Category Archives: publishing

Errand Girl of the Undead, Open for Business!

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Happy book birthday to The Trouble with Werewolves! For a short story, it certainly took me a long time to get this one out into the world.  I think a lot of the reasoning was because I wasn’t completely done with the series and wanted to hold off. I’m still not done (the 3rd book is nearing completion but has a ways to go yet) but I figured if I published then it would push me to get it done.

I really enjoyed writing this story, I think because Ellie’s a tough chick but with a definitely vulnerable side to her. She’s had an interesting upbringing but still wanted to be “normal”. Like most teens, she is trying to find herself, love, and a great pair of jeans to highlight her ass…ets.

I hope you enjoy her antics as much as I enjoyed writing about them!

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Ellie Weston may look like a blonde Barbie wanna-be, but call by her full name of Elvira and you’ll find she can take you down with nothing more than a paperclip and a hair tie. Having been raised by an ancient vampire, a faerie and a demon hardly makes her a normal teen. She’s trained in self-defense, with a bit of magic thrown in, but those talents are going to waste as she picks up dry cleaning, walks three-headed dogs and collects grave dust by the light of the full moon.

Her job as an errand girl to the undead–and other paranormal creatures–has kept her busy and relatively safe, until she receives a job to hunt down a rogue werewolf who is brutally butchering norms in her father’s territory. As she tries to track down the bloodthirsty beast, she finds the clues aren’t quite adding up. Will her wiles be enough to keep her safe and solve the mystery, or will she become the next victim of these ghastly crimes?

 

Pick up a copy for 99 cents!

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Trouble-Werewolves-Errand-Girl-Undead-ebook/dp/B01CC5FSF2

Nook: pending (check back!)

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The Possibilities of Transformation

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You have probably heard of a lot of  books being transformed into movies, which is a great thing, but it’s not the only possible transformation your stories can take. There are several great series out there that are also being turned into gorgeous graphic novels. The stories are the same but you get to see your favorite characters turned into visual works of art.

MMMA good friend of mine, writer and artist, Sasha Raught is in the process of doing just this, changing one of his great short stories into a graphic novel series and needs the help of Kickstarter (and you!) to get it going.

You may have recognized his name from the acknowledgement page in Heavyweight.  I met Sasha years ago at a a NaNoWriMo write in I set up when I moved back to Jersey.  He came to every write in and we clicked as writing partners and decided to continue to meet after NaNo was over.  He introduced me to the writing group I’ve belonged to for the past several years and he’s always around to offer opinions, advice and encouragement. Sasha is not only an amazingly creative and entertaining author, but a fantastic artist whose work deserves to be out there more than it already is.

While his Kickstarter video will tell you, it’s not his first time in the sandbox, it is his first time to be working for himself (so to speak) rather than doing the work others are asking of him.  He has free reign for concept, design, story, etc. but he needs YOUR help to get this amazing story out there to the masses.

Here’s some info on the project.  If it strikes your interest, please stop by Sasha’s Kickstarter page (click HERE!) and consider donating to the help this great piece of graphic literature  get out into the world.

“Aurturio Benerzini and the Three Impossible Tasks is a 120 to 130 page B&W and half tone illustrated graphic novel. It is the adaptation of a short novel that I wrote a number of years ago. The story itself is a faerie tale type story, much in the tradition of Sinbad and Aladdin. It takes place in ancient Arabia and is written in a style similar to the Arabian Nights, but with more startling and surprising twists.”

 

Looking Back at Where You’ve Been

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blue skiesYou’ve toiled for years, writing story after story.   You’ve sent them out to agents or publishers, you’ve self published or you’ve hid them on a shelf in the back of your closet where no one will ever read them.

Each book is a journey, and more than the journey your characters take.  It’s the trek you, as the author, takes while honing your craft.  It’s the trip to tell the story itself. It’s the return expedition to polish the tracks you’ve put down.  It’s the vacation while someone else reads it and the outing to the padded room while you worry about what they are thinking. It’s navigating social media to promote yourself and your work and it’s the higher ground you stand on when people try to bring you down because of what you write or how you’ve decided to get your work out there.

As we grow, so do both our writing  and our life in general. You may come to find you no longer like what you’ve written in the past.  You may think your style amateurish or even be embarrassed by the genre you’ve written (Monster erotica, anyone?) . While it’s okay to feel that way and you don’t need to necessarily promote them like you used to, it would be a disservice to you, and any reader who enjoyed those books, to hide those books away and pretend like they never existed.

