Sunday, June 30, 2013

NEW RELEASE - Whispers of Razari by Cindy C. Bennet and Jeffrey Moore

Whispers of Razari by Cindy C. Bennett and Jeffrey Moore

Blurb:
When sixteen year old Olivia Adams wakes from a horrible car accident that killed her parents, she knows she’s something different. Olivia died, and now the soul inhabiting her body needs to find out who - and what - she is. A glimpse of a world called Razari burning is the only clue to her previous existence—a tragic memory, sparking events that endanger the people helping her.

Jacobi McKenzie has lived in Crescent, Montana for more years than he can remember, even though he's only seventeen. He's been waiting, but for what he isn't sure. Jacobi recognizes Olivia for what she is before she's even aware of it herself and the effect she has on him threatens to expose his true identity--a thing he’s worked hard to conceal.

They come together in an explosion of emotion that neither of them is supposed to feel. As Jacobi fights for Olivia's life, protecting her from those who would use her for their own selfish purposes, together they unravel the mystery surrounding the destruction of their race.

Sales links:

Excerpt:

The smell of blood, iodine, peppermint, and ammonia blending with sweat is my first sense of awareness. These are scents I recognize. A dozen other foreign smells seem to be a mix of different elements. If I could concentrate and study the odors, I’m certain I’d be able to break them down into their base elements, but the noise is too distracting. I’m not as good with sound as I am with smell. I can make out several distinct voices and artificial sounds that are probably machines. If I could open my eyes, I’d be able to connect the noises with the smells. I think my eyes are fastened shut.

Slowly, I begin to explore the body of the host I’m in. I come upon damaged areas that cause intense pain and I quickly retreat from these areas. The body is broken in several places. I sense voices come from those repairing the host body. A name comes to me: Olivia. With effort, I crack open my eyes. Gauzy images of people work on me. A tall man has his hands in Olivia’s body and he speaks softly, as if afraid of startling anyone. I retreat and turn to exploring Olivia’s memories.

Reliving Olivia’s life from her earliest memory is instinctual for me. I think I’ve existed for a long time. Parasite. I find the word while searching through Olivia’s memories—a parasite is what these people would think of me if they knew what I was. But a parasite by definition lives in or on a host and steals everything, giving nothing in return. I’m not really like that. I entered Olivia shortly after her soul departed. Her body’s not the ideal place for me to be, being only sixteen earth years old and badly broken, but I was drawn to her. What made me choose her? I can’t remember. Typically I acquire a host much younger and definitely less broken—at least, that feels like the thing I’d do.

As I’m learning about Olivia, her culture, and the society in which she lives, it sparks the knowledge that I don’t remember where I came from. I know I’m not human, and I know what I need to do to exist in Olivia, but why I’m here eludes me. With that comes the idea that my kind only moves to a different world as a last resort, so I figure something terrible must have happened not only to me—or actually my former host—but the world from which I came.



Bennett is the YA author of several books. She lives in Utah with her husband and two daughters. Both of her sons have married, giving her two more daughters (in-law). She loves gooey cookies, dark chocolate, and cheese popcorn. She hates housework and cooking, and has no plans to become a domestic goddess. She occasionally co-hosts a geek podcast with her son, called Geek Revolution Radio. Her favorite pastime is riding her Harley.

Find more about Cindy at www.cindycbennett.com
Geek Revolution Radio www.geekrevolutionradio.com


Moore was born in Germany. As a military brat, much of his childhood was spent abroad, growing up in Germany on military installations. He subsequently enlisted in the military and served for ten years as an army pilot. While in the military, he lived in Italy and South Korea and deployed to many European countries. He has traveled to Australia, Japan, Singapore and most European countries. His experiences and contact with many different cultures helps form some of the elements in his stories. He currently works for a global IT company and lives in Massachusetts.

Find more about Jeffery and his work at www.jefferyemoore.com

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Summer Book Crush Sale!!!

