Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Black Orchid Novella Award - K.G. McAbee

Hey guys,

I just wanted to share some exciting news with you regarding a fellow Indie Fall Fest author, K.G. McAbee

K.G. McAbee won the Black Orchid Novella Award, sponsored by The Wolfe Pack and Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine, for her cotton-mill village mystery set in the 1920's, Dyed to Death. She attended the Black Orchid Banquet in NYC on Dec 6th to receive her award from Linda Landrigan, editor of AHMM. Dyed to Death will be published early next year in AHMM.

CONGRATULATIONS K.G.!!


Tuesday, December 16, 2014

My 2015 Publishing Schedule (Estimated)

In 2014 I published 5 books. Here is what it looked like:

2014-in-review

May
My Forever (Infinite Love Series, Book Two)

June
Beautifully Broken (Infinite Love Series, Book Three)
 
Aug
Pieces of Me (The Foundation Series, Book One)
 
Oct
The Fighter (The Foundation Series, Book Two)
 
Nov
Into the Darkness (Darkness Falls Series, Book One)

In 2015, I plan to publish 7 books. That may seem aggressive, but I think I can do it if I stay on track. Here's what it will potentially look like:

2015-in-review

Jan
Against All Odds (Infinite Love Series, Book Four)
Untitled (Infinite Love Series, Book One)
 
Feb
Love Notes (Four Contemporary Romance Musical Novels)

Mar
Emerging from Darkness (Darkness Falls Series, Book Two)

May
Untitled (The Foundation Series, Book Three)

July
Untitled (Standalone Novel)

Sept
???

Nov
???

I think I am going to try to return to Reality Squared sometime in 2015. It's a lot of work, but I think by the end of the year, I will be ready to tackle it. I'm excited for what 2015 will bring. Bring it on!

Celebrating the Small Successes

I started my publishing journey about 6 months ago. I guess I was disillusioned that success would come much quicker than it has. 6 months really isn't a long time and I guess I had unrealistic expectations. I am my biggest critic. Everyday I wonder what I could do better. The thing is, I don't celebrate my successes often, so I want to take a moment to do so. A lot of things have happened since I've began publishing that have made me smile. 
  • I have published 5 books in 6 months. 
  • I am approached by readers who love the books I write on a consistent basis.
  • I have been told on more than one occasion that I am someone's favorite author.
  • I compiled my most passionate readers and created a Street Team which currently has 15 members. It's still in it's infancy, but that is 15 readers who believe in me and my journey. 
  • Found an awesome PA. Apart from being a great friend and blogger, she is someone I trust, so it's been a great experience so far. 
  • All of my novels out currently have 20 reviews or more. 
  • Pieces of Me is nearing 50 reviews, 23 of those, 5-star. 
  • I've sold just about 500 e-books. Between all of my 5 books, it's really not a lot...but it is better than nothing. 
  • I met the most amazing cover designer who is also an author and has become an amazing friend. 
  • I have met incredible indie authors, PA's, and bloggers. 
  • My reach is growing. People are taking note of me and paying more attention than ever before.
  • My blog is finally being viewed after years of no one seeing it. Now on average, it is visited at least 25x a day. Which is a huge increase from nothing. 
  • More people offer to beta read/review for me than ever before. 
  • I joined 3 other authors in a box set of musical contemporary romance novels. 
  • I have over 1800 likes on my Facebook author page. Getting close to the 2000 mark!
  • My family is finally beginning to come around and take interest in my writing. 
Although some days I wish I had more instant success, I know how hard I have worked for everything on this list and I do appreciate the small successes.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

The 12 Indies of Christmas: Blog Hop & Giveaway


The Year I Realized Santa Was Mom
Christmas amongst my siblings throughout my childhood was definitely a favorite Holiday for all of us. I remember always being so anxious the night before it would make it difficult to sleep. My younger brother would always wake up around 5am, whereas my older one could sleep until 10am some years. Normally, we would all meet in the middle somewhere to open presents. 

One year, I was having trouble sleeping as usual and I remember hearing some whispering in the hallway. A few moments later I heard some commotion on the stairs. I could hear my mother and my older brother whispering. I remember sneaking a peek out of my door and seeing my mother sprawled out at the bottom of the stairwell and my brother hovering over her. Apparently as she had been sneaking downstairs to plant the presents from "Santa" she had taken a nasty spill. 

Of course i had heard the rumors that Santa wasn't real, but this was the first year that I made a promise to myself that I would find out once and for all. A few years before, my mother had hired someone to wear a Santa suit and come late at night just in case we woke up. So I had been convinced that these rumors were just that...rumors. Unfortunately, I was let down. After hearing my mother's spill at the bottom of the stairwell it helped me realize that even though Santa wasn't real, my parents were willing to go to whatever lengths necessary to keep the magic alive. In a way, I feel like this made the transition a smooth one.

