim my characters at them.  Other than that, no.  I never stick to an outline, so for me it’s a waste of time.

10 - Do you have any advice for other writers?

Write every day.  Write the best book you can.  Then write another.  And another.

11 - Are you a morning person or evening person?  Day or night?

I’m by nature a night person, but my nature and my daughter’s school schedule do not coordinate, so I’ve been forced to become a morning person.

12 - Do you have any pets?

One kitty, Midnight, aka “Handsome Cat.”

13 - What’s your favorite ‘I need a break from writing’ activity?

Writing is my break from everything else. 

14 - How do you approach writing sex scenes?  They can range from mild to wild.  Where are you on the mild to wild meter?

I’m not graphically hot, at least not with the characters I’m writing right now.  It depends on the POV.  When I’m writing Rysa, the love scenes are more about her emotions than the sex itself, but that will change as the series moves forward and she becomes more sure of herself.  When I’m writing Ladon, the scenes are more explicit, but only because he uses a different vocabulary. 

I do have a couple of Erotic Romance stories I’m planning on writing.  They will be hotter than what I’m writing right now, because that’s the story, and the characters.

15 - Do you write in one genre?  Or more than one?

I like the science fiction and fantasy sandbox and I don’t think I’ll be moving out of it anytime soon, except for the erotic romance novellas I have planned.

16 - Are you self-published or with a publishing house?

I have my own publishing house, Six Talon Sign Media.  Six Talon Sign has three imprints:  The main Six Talon Sign, which publishes the Fate ~ Fire ~ Shifter ~ Dragon series; Talon One, which publishes my science fiction; and Six Love, which will publish my erotic romance. 

17 - What are your thoughts on getting a literary agent?

Don’t bother.  I suggest reading Kristine Kathryn Rusch’s blog for a much better explanation as to why than I can give.  http://kriswrites.com/

18 - What about marketing?  How do you approach that area?

I’m an introvert, so I hire help, including Vicki at Innovative Online Tours, http://www.iobooktours.com/.  She’s a big help.  I’m also working with someone new (uh-hum) who’s helping me with the social media aspect of promotion.  There’s also some traditional, publisher-oriented promotion stuff that I’m learning right now.

19 - What about beta readers?  Do you use them?  How many do you have?  Where do you find them?

I’m weird about beta readers.  Part of the problem is that I write too fast for beta readers to be of any true use to me.  I can’t sit around and wait for people to finish, so I work with a content editor whom I LOVE, Annetta Ribken at http://wordwebbing.com/).  Annetta’s a professional.  She understands my process and deadlines and working with her is by far the best solution for me. 

I also work with a copy editor I know and trust (Terry Koch at http://beyondgrammar.com/).  After Terry’s done, the manuscripts go to my “Proofing Crew” who read for typos.  They’re the closest thing I have to beta readers.

20 - What’s your favorite food?

I have all sorts of dietary issues—no dairy, no gluten, no this, no that—so my favorite food is what I can eat that won’t make me sick.

21 - What’s your favorite color?

Dragon.  *winks*

22 - Is there a particular website or facebook page or blog that you, as a writer, find very helpful?


23 - What’s your favorite time of the year?

Early September.  School starts, the weather cools, and I get back to writing 5000 words a day.

24 - What’s your most recent book about?  And where can people buy it?

Here are the blurbs for “Games of Fate” and “Flux of Skin”:

Games of Fate:

Contains Adult Sexual Content and some violent imagery.

Rysa Torres misses information.  Loses concentration.  Her attention problems randomize her life but she pushes forward anyway, doing the best she can—until monsters activate a part of her she didn’t know she had. 

As visions of the future whip inside her head, Rysa realizes the truth:  She’s a Fate. 

And she will set fire to the world.

All her options explode.  Her family ripped away, what little control she had destroyed, Rysa is left with one choice:  Will she die to stop the coming flames, or will she allow the man and the dragon she loves to die in her place?

Games of Fate begins Fate ~ Fire ~ Shifter ~ Dragon, a New Adult Urban Fantasy series with Strong Romantic Elements by Kris Austen Radcliffe.  Set in the open spaces of America, the series takes Rysa and Ladon—and Ladon’s companion beast, Dragon—through a landscape punctuated by unfamiliar creatures:  Fates with the ability to see past, present, and future.  Ghouls called Burners who devour with fire and acid.  Shifters who shape much more than their bodies.  And two dragons who speak with color and pattern.

