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Archive for April, 2013

I just wanted to share with you all a wonderful gothic thriller by my beta partner, Sara Kjeldsen. I might be biased here because I got to watch Sara mold this gothic beauty into perfection, but she has truly created a delightfully haunting tale. And if that cover doesn’t grab you immediately, the fantastic price of FREE will!

Followed’s book description:

Adeline assumes that her life is on track when she befriends her spirited governess, Julia, followed by her ex-midshipman cousin, Gabriel. But when her great aunt passes away after revealing a terrible secret, she is torn away from Julia by her new guardians.

After their home in Bath is set aflame, Adeline and Gabriel flee to the woods. Separated from Gabriel after being chased down by a strange horseman, Adeline is then approached by a madman and is given an ultimatum to follow him – or to die alone in the forest.

I was drawn in immediately by the cover’s promise of a creepy tale and couldn’t put the book down until the last page. Followed is the kind of book where you not only have an interesting cast of developed characters, but the actual setting is one of the most important characters. The old mansion and the primal woods truly create a fantastically eerie and haunting atmosphere. I felt like I was there in that mansion following the characters down the secret passageways, riding along on horseback beside them, and wandering through the creepy woods. I enjoyed all the twists and reveals that kept me turning every page. I can’t get enough of stories with death-bed confessions, secret rooms, scandalous diaries, and restless spirits.

If you love gothic thrillers with a pinch of mystery, you will love Followed. The ending has enough closure to be satisfying, but there are still plot threads left hanging to keep the reader eager to read on. I love books that hint at little mysteries that promise to be big reveals later down the road. I can’t wait to see where Sara goes with the next book in series (and I’m so happy that I’ll be one of the first people who can take a peak at it:))

If you wanted to try Followed out for yourself, you can find the new release here FREE (and hurry since I don’t think it will be free for long!)

 

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So I’ve joined a fun and supportive blog hop that celebrates independent authors that requires you write one post about anything self-publishing once a month. If you’re interested in reading some of today’s posts or joining up as well, click on the icon above.

I came across a fascinating blog post on Kboards from a best-selling, formally traditionally published author, Elisa Beth Naughton. If you have the time, you can read it for yourself here. Otherwise, I’ll try my best to summarize.

Naughton opened up about the struggles she had when she was traditionally published where she used any meager profit she made for her own books’ publicity and claimed a negative income on her taxes (even being on the best-selling list). She brings up the fact that she was so focused on the prestige of being traditionally published that she was unaware of the poor contract she signed for her books. Many times, authors will trade many of their rights and profits just to say that they’re traditionally published. As soon as she got some of her book titles back, she decided to follow a few of her successfully self-published friends and dove into indie waters. She admits it took some hard work to get her books noticed again, but is now claiming possibly seven figures this year on her income tax from self-publishing alone!

She admits that self-publishing isn’t for everyone (and I’m sure having her name well-known prior to self-publishing helped her immensely), but she makes a great point by saying that she is so glad she writes in an age where authors have these choices. It is so important to realize that self-publishing allows every author that choice.

If you don’t get represented by an agent, you have a choice.

If you don’t get picked up by a publisher, you have a choice.

If you don’t get offered a great contract, you have a choice.

If you don’t make much profit off your traditionally published book, you have a choice.

If you get your books backlisted, you have a choice.

Self-publishing gives us all a choice, even if you do decide to go the traditionally published route.  It’s in every author’s best interest to support indies so that they always have a potentially profitable alternative out there (and hopefully publishers will become wary of this and offer better deals to keep their authors happy).

When I was querying agents (and my dream agent actually was interested!) I probably would have accepted anything to just get published. I’m so glad that I did go it on my own for the very reasons that Naughton points out:

“I get to write the books I want to write, the way I want to write them, and I get to release them when I want…not when a publisher can fit me into their schedule. For me, self publishing is a perfect fit and no matter where I go from here, it will definitely be part of my career plan.

Of course, this all seems fabulous and it sounds like I’m making tons of money, doesn’t it? But you have to remember that I wrote for ten years without making a penny. Three plus of which as a published author. If you add up what I’ve made self publishing and divide it by ten years, trust me, it’s not much in the long run. But the growth potential is there, and that’s what keeps me going. There was a time not long ago when I was pretty sure I was going to have to go back to teaching because I wasn’t making any money writing. I was even looking at job postings online, trying to find a science position in my area. Now that’s all changed. I get to keep doing what I love. I get to keep writing the books readers love because of self publishing.”

I’m so happy that Naughton has found such rewarding success in self-publishing, especially after working so hard for all those years. I’m definitely content with my small successes at this point and thank the universe everyday that I had this option available. My series would never have been published and there are many fans that have thanked me for writing them.

Options are always a wonderful thing 🙂

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On Thursday, New York Times best selling indie author, Dave Wolverton / David Farland’s teenage son was critically injured in a longboard accident. Ben and his family were life-flighted to Las Vegas where Ben has since been in a medically induced coma. He has had multiple emergency brain surgeries to attempt to control the swelling in his brain. The problem is his family did not have insurance and they are worried about the extraordinary cost of such a traumatic injury.

You can see more of this story at http://www.gofundme.com/BensRecovery.

I don’t remember seeing David Farland on the KBoard Forum, but he’s been a successful indie author for quite a few years. I’m usually leery of donating to unknown causes, but this story touched me so much that I looked into David Farland’s books. He has many high-rated fantasy books and a couple writing instructional books.

One in particular caught my attention, Million Dollar Outlines, and I started reading it immediately.

Bestselling author David Farland has taught dozens of writers who have gone on to staggering literary success, including such #1 New York Times Bestsellers as Brandon Mull (Fablehaven), Brandon Sanderson (Wheel of Time), James Dashner (The Maze Runner) and Stephenie Meyer (Twilight).

In this book, Dave teaches how to analyze an audience and outline a novel so that it can appeal to a wide readership, giving it the potential to become a bestseller. The secrets found in his unconventional approach will help you understand why so many of his authors go on to prominence.

Or you could check out his other instructional, Drawing on the Power of Resonance in Writing. I picked this one up as well 🙂


All successful writers use resonance to enhance their stories by drawing power from stories that came before, by resonating with their readers’ experiences, and by resonating within their own works.

In this book, you’ll learn exactly what resonance is and how to use it to make your stories more powerful. You’ll see how it is used in literature and other art forms, and how one writer, J. R. R. Tolkien, mastered it in his work.
So if the story pulls at your heart-strings a bit and you need to help with your outlining or resonance, you will feel wonderful purchasing his books knowing that it will go to help this young man recover. Win, win. And if you don’t think your outlining or resonance needs any help, check out his amazing fantasy books. Here’s the link to his many books.

Please feel free to share/tweet/reblog this and have a restful Sunday!

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