Hot sun, hot sand, cool drinks, dark tans. Ahhhh. But your summer won’t be complete until you land a new BOOK BOYFRIEND, right? Lucky for you, we’ve got you covered!  
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  SUMMER BOOK CRUSH offers 50+ titles in many genres. This means 50+ chances to (fictitiously) fall in love. And the best part? Each of these gems is only 99¢, but for a limited time only. The SUMMER BOOK CRUSH event starts on June 26th and ends (yes, even the best things in life end at some point) on June 28th. So don't wait up! Mingle with our BOOK BOYFRIENDS and invite all your friends to participate too. There are plenty of BOOK BOYS to share!
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  Find your summer’s fling between the pages of a book. And don't stop on one - after all we have many BOOK BOYFRIENDS for you to mingle with.
* HAPPY READING * HAPPY SUMMER *
 

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

New Release! Wandering by Heather Sutherlin

When you’ve travelled between worlds, there’s nowhere left to go but home.

Rory has never been so cold in her life. But the biting wind only reminds her of another pain that grows more intense with each passing day. Each night Jaron’s beautiful voice sings in her dreams, and each day her footsteps draw her closer to his side. Danger and intrigue at every turn, no distance is too far when you’re returning for true love.

Rin has spent the last five years searching for Rory across two worlds. Now a series of visions have him convinced he’s growing closer to finding her. But when Rory slips through another portal, taking his visions with her, he finds himself back at square one. To find her now he’ll need the help of an old friend and a little otherworldly magic.  This time he intends to bring The Wanderer home for good.


Wandering
Available on Kindle, Nook, Kobo, and iTunes
June 25th, 2013

Links for purchase:

An Excerpt from Wandering:

      Sometimes I think I've seen her face more times than my own.

 Tonight she stands on top of a snow- covered mountain with the wind in her hair.  Her eyes crinkle at the corners as she squints into the distance. She shifts her stance, leaning, her body reaching forward and I can almost feel the racing of her heart as the wind billows around her, lifting her cloak and whipping her hair into her eyes. It reminds her of something she once felt, something powerful.  Blood pounds in my ears and for a moment we are connected, The Wanderer and I. Her pain, her longing, they choke me. She holds her breath as the wind grows stronger. It pushes against her so that her footing slips. I want to shout to her, warn her that she might fall, but I can almost hear her thoughts. She hopes it will carry her away. To bring her back.  

The wind whips around her, swirling ice and snow at her feet and she begins to cry. Her tears freeze as they slide down her cheeks.  She doesn’t cry from fear or pain.  Not even the bitter, endless cold could cause her tears.  No, she cries because it is only the wind.

***
 I woke up, panting, covered in sweat.  Turning over, I clenched my eyes shut in a desperate attempt to bring the images back into focus. 

“It’s no use,” I groaned.  I knew it wouldn't work.  It never did.  She was gone.  That one little glimpse was all I would get –for now.

The visions began the very day we returned home from Rutahn, the world beyond the portal. I fell asleep on my aunt’s couch and probably hadn’t even started snoring when her face filled my mind. She was lying in the corner of a little hut, bundled in blankets and furs. I remember how she shivered, like she was trying to shake off her own skin. Her cheeks were flushed a bright red and she gasped for air, tossing in her makeshift little bed. An arm with skin the color of caramel reached toward her and wiped her face with a wet cloth. That’s when I realized she was sick. I woke up in a panic, my heart racing. I had fallen asleep afraid she might be dead and now instead of feeling relieved that she was alive, I was more afraid than ever. We still didn’t know where Rory was, but now I knew she was very sick. I worried incessantly about her after that. I dreamed of her nearly every night, gathering bits and pieces of information, clues as to where she might be.  After that, the dreams gradually increased in frequency, and then grew more intense.  Now, instead of just seeing Rory, I could feel a little of her thoughts, her emotions.  Most of the time it was a relief.  I saw her safe. I watched her grow strong again. I even saw her smile once or twice. 

Then, there were nights like this one.  Nights where I could sense her terror, her despair, the aching loneliness or desperate longing for those she had lost. I would lie there helpless, watching her cry deep, heart wrenching sobs and I would wake up with my pillow wet, my face covered in sympathetic tears. Those were the nights that weighed on me.  Visions like this one often forced me out of bed and back into my research. It was impossible to sleep knowing she was out there somewhere in pain and longing to find a way home. That’s why I keep searching. For five endless years I’ve searched and I’ll keep searching until I find her and bring the Wanderer home.