It starts here, now, with one young woman’s fight against a burning future—and against the death of the man she loves.

Flux of Skin:

Contains Adult Sexual Content and some violent imagery.

Flux of Skin, book two of the Fate ~ Fire ~ Shifter ~ Dragon series, picks up Ladon and Rysa’s story four hours after the events of book one, Games of Fate.

How many loves must Ladon watch die?

Ladon thought he controlled the rage.  He thought he left his past—and his violence—behind.  But the Shifters take Rysa and now no one is safe…

Ladon wanted a gentle life.  But century after century, the call to battle malicious Fates, Shifters, and Burners always won.  The world needed him.  So he fought.

War took its toll and now, sometimes, his scars show.  When it happens, Ladon ruptures—body, mind, and soul.  And the world pays.

But he’s found a new way:  a modern life with his beloved Rysa.  He won’t give her up.  Not because of family strife.  Not because of the issues twisting her life into a raging cyclone.  And definitely not because of war—until a new group of Shifters rain death onto everyone he loves.

Every Shifter understands fury.  Now they learn rupture.

Flux of Skin, book 2 of the Fate ~ Fire ~ Shifter ~ Dragon series, a New Adult Urban Fantasy series with Strong Romantic Elements by Kris Austen Radcliffe, continues the story of Rysa and Ladon.  Set in the open spaces of America, the series takes Rysa and Ladon—and Ladon’s companion beast, Dragon—through a landscape punctuated by unfamiliar creatures:  Fates with the ability to see past, present, and future.  Ghouls called Burners who devour with fire and acid.  Shifters who shape much more than their bodies.  And two dragons who speak with color and pattern.

And links:

All titles are also available at Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and Smashwords.

25 - As a writer, what do you feel is your strongest gift or talent or skill that you have, that helps you the most as a writer?

I’m visual.  My training is as a filmmaker and script writer.  I’m also a photographer.  It can be a problem sometimes because you can’t let imagery get in the way of deep POV, but I’m good at “showing.”

26 - Please share some of your links with us - facebook author page, website, where people can find your books –

The Kris Austen Radcliffe Street Team:
Most of the fun happens on the Facebook Group:  http://www.facebook.com/groups/TeamKAR/
Information at my web site:  http://krisaustenradcliffe.sixtalonsign.com/fate-fire-shifter-dragon-street-team-info/

Contact me:

I’m also a photographer:
Six Talon Sign Media LLC Photography:  http://www.sixtalonsign.com/photo-galleries/

Other contact points:
She has a Twitter account, but it’s the least reliable way to contact her: @KrisRadcliffe

Book Spotlight - Apart From Love by Uvi Poznansky

Book Spotlight -- Apart From Love 
by Uvi Poznansky




I could feel Lenny—whose name I didn’t know yet—like, staring at me. It made me hot all over. For a minute there, I could swear he was gonna to ask me how old I was—but he didn’t.
And so, to avoid blushing, I turned to him and I said, boldly, “It’s a crime?”
And he said, “What?”
And I said, “To be sixteen. It’s a crime, you think?”
And he said, “Back in the days when I was young and handsome, that was no crime.”
And I countered with, “Handsome you still are!”
He had no comeback for that, and me, I didn’t have nothing with which I could follow it up. So I asked, “So? What kind of cone for you?” but that woman cut in, ‘cause I was still holding her three-scoops tower of pistachio nut on a sugar cone. And she started to cry out, and like, demand some attention here, because hey, she was first in line and how about whipped cream? Or some of that shredded coconut?
So I smiled at her, in my most cool and polite manner, and squeezed out a big dollop of whipped cream, which was awesome, ‘cause it calmed her down right away.
And I scattered some of them coconut flakes all over—quite a heap—and went even further, adding a cherry on top. At last, I raised the thing to my lips, because at this point, it was starting to drip already.
Then, winking at him, I passed my tongue over the top, and all around the ice cream at the rim of the cone, filling my whole mouth and, just to look sexy, also licking the tips of my fingers. Then I came around the counter, swaying my hips real pretty, and steadying myself over the wobbly high heels. I came right up to him, and before he could guess what kind of trouble I had cooked up in my head, I kissed him—so sweet and so long—on his lips, to the shouts and outcries of the offended customer.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Author profile - Deborah Nam-Krane

Hey all!  Welcome to our first author profile!
Our first author profile is with -- Deborah Nam-Krane


http://www.amazon.com/Smartest-Girl-Room-Pioneers-ebook/dp/B00C3ZRHWY/

And so without further blabber from me, on to the questions and Deborah's answers.