Those stories show how far you’ve come. They are the proof that you’ve grown and how your hard work has paid off.  Use them as examples of what worked and what didn’t. Share those findings with others without shame. Everyone has to start somewhere and very few start at the top. They have to work to get there, just as you have. Take pride in that.

What have you learned from your earlier work?

Happy Birthday, Heavyweight!

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book-bdayIt’s finally here, release day! Huzzah!  The actual publication process has been quick but this has been a long time coming since my fingers first touched the keys to pen the tale of Ian and Julian.

When I finish the first draft all I could think was that I really wanted this story to reach as many people as possible and I knew, from self pubbing two other books, that I wanted to shop this one out to agents and small presses.  I had entered a couple contests and several agents showed interest, asking for fulls, but it always came back “Sorry, just not for us.”  I got good advice along the way, but I’ll admit it was a  bit discouraging.  When my writing buddy, Patty, told me Dreamspinner Press had a young adult division, I decided I’d give it one more shot before seriously considering self publishing the book.

I’m so glad I did!  The fine folks at Harmony Ink have done a great job polishing my story and giving it a beautiful cover. I know it’s better than I could have done on my own and I’m super excited that they will work to get Heavyweight into libraries as well as online bookstores, so that the story I love so much can reach a much larger audience.Heavyweight birthday

Thanks to everyone who had a hand in making this possible! Without all of you, Heavyweight would not be ready to release into the wild!

I hope you guys will enjoy reading Ian’s journey as much as I enjoyed writing it and bringing it to life. If you do me the honor of reading the story, please consider leaving a review on Amazon or Goodreads or where ever you purchased the book from. I would be eternally grateful!

Where to purchase Heavyweight:

Dreamspinner
Amazon

Barnes & Noble, iTunes and others to follow!

Blurb:

Secrets. Their weight can be crushing, but their release can change everything—and not necessarily for the better. Ian is no stranger to secrets. Being a gay teen in a backwater southern town, Ian must keep his orientation under wraps, especially since he spends a lot of time with his hands all over members of the same sex, pinning their sweaty, hard bodies to the wrestling mat.

When he’s trying not to stare at teammates in the locker room, he’s busy hiding another secret—that he starves himself so he doesn’t get bumped to the next weight class.

Enter Julian Yang, an Adonis with mesmerizing looks and punk rocker style. Befriending the flirtatious artist not only raises suspicion among his classmates, but leaves Ian terrified he’ll give in to the desires he’s fought to ignore.

As secrets come to light, Ian’s world crumbles. Disowned, defriended,  and deserted by nearly everyone, Ian’s one-way ticket out of town is revoked, leaving him trapped in a world he hates—and one that hates him back.

Like What You Read? Review it!

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In the world of Indie and small press publishing, one of the biggest obstacles to deal with is trying to get reviews.  I’ve discussed the unseemly ways some people have gone about it in the past: Paying for 5 star reviews, reviewing competitors with low star ratings so your own looks better, etc.

There are always friends and family, but often, those reviews are chock full of all the good and none of the “not so good” (we won’t say bad because I know you folks aren’t putting bad stuff out there, right? ^_^).  While that is lovely and of course we love them for it, I know I get a little suspicious where there are only glowing 5 star reviews and nothing else.  You need a well rounded grouping of reviews.  It’s guaranteed that not everyone is going to love your work. That’s just the way it goes. Art is subjective, right?  So no doubt there are some out there who have read and didn’t really enjoy it.  Don’t think you need to keep that info to yourself.  While you don’t have to be mean or rude about it, your honest opinion is more helpful than you think. It’s not just good star ratings that draws attention to your books. Your book can be considered popular, even if it has a ton of bad reviews, because obviously people are buying it and reading it.

I understand, in this day and age, people find themselves lucky just to have the time to read, but you really don’t need to do an in depth review.  Amazon only needs twenty short words to qualify as a review.  How long would it take you to type up twenty words? Less than a minute? Obviously,  a little more would help other prospective readers, but something is better than nothing.

If you really enjoy your authors and want to see them keep putting out books you love, support them by reviewing.  Even if you get books from the library, you can review them on sites like Goodreads, which many readers use as well before deciding to buy/read something new.

It’s a small thing you can do that can help make a huge difference in an author’s success. Consider taking the time to share your thoughts, regardless of whether you loved it, hated it or were indifferent about it.  The authors will thank you.

How often do you leave reviews for the books you read?