Thursday, June 5, 2014

The Will to Love Now Available for Kindle

My novelette, The Will to Love, is now available for Kindle. It's a sweet romance with just a touch of paranormal, and appropriate for age 15 or 16 and older. You can find it here: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00KRQ3EG4

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Brinda Berry's New Book Is Out!


Chasing Luck

By Brinda Berry

a Serendipity novel

$2.99
New Adult Romantic Suspense
ISBN: 978-0-9916320-2-2

On Amazon /  Kobo  /  B & N   /   iBooks

Sometimes surviving doesn’t feel lucky. Especially when you’re a sole survivor... 

At the age of seven, Malerie walked away from a bombing that left hundreds dead—including her mother. When a crazed gunman kills her guardian on her eighteenth birthday, Malerie suspects there may be more to her survival than luck. A mysterious code holds the key to her future, and a reluctant white knight holds the key to her heart.   

A loner wearing emotional armor… 
Ace is a twenty-year-old entrepreneur focusing on two things in life: financial security and a life without ties. A life that doesn't risk losing the ones who matter. When Ace is hired to secretly act as a bodyguard for Malerie, he faces an unwanted attraction that threatens to sabotage his heart. Can Ace find the courage to love a girl with a death wish?

Chasing Luck Book Trailer at : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uOSg3FOC21M



Brinda Berry
Adventures with Adrenaline-Addled Attraction
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Sunday, May 11, 2014

My Mother's Mirrors


My mother's death certificate says she died of sepsis. Cardiac arrest would have been as accurate, since both were results of other conditions. You'll never see it on a death certificate, but she died of osteoporosis and Lewy body dementia.

When my mother started talking about “that family in the next room,” I knew we had a problem. The “next room” she was referring to was the mirrored closet door in her bedroom.
            My mother had Lewy body dementia. Lewy bodies are the abnormal round structures that are deposited in the brain when people have Parkinson’s disease. Although people with Lewy body dementia sometimes develop physical symptoms similar to Parkinson’s, the first symptom is usually an inability to separate reality from—what? Dreams? Misinterpretation of sensory stimuli? It’s the second most common type of progressive dementia after Alzheimer’s, yet most people have never heard of it.
            My mother had been diagnosed only a few months earlier because she called me while I was on my way home from church.
            “Where are you?”
            I could tell by the tone of her voice that something was wrong. “What’s going on?”
            “Well, I might need your help later. I just wanted to be sure you were around in case they didn’t leave.”
            “In case who didn’t leave?”
            “Oh, there’s a man and a woman. I guess she’s his wife. An older man—her father, I think. And some kids.”
            “What are they doing?”
            “Just looking around. They pick up stuff and look at it and put it back down. I asked them what they want, but they won’t talk to me.”
            I wasn’t more than fifteen minutes away, and I wasted no time getting to her condo.  When I arrived, she seemed a little frightened. Her eyes darted nervously around the room—which looked exactly as it had the last time I visited her—nobody there but her, and nothing out of place.
            “Did they leave?”
            “I don’t know where the others went, but the older man went into the bathroom. He must be sick, because it really stinks now.”
            The bathroom door was nearly closed. Half afraid of what I might find when I pushed it open, I was nevertheless emboldened by my inability to smell anything more than my mother’s favorite air freshener. Cautiously, I peeked in.
            The bathroom was empty.
            I spent the next two hours trying to convince my mother to go with me to the emergency room. Worst case, I feared she’d had a stroke; best case, I knew she’d suffered hallucinations several years ago when she had low blood sugar.
            And I did convince her. But four hours in the emergency room produced no explanation for her Sunday “visitors.” In fact, she was surprisingly healthy for her 84 years—her blood pressure and cholesterol were better than mine!
            “I must have dozed off and had a dream,” she said, by way of explanation.
            I didn’t buy it. She’d been awake when I arrived, yet she was convinced one of them was still around. And I discovered later that another of them, a boy about eight years old, stayed behind and kept her company, sometimes watching over her while she slept. She named him Peanut. She enjoyed his company, but she wasn’t as sure about the rest of the family, especially the father. She didn’t trust him.
            When my brother-in-law and his family came to visit at Christmas, they covered the mirrors with pretty stick-on paper, thinking that maybe if she couldn’t see the reflections, she’d realize they were simply closet doors instead of a portal into another world where people that only she could see lived. And for a while, it seemed to work. But the hallucinations started being triggered by the bathroom mirrors, and they became more frightening. Because she seemed to fare fairly well during the day, I started spending the night with her, but soon realized she needed someone with her who was awake and alert 24 hours a day. The complex she lived in included a section for assisted living, so she moved from her condo into an apartment.
            There, too, she was convinced she was seeing people in another room through her mirrors, but they didn’t come into her quarters as often as they had. For a time, she would buzz for help or walk down to the dining room and help the staff fold napkins if she became frightened at night. Then one afternoon she called me to come get her because she wanted “to go home.” I found her outside the building, waiting for me at the curb. Usually that wasn’t a problem. Residents came and went as they pleased, and she had often met me outside when we were going out to eat, which we did at least a couple of times a week. But this time she was outside because my father, who had died three years ago, was working in the attic, and he and his crew were making so much noise it was giving her a headache. She wanted to go home, meaning my childhood home, which they had left about the time I started college. If she had started out to try to find it before I’d arrived, she could easily have wound up on a busy highway. We had to move her into the memory unit.
            The memory unit had fewer mirrors. Although she had fewer visits from the family—even Peanut was absent—she started having visits from relatives: my niece of 15 years earlier, a cousin of 30 years earlier. They always needed her help—help she was unable to give. Then one night she was convinced she was a visitor in someone’s home, and while the attendant stepped out to let her change into her pajamas, she decided to shower in order to free up the bathroom—her private bathroom—for those who needed to shower in the morning. Unattended, she flooded the bathroom floor, then slipped and fell when she stepped out. Her spine, like chalk from osteoporosis, crumbled, leaving her nearly paralyzed below the waist.
            Her room in the nursing home had no mirrors, and she had no invisible visitors during the week she was there. The day she died, she was more alert and lucid than she had been for months. Then she just drifted away, staring into space. At almost exactly midnight, a week after her 86th birthday, she took a deep breath, closed her eyes, and just—stopped.
            Going through her things, which had accumulated in my garage as she moved to progressively smaller quarters, I found a small looking glass set in a carved wooden frame. It now lies on the vanity in my bathroom.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Celebrate DaniLyn's New Book! NOW OUT


DaniLyn Alexander is giving away three Amazon gift cards to celebrate the publication of her new novel, Anonymous. Read about DaniLyn in my previous post, and enter to help her celebrate here:

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Anonymous by Dani-Lyn Alexander Available Now for Pre-Order


DaniLyn Alexander 's book romantic suspense novel Anonymous is scheduled for publication by HarperImpulse on April 17, and it's available for pre-order from Amazon NOW. Don't wait! 

Protagonist Ali's heart has been broken, and she decides to try Anonymous, a new dating website where you can retain complete anonymity while you search for your soul mate. When she discovers Joe, she thinks she may have at least found a new friend and decides to put her past behind her and move on.

Several death threats and an attempt on her life force her back into contact with her soon-to-be ex, Mark, who is the lead detective on the case. The tension builds between them while Ali struggles to get over Mark, and Mark races to find the maniac who's trying to kill her.

When Ali meets up with her online flame, she finds he's anything but the friend she imagined…


Dani-Lyn Alexander lives on Long Island with her husband, three kids and three dogs. She loves spending time with her family, at the beach, the play-ground, or just about anywhere. In her spare time, which is rare, she enjoys reading and shopping—especially in book stores. Some of her favorite things include; Bernese Mountain Dogs, musicals, bubble baths and soft blankets. She’s an incurable insomniac and has an addiction to chocolate.

You can find out more about Dani-Lyn on her website at http://www.danilynalexander.com or contact her on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/danilynalexander or Twitter at https://twitter.com/DaniLynAlexande



Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Kathryn Elizabeth Jones Talks About Why Marketing Your Book Takes Guts


I can be found on Kathryn Jones's blog this week answering questions about how, where, and when I write. And here she is on my blog giving some very good advice about marketing. So read this, and read my answers to her questions by clicking on the link above, and then go to work.

Why Marketing Your Book Takes Guts
By
Kathryn Elizabeth Jones

I was reading an article today on how marketing is really one tough venture. And I had to agree.
                  
Like climbing a mountain or tree.
                  
Only later did I realize that I really didn't have to spend money hiring some guru, who would probably do an excellent job, but nevertheless would cost me the money I was saving for my next trip to the grocery store. I really didn't have to get stressed about marketing. I could focus on one thing at a time, and only add new things to my proverbial marketing list as I had time and guts. And I really didn't need to stress about doing everything "just right."
                  
Really.
                  
The cool thing about marketing is that what doesn't work for you can shelved and replaced. The sad thing is, some writers, still feeling a bit queasy, won't tap into that something that just might be the ticker for them.
                  
You see, all writers are different. Not one of us writes like Tom Clancy; even those who purport to be "like" Tom Clancy. And that's what makes marketing so great.
                  
You do what works for you.
                 
For me, it's the reviews that come at the top of the list. And no, they're not hard to get. It just takes some brain power to sort through them and come to terms with who would be a hit and who you just might want to pass up.
                  
Next, it's about interviews. I'm not talking about television or radio interviews, although some authors swear by both, I'm speaking of blog interviews where the blog owner sends you a little form to fill out. I'm talking about being able to write the perfect for you answers and then seeing your name, photo, interview and book cover up in lights on the site. How much guts does this take? Not a whole lot, and you will be amazed at the readers who will learn about you and your new book who want to check it out.
                  
Third, it's about having your own blog so that you can interview other authors (and increase your readership further). It's about writing on that blog 3-5 days a week. It's about sticking to the blog's theme you have chosen so that readers and writers will always know what to expect. It's about sharing your new book there, but giving ample space for sharing your thoughts that have to do with writing, marketing or even your characters thoughts and beliefs (some authors have a blog for each of their characters; meaning, these individual characters speak on the blog as if they are real people).

Book marketing takes guts because it's about speaking up about your book, whether this speaking up is on the phone, online or at the next writer's conference. It's about thinking through your marketing plan in such a way that you're not overwhelmed by it and never start. It's about trying something new and seeing if it works for you, and if not, having the courage to toss it out.

But most of all, it's about reaching out and connecting with others. Want a following? Then get on Facebook, post on Twitter, and do all you can to share and connect with what others are doing.

Remember the story of The Wizard of Oz?

Remember how the straw man didn't think he had a brain? He traveled all the way to the Emerald City before he discovered he'd always had one.

Do you ever feel like that?

Like if you were only smarter in the marketing field, you could really talk about your book?

If so, stop it.

I mean it.

Right now.

And go to work.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

An Interview with Author Katriena Knights


And now, for a change of pace, I’m trying something I’ve seldom done on my blog before—I’m interviewing an author about her “new” book. I put quotes around the word “new” because although this book was initially published many years ago, this isn’t just a reissue of the same material. Katriena Knights used this opportunity to look at one of her first published books through the eyes of the experienced author of many books she has since become.

And since Katriena Knights is my daughter, I already know the answers to most of the questions asked of authors, and I know she’s answered them many times with other interviewers. I know she started writing before she could actually write by dictating poetry to me—things like “Ode to a Pancake,” and “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.” I know she wrote “books” about talking horses when she was in the fourth grade, and her teacher read them aloud to the class. And I know that if I got any of the above wrong, she won’t hesitate to tell me so.  : - )

So I thought I’d just ask about her latest published paperback—which was also one of her first—and how that process went.

KK: My latest paperback is Dealing With David, which arrived in March from Samhain Publishing. It’s a reprint—it originally appeared from Hard Shell World Factory in around 2000.

1.  It’s not often authors get to go back and take another look at previous books. How did this come about?

Dealing With David had been available at Hard Shell Word Factory for quite some time. It actually sold fairly well in the early days—it made the bestseller list at Peanut Reader back in the day. But the market has changed enough that I thought it was time to try something different with the book and give it another chance to find its market. So I submitted it to Samhain. I’ve published a few books with Samhain and like working with my editor there, so I thought it might be a good fit.

2. What kinds of things did this editor want to change and in what way did she want to change them?

My editor, Linda Ingmanson, felt that Tony, the heroine, was a bit too abrasive, and that David wasn’t alpha enough. There were also some areas where she didn’t feel the motivation or the conflict was explained quite well enough for a reader to fully sympathize with the choices that were made.

3. How did you feel about making those changes?

I focused a bit more on the motivation than the other elements, because I felt that if the motivation would clarify the characterizations. This worked to some extent, but I did do some work with the characterizations when that didn’t seem like quite enough. However, we had some disagreement about David and the “alpha male” issue. I don’t like alpha males. I find them annoying. So I went about that a bit differently. I gave David clearer motivation, and a slightly stronger personality, which I thought walked a good middle line between what I wanted to do with the character and what my editor thought might fit the market. I was pretty happy with the results, and I’m grateful to have an editor who’s flexible about this kind of work. I’ve worked with editors who aren’t, and it’s not fun.

4. Did your rework change your basic feelings about the book? How and why?

I think it’s a better book. I also think it’s a bit more in line with how I feel about relationships and balance and reflects my growth since I wrote the book.

5. Would you do this again with another book if given the opportunity? Which one(s)? What would you change/expand/cut?

I would. I’ve already done some work on some other backlist books that I revised before I re-released them independently. On some of them, I reduced the erotic content fairly significantly since I had added that for a specific publisher. I also did a bit of additional work with characterization and plot work where I felt it needed some tweaking. I haven’t done major revisions on these stories, though. In at least one case where I’ve had an opportunity to re-release a book, I passed on doing intensive revisions because I found it was difficult for me to engage with the book—not because I thought the revision suggestions were bad, but because digging deeply into that particular story brought me to an emotional place I found hard to deal with. That’s based on what’s happened in my life since the story was written, and that was a difficult decision to make.

6. What are you working on now?

I’m working on a few things right now. I have a paranormal romantic suspense I’m doing edits on as well as a non-paranormal romantic suspense that’s in first draft. I’m also working on a sequel to Necromancing Nim, which came out last October from Samhain. And there’s a sequel to Where There’s a Will in the works, as well. On top of that, I’ve been writing quite a few short stories. I tend to work on a lot of things at once in a mostly useless attempt to keep myself out of trouble.

7. What are your writing plans for the future?

I intend to keep writing what I enjoy and try to find people who also enjoy it. I have a whole door covered with Post-It notes with story ideas on them, and ideally I’d like to write all of them. Plus others.