Wandering is the sequel to Seen by Heather Sutherlin.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Author Spotlight: Cindy C. Bennett, author of Geek Girl

Author Bio 
Cindy C Bennett was born and raised in beautiful Salt Lake City, growing up in the shadows of the majestic Rocky Mountains. She and her husband raised two daughters, two sons, and a plethora of pets without wandering far from the fold. They’ve now added two beautiful daughters-in-law to their family. In addition to writing YA fiction, she volunteers her time working with teen girls between the ages of 12-18, all of whom she finds to be beautiful, fascinating creatures that constantly inspire her stories. She developed a love of writing in high-school English, when a teacher introduced her to the joys of escaping reality for ten minutes each day in writing. When she’s not writing, reading or answering emails (notice there is no mention of cleaning, cooking, or anything vaguely domestic) she can often times be found riding her Harley through the beautiful canyons near her home. Learn more at www.cindycbennett.com.
Social Media Sites 

Jen’s teenage life of rebelling and sneaking out is growing stale. In an effort to combat her boredom, Jen makes a bet to turn Trevor, a nice geek, into a “bad boy.” Unexpectedly, she is pulled into Trevor’s world of sci-fi movies, charity work, and even--ugh!--bowling. Jen discovers that hanging out with Trevor isn't so bad after all.
But when Trevor finds out about the wager, all bets are off.
17-year-old Kate has lived her whole life in abject poverty, with an alcoholic father and drug-addicted mother, who severely abuses Kate. At school, her second-hand clothing marks her as a target. Her refusal to stand up for herself makes her the recipient of her classmates taunts and bullying. That is, until Henry returns.
Henry Jamison moved away six years earlier, just as he and Kate had begun to develop feelings for one another. He returns to find the bright, funny, outgoing girl he had known now timidly hiding in corners, barely speaking to anyone around her, suspicious of even him.
Kate can't figure out what game Henry is playing with her - for surely his attempts at friendship are a game. What else would the gorgeous, popular boy from her past want with her?
Niahm (pronounced Neeve) Parker is thoroughly content with her life in the small town of Goshen. When Shane Coleman and his nephew Sam move into town, it's the biggest event to happen in as long as anyone can remember.
Sam is drawn to Niahm against his will. He'd prefer to not be bound to this angry, stubborn, unlikeable girl. For Immortals, love is not only forbidden, but dangerous for her.
Niahm finds herself attracted to the tall, copper-headed boy, who becomes her friend and then her support when tragedy strikes. Soon, she begins to realize that there may be more to Sam than she ever suspected... much more. But what he truly is, she can't begin to imagine.
Rapunzel is not your average teenager. For one thing, she has a serious illness that keeps her inside the mysterious Gothel Mansion. And for another, her hair is 15 feet long. Not to mention that she’s also the key to ultimately saving the world from certain destruction.
But then she meets a boy named Fane, who changes all she has ever known, and she decides to risk everything familiar to find out who she really is.
Filled with romance, adventure, and mystery, Rapunzel Untangled is one story you won’t want to put down. Discover the true meaning of love and friendship in this modern twist to the classic fairytale.