1 - When did you first start writing?

When I was eight, but I didn't have something in my hands until I was eleven. I was a late bloomer.

2 - Do you read much?  If yes, have you always loved reading?

I read A LOT now, in part because I'm also a book reviewer (over a decade on Amazon, and now also on my blog). I hated reading until I was about nine, and then something clicked. It was that summer that I discovered Nancy Drew, Greek mythology- and Archie comic books. I've had something ambitious to read ever since.

3 -  Who’s your favorite author?  What’s your favorite book?

I am the same way about authors as I am about musical acts: sometimes I love their stuff, sometimes I can't stand it. I think A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens is one of the best things ever written, but The Old Curiosity Shoppe made me roll my eyes. If I have to choose, Nathaniel Hawthorne- I love his novels and I love his short stories. But if I can have two then I love the graphic novelist George O'Connor like a drug. (Did I mention he writes about mythology?)

My favorite book... again, mythology nut that I am, it would have to be Roberto Calasso's The Marriage of Cadmus and Harmony. One of the best books I have ever read.

4 - What writers have influenced you the most?

In a weird way, Camille Paglia through her book Sexual Personae. I had thought before I read it that if I wanted to write I had to tell stories in a certain way, but through her book I saw that it was not only possible but desirable to make my characters as multi-layered as possible.

5 - Do you have a favorite fictional character?  Either from a book or movie or a tv show?

Right now? Olivia Pope on Scandal. Yes, she's super powerful, smart and caring, but she's also willing to go to the mat and take great risks to protect the people she cares about. Here's hoping people will say the same about my female characters.

6 - What are you working on right now?  Can you tell us something about it?

As of this writing, I am putting the finishing touches on my second release. The editing is done- I think!- and by the grace of god I managed to format everything. Now I'm wondering about what links I need to add, whether to add a section bringing readers from the first book up to speed, etc.

I've also just started editing the third book in the series. I'll let you know as soon as I'm done!

7 - Is there anything in particular that you do to get in the mood to write, or to get in the ‘zone’?  Any particular pre-writing routines?

It's really important that I not be too tired, and in general it's a good idea for me to keep up my Pilates and yoga practices. If nothing else, taking away the little aches and pains removes a distraction, and teaching myself to focus and relax also helps me get to my zone more quickly.

But really, if you give me a chunk of time and my computer, I can pretty easily go as needed.

8 - Where do you do your writing?

Anywhere I can comfortably sit for an extended period of time without too much noise.

9 - How do you approach your writing?  i.e. - Do you do outlines?  Character bios?  Etc.?

I have a very clear picture of who each character is before I start writing, and I know how the story begins and ends and most of the highlights in the middle. I plan out pretty thoroughly, but I still leave room for surprises my characters might throw at me. Having said that, even if you know where the story begins, you might not always know where the book begins. It's very important, I think, to take care where you start the book and what you tell in or out of sequence.

10 - Do you have any advice for other writers?

I never suffer from writer's block because I always just keep writing no matter what comes out. My feeling has always been that it's easier to edit out garbage later than it is to stare at a blank page.

11 - Are you a morning person or evening person?  Day or night?

Definitely a morning person- and definitely not a coffee person. Tea for me, if anything.

12 - Do you have any pets?

No! First of all, I live in a very small space with my four children. Second of all I'm allergic. Finally, I'm just not an animal person. I'm a vegan and I don't want to eat animals, but I also don't want to play with them.

13 - What’s your favorite ‘I need a break from writing’ activity?

Listening to music, singing- sometimes even drawing. I think it's important to let certain parts of your brain rest so they can come back fresher later.

14 - How do you approach writing sex scenes?  They can range from mild to wild.  Where are you on the mild to wild meter?

I'm on the mild side, definitely. I don't want to write graphic sex scenes, at all, and most of my books aren't about sex, even if people are having it. I also think using your imagination is much more arousing than people give it credit for.

15 - Do you write in one genre?  Or more than one?

My series is a combination of Chick Lit and Romance, but it also has some strong and important male characters. I have four already written, and I'm planning on bringing them back in a completely different kind of book. Still about relationships, but on a bigger canvas and with more import. With those same characters, I'm also toying with the idea of branching into a middle grade series, but I'm still working on that one.