How did you find out that Santa wasn't real?
a Rafflecopter giveaway

December 12th - Zane Sachs
December 13th - Kira Adams
December 14th - Chess Desalls
December 15th - Kai Strand
December 16th - Zoe Dawson
December 17th - A.G. Porter
December 18th - Joy Penny
December 19th - Mary Waibel
December 20th - Cynthia Witherspoon
December 21st - K.K. Allen
December 22nd - Ann Everett
December 23rd - Erin Rhew & Deek Rhew

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Best of 2014 Giveaway Hop


Welcome to my stop on the Best of 2014 Giveaway Hop!

I'm giving away an ebook of choice from my list to two different winners up to $2.99!
This giveaway is open internationally! Good luck!



Good luck!

Keep hopping!

Sunday, November 23, 2014

It's a Wrap...Where to Now?

Indie Fall Fest was a complete success and our last posts went live a couple of days ago. Thank you to all the authors who participated and donated books, swag, gift cards, etc. Hopefully you guys got a chance to discover a few new authors throughout our event. Thank you Kristen for asking me to be a part of it! It was a ton of work, but I am happy we could partner on something with such an awesome message. 

You still have a little less than a week to enter the HUGE giveaway which has over 140 books up for grabs and $70 in gift cards.  Enter here.

So much has happened since the beginning of Indie Fall Fest, and I've been dying to update you all on everything. 
First of all, I published my fifth book about a week ago, my NA zombie novel, Into the Darkness! It has exceeded all my expectations and already has 20 reviews, 12 of which are 5-stars! People are connecting with the characters, loving the action, and dying to know what happens next. I've already began outlining the second book in the series, Emerging from Darkness...and I can tell you it is going to be shocking. A lot happened in the first book? It's going to be a shit storm the second book. My poor characters!
I have a newsletter now! You can sign up to stay up-to-date on my new releases, promotions, sales, etc. I promise I won't spam. Sign up here

I also now have a PA and a street team. I am so excited. So many possibilities are right at the tips of my fingertips. It's so crazy to think these people believe in me and my stories and want to be a part of the journey! It's exciting. 
I am running a Thunderclap for a Black Friday sale of The Fighter. It is going to be .99 cents for Black Friday weekend. Want to support my TC? There's a few more days. Go here
There is a blitz happening for Beautifully Broken beginning tomorrow through the 26th. Over 25 blogs are participating. My PA set it up and I am really excited about it! Beautifully Broken has always been a little overlooked. There will also be about 10 bloggers reviewing the story in the next couple of months...so I am definitely looking forward to that. 
Here are the blogs who will be participating:
I have a couple of things I am working on behind the scenes that I am really excited about and can't wait to share with you all when the time is right! Things are slowly falling into place and it's really exciting. 

I am currently working on Against All Odds for #Nanowrimo. I just recently hit 35k words. I am shooting for 50k, but knowing me, it may come in just under. Beautifully Broken is only around 44k. Austyn & Avery's story has been a difficult one to tell, but ultimately beautiful. As I near the finish line, I become more anxious because this has been a highly anticipated novel. A lot of people are counting on me to tell their story and do it justice. I hope I have done just that. 

I also made the decision, thanks to my amazing PA, that I am going to be writing a Infinite Love novella that will begin the series. I haven't outlined anything yet, but it is going to be around 20-30k words. I am planning on offering it for free when I do. I can't believe I am so close to finishing the entire series. It really feels like I've been working on this for years because of how long I've been messing around with My Forever

I think 2015 is going to be my year. I really do. Apart from writing, I've been spending quite a bit of time making music with my partner in crime, Jesse. Together we make up a musical duo called DarienMae. He creates the beats and then we write the lyrics together. I can already see our potential and it's so inspiring. My New Years resolution is going to be to make big strides in both my writing and my music. And this time, I actually think I will be able to make it happen.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Indie Fall Fest: Tasha Cotter Cover Reveal


Kristen and I are so excited to share the cover reveal for Tasha Cotter's Red Carpet Day Job today for Indie Fall Fest! Don't forget to drop by the kick-off post and enter the huge giveaway!


Most of the working-class secretaries in New York City don’t spend their mornings wrestling skirts from beneath roosting chickens or cleaning egg yolk off their heels. But Sophie Waldrop does, thanks to her boyfriend, Scott, and the organic egg business he runs out of her 5th floor walk-up. Though they’ve been dating since high school, Scott no longer pulls his weight in the relationship—financially or emotionally. Sophie’s ready to send him, and his chickens, packing.

The day she breaks up with Scott, Sophie’s boss introduces her to the firm’s new client, Nick Jackson—the hottest up-and-coming actor in Hollywood. Sophie can’t believe her luck when her boss volunteers her to be Nick’s date for a red carpet award ceremony that same night. Freshly single, Sophie tries to keep things in perspective as her “work event” leads to a budding romance. She didn’t expect to like Nick, and she certainly didn’t expect him to like her.