Enchanted Fairytales is a retelling of five different fairytales from the imagination of Cindy C Bennett.
Beautiful Beast: Though she knows it's cruel, Calli agrees to accompany her friends to Monster House where it is rumored the beast howls at the moon each sunset. Alex believes Calli has bribed her way into his home in order to get a look at the beast of Monster House, and is determined to hate her. He isn't prepared as she batters down the hard walls of his soul with her kindness and humor.
Red and the Wolf: Three years ago, Rafe Wolfe left their tiny mountain burg of Piera, leaving Ruby Hood behind to mend her shattered heart. Now, Rafe has come home to compete with his brother Lowell for Ruby's heart. But Rafe and Lowell have intimate knowledge of the wolf attacks that threaten their home. Can Ruby live with the same knowledge, or will it forever destroy her?
Snow White: Left at the mercy of her stepmother Katarina, Snow White is sent into the forest to be killed. Escaping, she stumbles upon an enchanted village created by Katarina to entrap Prince Philip after he spurned her. Philip believes Snow White is the one spoken of who can break the curse that holds Fableton. Snow's only hope of winning freedom for herself and Fableton is to defeat the evil and powerful Katarina.
The Unmasking of Cinderella: Amella Augustus has lived under her stepmother's cruel reign since her father's death. Then she runs into Char - literally. Just when Amella begins to believe she's found her happily ever after, Iona pounces in threatening to take away Amella’s dreams of happiness. Now Amella must take charge of her own destiny, and make a decision that can either give her the peace she’s longed for . . . or return her to the misery she’s lived in for so long.
The White Swan: Benno von Rothbart, a powereful sorcerer, is jealous of Odette's love for Victor. Victor and Odette are unaware of Benno's powers and manipulations to come between them and win Odette for himself. When Benno uses his powers to transform Odette into a swan, she finds herself in a fight for her freedom and for Victor in this retelling of the classic Swan Lake fairytale.
In the Beginning: (Short Story from It’s a Love Thing)
Before coming to Earth Alashon and Vindar vow to find one another. The vow is not made lightly: if they fail, they will spend their eternity’s alone.
Drake has lived a hard life. In and out of trouble with the law, sentenced to juvenile corrections and finally released to the custody of his parole officer, the strange, surfer-dude Tom, Drake is forced to move to the tiny beach town of Seaside. There, he meets Megan, Tom’s off-limits daughter. Though he tries to avoid her, it seems she turns up constantly in his life. It isn’t long before he finds himself looking forward to visits from the ultra-optimistic Megan. But does she really care for Drake, or is he just another charity case? And why does she seem so very familiar to him?
Reluctance: (Short Story)
Twenty-year-old Dahlia hates the life that she is forced to lead. But the time is quickly coming when she must make a decision that will shape the rest of her life. She's set her sights on Jace. He is someone her family will approve of, someone that will finally gain her acceptance among her people. Then Cam comes into her life, making her question what she assumed was her inevitable destiny, giving her hope that she might be able to lead the normal existence that she longs for. But fate has its own plan for Dahlia. Now she has to find courage she didn’t know she possessed to fight for her own future.
Watched: (Short Story from Screams in the Night)
Sixteen-year-old Stephanie Beasley has it all. She's a top student, head cheerleader, popular, with a great boyfriend. But she also has it.
It stands in the corner of her bedroom in the dark of night, watching, waiting. Always waiting. Until it follows her out of her room for the first time ever, bringing her terror to a new level.
Soon, Steph is losing sleep, unable to function, stressed about when it will make its move. And when it does, she'll be forced to do anything she must to protect those she loves. 
Interview: 
1) What is your all-time favorite book and why? 
Flowers from the Storm by Laura Kinsale, which is odd since it's completely outside of the genre I write and generally read (YA). It's a historical romance so it's strange that it's my all-time fave, but I love the language used in the writing and descriptions, the flawed hero, the unusual heroine, the intensely romantic love story. 
2) Is there an author you could be compared to or popular fictional characters your book's characters could relate to and why? 
I don't compare myself to anyone because I feel authors are unique with their own voice, and I don’t think it’s fair to try to say my writing is as good as someone elses. My characters are mostly teens or young adults, living in a contemporary world, so I suppose they'd relate to other characters in the same situation. 
3) Can you give us your favorite quote from one of your books and explain it? 
“You, Kate, I fell in love with you! With your strength and courage, with your naiveté and innocence, your unschooled sense of humor. With your loyalty and how willingly you gave your love and trust.” 
This quote is from Henry to Kate in Heart on a Chain when he’s trying to convince her to take him back. I like it because he’s taking about her qualities without mentioning anything about her physical self. It’s important to me for my characters to fall in love with someone not because of how they look but because of how they are. 
4) What types of things/people/music inspires you and makes you want to keep writing? 
Almost everything in the world can be an inspiration if you just open your mind. Romantic stories, lyrics, movies probably inspire me more than anything, but honestly, just the world in general. My husband and I recently returned from a trip and I have oodles of characters in my head bursting to be released simply from observing others around me. Sometimes something as simple as a thunderstorm inspires me, or the way the sun slants through a tree. 
5) Describe your typical writing day or week. 
I write best in the middle of the night. I begin writing heavily around 10 pm and write usually until around 4 or 5 am. I sleep until noon, then get up, get ready, and work on marketing. Marketing is something I can fairly easily stop in the middle of to take care of family, life, whatever. I hate stopping in the middle of writing, so that's why nighttime writing works best for me - no one to interrupt me. 
6) Is there a food or drink do you have to have when you're writing?
Water always to drink, because I don't want to have to get up if I'm thirsty. And usually I have chocolate of some kind nearby. 
7) Can you tell us what you're working on right now (& possibly provide an excerpt & cover)? 
I'm nearly finished with a book I'm writing with Jeffery Moore, a YA sci-fi, again outside my usual genre. I don't have a cover yet, nor an official blurb, but it's about a creature who wakes up on earth inside of a human teen with no memory of who she is or where she came from. It's a novel of self-discovery, and finding the person she’s meant to be with. I'm also writing a book (I'm about 1/2 way through) that's a contemporary YA romance with a hero who feels no emotion, and a heroine who has extremely unusual home circumstances (not abuse), making them both a bit broken. (I may have the one book finished before 6/21 so if I do I'll send the info at that time and change this answer) 
Excerpt: Rapunzel Untangled 
RG: If I can discover my address, then I'll tell you where to find the correct trellis. There might be more.
Fab Fane Flannigan: You genuinely don't know your address? Huh. Weird. Okay. Maybe I can find you by your last name if it's not common.
RG: I know the name of my house. Does that help? It's actually my own last name.
Fab Fane Flannigan: Your house has a name? Can't be too many of those, so maybe that will help. Especially if it's also your last name and your last name isn't Smith or Lee.
Rapunzel took a deep breath, then plunged.
RG: My last name is Gothel. I live at Gothel Manor. Do you know where it is?
The cursor flashed for so long without response Rapunzel thought he'd signed off. It showed him as still online, though. Maybe he was Googling the information. She smacked her forehead. Of course. Why hadn't she thought of that all this time? She probably could have discovered her own address in that same manner and not had to let him know that she didn't know where she lived. She moved her mouse to open a new tab for that very purpose when his message came.
Fab Fane Flannigan: Sorry. Just a bit stunned, here. Are you saying you live at GOTHEL MANSION??? The Gothel Mansion? I'm having a hard time believing that. You’ve been playing me this whole time? Is that the reason for all the secrecy? I'm just kind of feeling . . . disbelieving, I guess.
Rapunzel stared at his words. Was her home well known? Why did he call it Gothel Mansion instead of Gothel Manor? And why did he think she was kidding about living here?
RG: My mother calls it Gothel Manor, so maybe that's different?
Fab Fane Flannigan: No, Rapunzel, there's only one that I know of. It has to be the same. Are you telling me the truth here?
RG: Yes, of course.
She made a decision.
RG: Okay, time for me to stop being so "secretive" as you say. But I have good reasons for being so. I have a disease
She stopped and deleted the last four words.
RG: I can't go outside because if I do I will get very sick. I live in a specific area of the house. It's the southeast corner. I only know that because I have a compass. I don't know my address because I've never had any reason to need to know it. I suppose I could have Googled it, but honestly the thought never crossed my mind. Is it weird that I live here?
There was no response again for a few long minutes before he answered.
Fab Fane Flannigan: No, not weird, just . . . never mind. So you live in the tower?
RG: Uh, the tower? I don't know. Is it a tower?
Fab Fane Flannigan: Yes, it is. I know where it is. I'll be there Friday at 8.
Rapunzel sensed the difference in his tone. Something wasn't right.
Fab Fane Flannigan: Rapunzel, promise me one thing.
RG: Okay.
Fab Fane Flannigan: Don't Google your house.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

The Indie Inked Solstice Sale!!


Summer Solstice. It isn't just the longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere. In Celtic lore, it is also the day of the epic battle between the Oak King and the Holly King. Brothers—twins—who symbolically battle each year to gain control of the seasons. The Oak King, fair and golden, rules until Midsummer, the day of Summer Solstice. The darksome Holly King reigns until Winter Solstice, when the Oak King—and daylight—regains his power.

Celebrate the solstice with us! Enter to win two fabulous prize packs: The Oak King prize, a collection of luminous covers and enchanting stories, and The Holly King prize, a bounty of haunting covers and enthralling tales. Each paperback will be signed by the author.




Entry details are on the Rafflecopter form below.

Throughout the week, we will be highlighting these amazing books, so keep an eye out for blog posts and further details - www.indieinked.com.

If you'd like to grab a copy of these books, here are the purchase links. One purchase equals 10 POINTS in the Rafflecopter draw.

Set in Stone by Beth Balmanno
Freak of Nature by Julia Crane
Forever Fae by LP Dover
Falling to Pieces and Dazzle by Amber Garza
Impossible by Komal Kant
Their Promise byBrina Courtney
Tragic by JA Huss
Recalled by Cambria Hebert
Selling Scarlett by Ella James
Wicked Fate by Tabatha Vargo
Forged by Greed and Forged by Magic:Origins by Angela Orlowski-Peart
Descent by Cameo Renae
Ever Shade, Ever Fire and Ever Winter by Alexia Purdy
Unknown by Melissa Pearl
Flutter by Melissa Andrea
Dark Summer by Lizzy Ford

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, June 14, 2013

How Much Should A Book Cost?

YA writers and bloggers unite each week to share their thoughts on what it's like going indie in today's publishing world.

I have just released my latest novel - Unknown - so YA Indie Carnival's discussion today is quite timely. I had to ask myself this very question as I uploaded my book the other day. 

How much should this book cost? How much is it worth?

It saddens me to realize that a book's cost and worth are two very different things. When I think about all the hours I've poured into my novels and the money I've spent on editors to make sure they a quality reads, I cringe to think that I may only sell them for 99c.

But the thing is, there is no point putting in all this time and effort and publishing it online then not selling one single copy. So pricing is a very important consideration.

When it comes to pricing, I try to think like a reader. I don't mind spending up to $5 for en e-book. I'll even spend up to $8 if it's an author I really love. Now I don't know any indie authors that would price their stuff that high. Most of the authors I know price their books at either 99c or between $2.99 - $4.99, which I am always happy to pay. It's WAY cheaper than the $25+ I used to spend on paperback novels.

Personally, I would love to charge $3.99+ for all my books. They are all over 60,000 words long, they are a decent read and I feel like they are worth that much, but from a marketing stand point, I choose not to do that. I am trying to find a happy compromise. 

So - my very first book (the first of a series) is permanently free - Golden Blood. The next two books in the series are $3.99 each. Some people don't like this, but I figure I'm giving them one book for free, so they're picking up an entire trilogy for just under $8, which really isn't bad. My two stand alone novels are $3.99 each and my latest release (the first of a series) is $2.99. 

By making $2.99 my lowest price, I am able to benefit from 70% royalties on Amazon and it also gives me room to move with specials. I try to run some sort of special every couple of months on my books. I don't mind dropping the price to 99c for a short period of time. It's a great boost for my rankings. I tend to only do this with first books in a series though.

Now I don't know if I have it right. I still have much to learn about marketing, but this strategy seems to be working for now.

How about you?
What do you think books are worth?


If you'd like to find out what the other carnival goers think, you can follow the links below. 
And don't forget to check out our latest news on our YA Author Club site.

1.Laura A. H. Elliott2.Bryna Butler, author Midnight Guardian series
3.T. R. Graves, Author of The Warrior Series4.Suzy Turner, author of The Raven Saga
5.Rachel Coles, author of Into The Ruins, geek mom blog6.K. C. Blake, author of Vampires Rule and Crushed
7.Gwenn Wright, author of Filter8.Liz Long | Just another writer on the loose.
9.Ella James10.Maureen Murrish
11.YA Sci Fi Author's Ramblings12.A Little Bit of R&R
13.Melissa Pearl14.Terah Edun - YA Fantasy
15.Heather Sutherlin - YA Fantasy

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Indie Life - It's All About The Release

I'm very excited to be part of The Indelibles Indie Life series. These posts run on the second Wednesday of every month and include ideas and articles from a wide variety of indie authors. Check out the links below to learn more about INDIE LIFE.

I have talked about a variety of things over the past five months - from attitude about writing to getting the exposure we need in order to make our writing a success.

Following along that line, I want to talk about "The Release." That moment you work so hard to obtain. Weeks and months of hard work have been poured into your book, it looks fabulous, it reads well, your beta readers love it and now it's time to share it with the world.

I have always struggled with this moment in my book's life. It's nice to let it go and pass it on to the world, but I also find it really challenging. How do I get the world as excited as me and then how do I turn that excitement into actual sales?

I have read articles that say it's all about the pre-buzz. Getting people so excited about the book that when you do finally release it, they're so desperate they buy it straight away. I have done this a little, not much. I probably should have started months earlier and maybe I will with my next book. For now, let's focus on the actual day of release.

I am learning as I go and there are plenty of things you can do with the release of a book:
- Facebook release parties
- Blog Tours
- Giveaways
- Paid advertising
- Asking people to spread the word for you
- Book signings

These seem to be the most popular that I know of, but which are the most effective and what can you afford to do? You have no doubt spent money on editing and cover design, how much is left to throw at marketing?

Because my funds are tight and I want to produce quality, I tend to put most of my money towards editing and cover design, but I have quickly learned that spending money on marketing is just as important. In an attempt to use my funds wisely, I have decided, with the release of my trilogy, to save up most of my funds and spend it once the third book is released.

Unknown - Book 1 - came out yesterday. So far I have asked people to spread the word and have gathered up a few reviews. I'm also running a giveaway on my blog. All very low cost things. I will be doing the same for Unseen - Book 2 - when it comes out in July.

However in August, when Unleashed - Book 3 - comes out, I will be pulling out all the stops. I have an FB event planned for shortly after the release. I have a blog tour running in September and shortly after that I will be paying for advertising on the first book. I'm really hoping that combining the marketing funds for all three books will help me gain the trilogy some decent momentum. I will hopefully see a flow on effect from sales, because all three books will be available at once.

It will be interesting to see and I can't wait to come back in October and let you know how I got on.

So what do you do when releasing a book? How do you turn your enthusiasm into book sales?

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Unknown Release Giveaway!

Well, Unknown is ready to go. Eeepppp!!!

As with any release, it is an awesome and scary thing. I can't decide if I want to dance in circles or throw up!

But it doesn't matter how I'm feeling, that PUBLISH button has been pressed! Unknown has flown into cyber space and no longer belongs to me. I know I wrote it, but for some reason whenever I publish a book, the moment I upload it and send it on its way, I feel as though it becomes the property of the readers.

So, to celebrate the fact I have passed another book over to my dear readers, I thought I'd run a little giveaway.

The prize is very simple: one paperback copy of Unknown.

The entry is also very simple. All you need to do is answer one question in the comments section below. On Friday I will use Random.org to select one winner from the comments section. Entries close on Friday 14th, 8am EST. 

Okay - so here's my question... last week, I introduced you to some of the characters you will meet in Unknown. All you need to tell me is - which character intrigues you the most...who are you most looking forward to meeting when you read Unknown?

Here are the links to last week's blog posts:
The Three Main Characters
People in Taramon
People in Mezrah
Two Very Special Children

Good luck with the giveaway. I look forward to reading your answers!!

If you'd like to purchase a digital copy of Unknown, you can pick one up on AMAZON or SMASHWORDS.


Thursday, June 6, 2013

Unknown Character Intros - Two Very Special Children

I don't want to give too much away, but I can't not mention two very special children in this story....

Adamar and Mya.

I love these two. They are magical little humans that bring the story to life and help Kyla and Jethro through some of their most desperate times along the way.

Kyla and Jethro discover Adamar in the Canyon Lands. He is a peaceful kid with deep dimples and a ready smile. He has a way with people and can calm down any situation. He loves animals and animals love him.

Mya appears in the Forest of Gesham. In spite of her petite stature and adorable smile, her eyes sparkle with a wisdom beyond her years. She is very in tune with nature. To me, she is a little ray of sunshine and I've adored writing all my scenes with her.


So that's it with the character introductions. I've had so much fun giving you little snippets about these people and letting you into The Element world.

Next week, look out for a pre-release giveaway!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Unknown Character Intros - People in Mezrah

So far I have highlighted the three main characters and other key characters from Taramon.

Today I want to highlight some people from Mezrah - the eastern city and the home of King Ashan, a powerful force of darkness that threatens to take over the world.

Mordekai - used to be a well-respected seer until he became obsessed with the prophecy. He has a strong belief that the God of Light will return and save the world from King Ashan's reign. He has a good soul and clings to his faith with a stubborn tenacity.

Nikara - Mordekai's apprentice. In spite of the evil that dwells in Mezrah, she loves her home. She has dreams of a grander life than living with the ageing seer. She is a talented woman and secretly dabbles with magic when Mordekai is not looking.

Safeer - the ambassador of King Ashan. He is an arrogant man who loves the power of working for King Ashan. He takes great delight in visiting Taramon on a monthly basis and seeing the queen and councilmen squirm as he dishes out more orders from his mighty ruler.



King Ashan - has become more beast than man, therefore I have no image to represent him. He is fuelled by a potent elixir brewed by a powerful sorcerer in the heart of the Black Forest. He has become an ominous threat. People are terrified of him. His evil is beyond compare. Nothing pleases him more than seeing people suffer. His only weakness, a fear that the prophecy might in fact be true.

Tomorrow I'll do my final character introductions...there are two very special people I'd like you to meet.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Unknown Character Intros - People in Taramon

Yesterday I highlighted the three main characters in this story: Kyla, Jethro and Athra. They all come from the city of Taramon, so I wanted to highlight a few key people from the northern city.

Taramon is filled with good-hearted, hard working people. It has been a pillar of light for centuries, but is now suffering under the threat of a very dark reign from the eastern city, Mezrah.

Some of the key characters from this city are:

Queen Elaina - Kyla's mother and the matriarch of the city. When her husband, King Heron, was killed in battle the full responsibility of power fell on her. This was something she was very unprepared for. In an effort to keep her people safe, she made what she thought was the best decision and signed a treaty with Mezrah. Now Taramon must submit to constant demands placed on them by Mezrah's king - Ashan. In spite of her loss, she has proven to be a strong woman and is doing her best to train her reluctant daughter in the ways of governance.

Varon - The queen's right hand man and Athra's father. He has been a tower of strength for the queen since her husband passed. They have become close friends and she always turns to him for advice before making any major decisions.

Benyamin - Jethro's father. Athra's uncle. Varon's brother-in-law. He is a good man with a solid faith. Injured in King Heron's war, he walks with a marked limp, but he has not let the injury overcome him. People in the city look up to him. He is a member of the queen's council.



There are obviously many other characters from Taramon, but these three play a significant role in this trilogy. I'll let you meet a few other key characters before the release of Unseen.

Tomorrow I'll introduce you to four very important characters from the city of Mezrah.



Monday, June 3, 2013

Unknown Character Intros - The Three Main Characters

Unknown is due out in less than two weeks. Eeeppp!!!

I'm super excited about this series. It's my first try at epic fantasy so it's been a challenging project to work on, but so much fun.

Over the next week and a bit, I thought I'd do a little extra blogging and introduce you to some of the characters.

During the planning stages, I spent some time finding images of actors that looked like the characters in my head. I know everyone sees characters differently, but I've had these images on my wall the whole time I've been writing and by the end of the trilogy, I was picturing the characters as these people.

Today I want to introduce you to the three MCs - Kyla, Jethro and Athra.

Princess Kyla of Taramon is a feisty girl. She hates being a princess and despises the idea of one day having to be queen. She longs for adventure and to explore every corner of the earth. She feels trapped inside the castle, under the scrutiny of her mother. Her father, one of the only people to truly understand her, died when she was young. It was a crushing blow. She is an able fighter, brilliant with a bow and if she could have been born a boy, she would have been the happiest person alive. She is betrothed to Athra.

Jethro is Athra's cousin and used to be Kyla's best friend. When he learned of their betrothal he was heart broken. Unable to explain his true feelings to Kyla, he crept away from the friendship and things have never been the same. He has been raised to believe in the God of Light. He has a true heart, a healthy serving of courage and like Kyla, longs to explore the farthest reaches of the earth. Having been secretly trained by his father, he is a very capable fighter. His sense of humour has helped him through many tough times and his loyalty to the people he loves is unbreakable.

Athra is the future king of Taramon and absolutely loves that idea. He is passionate about the city and the people within it. He is a natural leader and longs to free the city from the oppressive darkness. He likes to do what is right, but can also be extremely stubborn. He cares deeply for people and loves Kyla, in spite of her un-lady-like antics. He has already mapped out their future together and longs for the day they will marry.

So there you have it, three main characters that I have grown to love. Each of them have a very long journey to walk throughout this trilogy and I have loved watching them grow and develop throughout their harrowing experiences. Don't worry, for those of you rolling your eyes that this is another love triangle, it really doesn't fit the typical love triangle bill - you'll have to read it to see what I mean ;-)

If you'd like to add Unknown to your reading list, here is the Goodreads link.

Tomorrow I'll introduce you to some more citizens of Taramon.