On a completely different note, I'm also working on a non-fiction book about urban homeschooling on a budget. It's mostly written now, but it still needs a little spiffing before I bring it out.

16 - Are you self-published or with a publishing house?

I am self-published and very happy about that.

17 - What are your thoughts on getting a literary agent?

Not something I'm interested in, but I think it all depends on the agent. Some of them are really wonderful, or so I'm told, and do a lot of work for their clients. If you can get one of those, you should.

18 - What about marketing?  How do you approach that area?

I am constantly re-evaluating my marketing efforts- you have to. What worked really well for someone a year and a half ago might not work for someone else. I think we should all be focused on getting the basics right- a good blog, interaction on social media and a newsletter- but everything else is up in the air. For a long time, enrolling in KDP Select was a no-brainer; now as the number of ebooks increases, maybe it's not. Free offerings, no matter where you are, can also work- but sometimes they'll bomb. Be open to trying things but don't be married to them.

I would say there are two rules: first, network, which is also known as making friends, and share ideas. Second, make sure on social media and your blog that you appeal not only to other writers but also to readers. While our readers might like to see where we're writing or what we're drinking or snacking on while we do so, they probably don't want to hear us talk about our *process*. (Most other writers might not either.) I think most readers do want to hear about where we got our ideas, what our characters are like and hear about the themes behind our stories and why we think they're relevant. I think they also want to hear our thoughts on popular books, especially in our genre or category. But in general they should be spared as much insider baseball as possible.

19 - What about beta readers?  Do you use them?  How many do you have?  Where do you find them?

I do use beta readers, but I think I overused them for my first book. I had something like 8 or 9; when I told a successful indie author I know, I could tell she was thinking, "Are you nuts?" I got a lot of confusing, conflicting feedback. For this second one I "only" used three or four. I did ask some friends and relatives, but I also asked other writers I know- yet another reason why plugging and meeting people is important.

20 - What’s your favorite food?

Right now I am loving my strawberry almond milk smoothies.

21 - What’s your favorite color?

I really can't choose. The closest I come is light green with pink accents.

22 - Is there a particular website or facebook page or blog that you, as a writer, find very helpful?

There are a bunch. I met a lot of people via Fellow Writers on Facebook, and a friend I made on Twitter hooked me into Indie Writers Unite, also on Facebook. A friend from Fellow Writers introduced me to The Official Chick Lit Group, and those writers introduced me to Chick Lit Goddesses. I've found helpful information on all of them.

As far as websites, I've gleaned a lot of useful information from Dear Author and Catherine, Caffeinated.

23 - What’s your favorite time of the year?

Autumn, hands down.

24 - What’s your most recent book about?  And where can people buy it?

My debut novel is The Smartest Girl in the Room, and until September 26th it's available exclusively through Amazon (it will be on Smashwords very shortly after that). It's about a very ambitious college student who's trying to get her degree as quickly as possible for a couple of reasons. The last thing she needs is to fall in love, but that's just what happens when her best friend introduces her to Mitch Graham. But he has to choose between Emily and a trip to Ireland that he's been looking forward to for years, and he doesn't realize until too late that he made the wrong choice. Mitch has to prove to Emily that he's worth a second chance, but she might have a little bit too much to do between working hard at school and protecting her friends to do so.

25 - As a writer, what do you feel is your strongest gift or talent or skill that you have, that helps you the most as a writer?

I've always been told that I write dialogue well, and it's something I enjoy. I think I also set up a mystery pretty well. Everyone who has read my second book was shocked by the ending, but when you look back over it you can see the clues.

26 - Please share some of your links with us - facebook author page, website, where people can find your books --


Thursday, August 15, 2013

Author profiles are here!

Hey all!

I know postings in this blog have been on the lean side lately.  I've been posting my reviews in my other blog:

JD's Leisure Zone
http://jdslzone.blogspot.com/

So stop by there to check out my book reviews.  What I've been working on for this blog is ready to launch, and that is author profiles.

I posted several posts around on facebook, asking what people did and didn't like in the way of author interview questions.  I got lots of helpful comments, and I saved all this information; then I used it to put together my list of author profile questions.

It worked out to be a list of 26 questions.
Any author who is interested in a profile can contact me via the facebook page for this blog:
https://www.facebook.com/bknwjor