When her dream job lands in her lap, Sophie rejoices that her hard work has finally paid off. But she soon learns that it may have been Nick's influence that opened the doors and created the opportunities that she would rather have earned for herself.

Nick’s hectic schedule, the persistent leading ladies with whom he works, and Sophie’s own promotion and career ambitions further complicate their fairy-tale romance. Can Nick and Sophie make their love last, or will their relationship be more like the paparazzi’s camera flashes—fast, bright, and fading?

Tasha Cotter is the author of That Bird Your Heart (Finishing Line Press) and Some Churches (Gold Wake Press). A graduate of the University of Kentucky and the Bluegrass Writers Studio, her work has appeared in or is forthcoming in NANO Fiction, Verse Daily, The Rumpus, and elsewhere. You can find her online at www.tashacotter.com or on twitter @TashCotter.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Indie Fall Fest: Heather Topham Wood Guest Post, Dream Cast, & Creative Writing Prompt

Today I am featuring Heather Topham Wood with a guest post, dream cast, and creative writing prompt, it's sure to be a fun time! Stick around for all of it!

Don't forget to drop by the kick-off post and enter the HUGE giveaway!

Over on Pretty Little Pages, James D. Horton is being featured today! So don't forget to stop by!

Tips on Writing Sequels

Over the span of my three-year career as a novelist, I’ve written multiple sequels. I tend to go through phases where I’m all about the standalone books and other phases where I plot out a series arc. I found myself falling into certain traps when writing my sequels and I thought I would share some of my most common mistakes.

Don’t Bore Your Readers
Avoid the information dump in the beginning of the novel. Of course, you want your book to be checked out by as many people as possible—regardless if they read your first book. However, summarizing the action of an entire novel in the first few chapters is a common mistake when writing a sequel. Instead, work in tidbits about the first novel throughout the sequel.

Leave Things Open
I’m a big fan of the finite when it comes to my reading preferences. Although I enjoy series, I like each book to have a clear cut beginning and ending. The main conflict for the first book should be resolved enough to satisfy the reader. However, you can leave a sense of openness at the end of the novel where a new conflict is likely to arise in the lives of your characters.

Don’t Write a Sequel Just to Write One
Think about the movies. How many unnecessary sequels are made because of the success of the first movie? A few examples: Teen Wolf Too, Dirty Dancing 2, Sex and the City 2, Hangover 2, and almost every Disney movie ever made. Only write a sequel if it makes sense to the story arc.

Stay Organized
You’ll be surprised at how many things you forget between now and when you wrote your first novel. Read your first book again and go over your notes. You want to make sure things are consistent including the setting, character descriptions and character development. Last thing you want is a blonde character to somehow end up as a redhead in the second book.



Dream Cast for Falling for Autumn

I went back and forth on many of these, but I think I narrowed my choices down. Falling for Autumn features college football player Blake Preston and the sweet and vulnerable freshman Autumn Dorey. My choices are based on who I felt would be best at portraying athletic (but sensitive) Blake and the actresses that could pull off Autumn’s girl next door vibe.  

Blake Preston-My top two would be Zac Efron and Chris Hemsworth

Autumn Dorey-Elizabeth Olsen and Shailene Woodley

Lexi (Autumn’s best friend)-Mary Elizabeth Winstead

Casey (Autumn’s friend)-Kaley Cuoco

Darrien (Blake’s roommate)-Michael B. Jordan

Delia (Blake’s sister)-Ashley Benson


Imagine your life is now a book. In 100 words write the blurb for it.  
Heather Wood thought she had it all: a loving husband, two beautiful children and a budding career as a freelance article writer. But her grandmother’s unexpected death shook her to the core. She returned home and was reminded of the past. A past where she dreamed of being an author and sharing her musings with the masses. Heather didn’t realize she was about to embark on a journey that would bring her heartache and triumphs, but in the end make her realize she could thrive in any role—including the roles of wife, mother and author.



Heather Topham Wood’s obsession with novels began in childhood while growing up in a shore town in New Jersey. Writing since her teens, she recently returned to penning novels after a successful career as a freelance writer. She’s the author of the paranormal romance Second Sight series and the standalone novels Falling for Autumn and The Disappearing Girl.



Heather graduated from the College of New Jersey in 2005 and holds a bachelor's degree in English. Her freelance work has appeared in publications such as USA Today, Livestrong.com, Outlook by the Bay and Step in Style magazine. She resides in Trenton, New Jersey with her husband and two sons. Besides writing, Heather is a pop culture fanatic and has an obsession with supernatural novels and TV shows.
Connect with Heather: