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.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

How to Get Out of Bed


I know what you’re thinking.

But if you ever come down (heaven forbid) with a full-blown case of sciatica like I’ve had for the last several weeks, you’ll realize how difficult getting out of bed can be.

Lying in bed is fine. In fact, it’s the only place you can be comfortable, since sciatica makes both standing and sitting painful. The problem comes when you just really have to get up—usually to use the bathroom, though eating breakfast before lunchtime is also a consideration.

So there you are with a full bladder and empty stomach, lying flat on your back on a memory foam mattress that has formed to the shape of your body, holding you like a warm hug—and creating a valley you must somehow climb out of. Here goes:

1.     Slowly, without using your right hip or leg, roll out of the body-shaped indentation in your bed and over onto your stomach. The might require several attempts. Tighten every muscle in your body, because when you finally make it, you’ll be lying on your full bladder.  No! Not your glutes!

2.     Massage the spasms out of your hip.

3.     Carefully slide your left leg off the edge of the bed, groping with your foot for your clogs.

4.     Slip your left foot into the left clog.

5.     Slide the right half of your body toward the edge of the bed. Do NOT use the muscles on the right side of your body.

6.     Grit your teeth and pull your right leg off the bed, because now you have to use those spasmed glutes to lower your right foot to the floor and slip it into your right clog.

7.     Use your nightstand to push yourself to a standing position.  Take your cane, stored nearby over night, and hobble to the bathroom, praying you make it in time.

8.     Say a prayer of thanks that Hubby is an early riser, because you know how ridiculous you must look, and anyone who laughed would have to die. 

      With any kind of luck, you can get to breakfast before ten. 

      Now, How to Climb the Stairs…. 

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Writing the Dream, Living the Dream



Anyone who’s read about my novel, “When the Moon Is Gibbous and Waxing,” knows how important dreams are to my writing. The entire first scene is a nightmare I had many years ago. It made me think about stereotyping, passing judgment, love, forgiveness, and the nature of evil. Eventually the main character walked into my head, introduced herself, and demanded I write her story.

Now I’m working on a sweet romance that came to me in another dream. I know the dream was the result of something my mother said to me about a week before she died and is based on an event in her life. But then it took off in a new and strange direction. I parked it in the back of my head. Then a couple of weeks ago, I dreamed the title and couldn’t put it off any longer. It’s about half done, I think.

I keep a notebook of plot ideas. Sometimes an idea can come from a casual comment. Repeating the  quote usually attributed to Mark Twain, “Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it,” and running across a verse in the Bible about where to find God led to a trilogy of novelettes I’m now writing. (Book one finished, book two started.) So although I also get ideas from things I read in newspapers and books, most of them come from dreams.  Dreams are a vital part of my writing process.

I also find it interesting that allowing my dream room to grow into a published novel led to the fulfillment of another long-standing dream. I was at a mystery writers and readers conference in Chicago last month. My novel had just become available in paperback, and I’d furnished copies to the bookstore. I stopped by to check on sales, and a total stranger walked up and asked me to autograph a copy she’d just bought.

Dreams don't get much better than that. 

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Author Offers Free Book to Publicize Donate Life Week


D L Richardson's book Feedback is published by Etopia Press, the company that published my novel, When the Moon Is Gibbous and Waxing. This exciting YA science fiction is about three teens whose life-saving transplants plunge them into a frightening adventure. Check out how to win a free copy to help promote Australian Donate Life Week. And if you aren't a lucky winner, you're still lucky, because you've learned about how donating an organ can save a life and you've learned about this great book.

YOUR CHANCE TO BE PART OF THIS GIVEAWAY OF THIS EXCITING YA NOVEL


Synopsis:
Ethan, Florida and Jake are three teenagers awaiting organ donations to save their lives. When they recieve the organs of a dead spy, they are abducted for information that only the spy possesses. Under threat of torture, the dead spy's memories begin to awaken with the teenagers. Escaping with their lives is only the beginning. They also have to complete the spy's mission or millions of people will die.


Author's note:
While researching for Feedback, I learned about the life of the people and families waiting for organ donations. If anyone needs an inkling of what hope is, read about a person waiting for a second chance at life. Their stories really made me see how insignificant some of my little gripes are. There's nothing 'fun' about needing an organ transplant, however if I can raise awareness of organ donation through creative writing then I'll gladly do it. Why wouldn't I, when, as a writer of young adult, I write hopeful endings.


CLICK HERE FOR THE LINK TO THE GIVEAWAY


So why am I hosting this giveaway? It's organ donation awareness week in Australia. Running from Sunday 24 February to Sunday 3 March, I'm going to run a giveaway of my latest novel "Feedback" for a full month.

About Donate Life Week:

Donate Life Week is a week where the public can discover facts about organ donation, decide on organ donation, and discuss their wishes with their family members. The discussion part is perhaps the most overlooked part. It wasn't until I began researching for my latest novel Feedback did I realise that whatever a person's wishes are, their family needs to know so they can make an informed decision when it really matters.

Now, before you do anything! just remember that organ donation is a personal choice. I totally respect people's personal beliefs. If a person has a religious, cultural, personal, moral, or ethical opposition to organ donation, that's fine. This post may not be for you, but I won't object if you still wish to enter the giveaway. If you don't have any objections or opinions either way on organ donation, then it won't hurt you to have a peek at the facts.

You can check out organ donor details at the Donate Life website


Myths about organ donation:
Most religions support organ and tissue donation as generous acts that benefit people. This includes Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism and Judaism. If you are not sure whether your religion is supportive, speak to your religious adviser.

You're never too old to be a donor. Anyone can donate organs and tissue. People in their eighties have saved the lives of much younger people. Transplant professionals decide which organs and tissues can be used at the time of death after looking at your past medical history, the condition of your organs and their suitability.

You're never too young to be a donor. Anyone can be a donor - young and old. If you are under 16 years you can't register to be a donor, but you can discuss your wishes with your parents.

Medical staff do everything possible to save lives. Their first duty is to you and saving your life. Organ and tissue donation will only be considered after all efforts fail and you have been legally declared dead. Usually, the Australian Organ Donor Register is only checked after you have died.

There is never any charge for donating organs and tissues. Depending on the hospital, your family might be charged for the cost of all final efforts to save your life and those costs are sometimes misinterpreted as costs related to organ donation. Your family will be responsible for your funeral expenses.

Organ donation is about helping save or improve other people's lives. Donated tissues and organs will never be used for medical research unless explicit written permission is given by your family. If any organ or tissue that has been donated is unable to be transplanted and your family are not comfortable donating to a research program, they can choose to have the organ or tissue returned to their loved one's body or respectfully disposed.

Good luck to everyone who enters!
D L Richardson

www.dlrichardson.com

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Author Publicizes Australian Donate Life Week With Book Giveaway

DL Richardson's book, "Feedback," is published by Etopia Press, which also published my novel. "Feedback" is a YA about three young people whose life-saving transplants cause them to be swept into a frightening adventure. She's giving away copies of Feedback to publicize Donate Life Week in Australia. Enter your name in the drawing here: http://dlrichardsonauthor.blogspot.com.au/ Better yet, make sure your name is on your local donor list and buy her book. : - )