2015 is Two Weeks Old

How’s 2015 been treating you? I’ve been stuck in the study writing (a bit), promoting my new releases (a lot) and planning future projects (so much fun).

Today I’m sorting out a final few things and hope to clear them up over the weekend so that I hit the ground running on Monday. Djinn Justice, the sequel to Demon Hunter, is taunting me. I want to start writing it, but know that it needs a clear brain and utter focus to get it right. It’s a complicated story and I have a suspicion it will end up a novel rather than novella.

golden retriever,Toby also reminded me (mental telepathy) that I haven’t shared a photo of him lately. So I snapped one yesterday evening as we sat outside, catching a cool breeze after a run of hot days. He turned ten in November, so he’s now receiving the careful treatment due an old dog. Now, if someone could just remind him he’s old!

I’m redesigning my newsletter, today — hence the procrastination with this post. MailChimp generally defeats me. *sigh* However, it will be nice to have a template set up and an efficient way to alert readers to my new releases. The sign up button is on the left of this post — or if you’re reading on a smartphone, click the top right button near my name to change to the menu, and you’ll find the newsletter sign up about halfway down.

How do you like the teaser for Kiss It, Better which releases 22 January and is FREE for the first three days?

Valentine's Day romance, short story, Kindle Unlimited,

 

I’ve noticed (in my obsession with learning how to promote books on Facebook) that teasers are the new big thing.

Have you discovered anything interesting in 2015? Made any resolutions to do things differently? Ventured outside your study? ;) I’ve heard summer’s happening, but that’s pretty much hearsay.

Thank you all heaps for your support as I crash into self-publishing, bumbling along and relying on everyone’s kindness. Fortunately, that kindness seems infinite!

Cover Reveal – Ice-Breaker out in March

contemporary romance, australian romance, romance short stories, Australian short stories,

 

Quick cover reveal!

“Ice-Breaker” is out 8 March from Escape Publishing

Blurb:

It was a case of the right person at the absolute worst time – so he found a way to make time.

Kiara and Selwyn’s first encounter is dramatic, and their attraction instantaneous. But Kiara has commitments, dreams, and plans – and Selwyn doesn’t fit into any of it.

But he’s not willing to give up on the chance at love, so he plans a second encounter just as dramatic. When Kiara returns from scientific research in Antarctica, he kidnaps her – with her startled agreement.

Maybe all they need for a chance at real love is a break from real life.

Excerpt

Free Today! The Icarus Plot

steampunk, steampunk novella, kindle unlimited, steampunk kindle unlimited,

Happy day! THE ICARUS PLOT is free today (and by “today” I mean Amazon’s American timezone for Jan 3) — that means you have 24 hours to snap up my new release and tell your friends to do the same. It already has a five star rating (from a stranger! unsolicited review) and it’s fun!

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00RM8FHUQ

Ivana March runs a very special toy shop in the heart of Victorian London. The last person she expects to see enter it is an earl. Not that she has time to entertain him. Someone is stealing children, and the street kids whisper tales of a “Metal Man”. Ivana must find the monster, rescue the children, and if the earl really wants to help, he can come with her. Only, no one warned her she’d have to venture to places better left unexplored. A good thing, then, that the new Earl of Somer is a noted explorer. When the two of them join forces, what could possibly go wrong?

A short Steampunk novella

 

Release Dates 2015

steampunk, paranormal romance, contemporary romance, kindle unlimited,

The first third of 2015 is incredibly busy, and while these stories are releasing, I’ll be writing like mad. The secret project that I’m planning to launch in April *writing gods willing* is so romantic. Happiness.

2 January – Light Kisses, Contemporary Romance short story
3 January – The Icarus Plot, Steampunk novella
24 January – Kiss Me, Quick, Valentine’s Day short story, Contemporary Romance

8 February – Second Chance Island, Contemporary Romance short story
22 February – Ran From Him, Contemporary Romance novel

8 March – Ice-Breaker, Contemporary Romance short story
21 March – Djinn Justice, Collegium 2, Paranormal Romance

8 April - No Rescue, Contemporary Romance, short story
19 April – Secret Project…

 

2014 Wrap Up

2014 has been a year of change for me. I’ll get to the writing stuff — the substance of this post — in a tick, but first I have to acknowledge the huge impact of moving house and all the stuff that went on around it. From finding the house (four months of haunting real estate sites) to moving, to finding renovations were required (far more work than guessed). This was a year when a lot of my energy vanished into a black hole labelled “house”.

Planted a tibouchina. Toby saw the camera and decided he was needed!
Planted a tibouchina. Toby saw the camera and decided he was needed!

But I still managed to get some writing done — and a lot of thinking about writing.

Chatting with writer friends both online and over coffee has been hugely helpful. They’ve contributed an unquantifiable amount to what one called a “paradigm shift” — and she was right. It was a significant disruption in my thinking, and in my sense of purpose.

Without in anyway losing my identity as an author, in 2014 I added the notion that I’m also running a small business. My product is the books I write. Then there’s the question of how I get them to readers.

In the last few months, I’ve ventured into self-publishing. You’ll have noticed that it’s created a fascination with Amazon, Amazon’s algorithms and the changes book-subscription services are likely to have — driving down the price of books. Self-publishing provides authors with data. This is game-changing. You can extract data on when your books are selling and correlate with promotional activities.

Speaking of which, I’m beginning to take my social media activities more seriously. I’m still at the point of roaming around and thinking about things, but the thinking is more refined. I’m looking at data from places like Twitter Analytics and realising that few if any of my promotional tweets lead directly to sales … and yet, sales go up when I spend time promoting on Twitter. Could this be the notion that selling something requires the customer to see the item seven times? If so, then maybe books aren’t immediate impulse buys.

I’m still traditionally published, with three short stories coming out with Escape Publishing in February, March and April next year. They’re all contemporary romance.

One thing I’ve thrown away this year is the pressure I felt to focus on a single subgenre of romance. So I’m happily continuing to write contemporary romance — you’re going to love my Valentine’s Day romance (but that’s another post) — and returning to Steampunk (love, love, love re-writing history), and indulging in paranormal romance (of which I read lots). What will that do to my brand? Make it shine!

Ilona Andrews made a great point the other day. She was discussing author branding and she said that the promise you make readers isn’t the particular subgenre you’ll write in, but the “emotional experience” you’ll deliver.

So I’m thinking (always with the thinking) about the emotional experience my varied stories deliver.

2014 was also the year I decided to commit to a weekly themed post here at this blog. Since discovering my tagline (it only took four years), “A Hopeful Romantic”, I’m pleased that my weekly post expresses that theme of hope and the power it has to change our lives. Flower Fortunes aren’t quite predictions. Let’s call them inspirations :)

The downside of being so busy is that I read less books than usual this year. A lot of what reading time I did have was spent re-reading old favourites.

So that was 2014. A year of change, reflection and new beginnings.

I’ll be sharing my publishing schedule for 2015 soon. Watch out for The Icarus Plot, a steampunk adventure in Victorian London’s crowded East End, which releases on January 3 and will be free that day, and that day only!

 

 

 

Demon Hunter is Free!

paranormal romance, demons, magic, romance,

Today is the official release day for my new paranormal romance, Demon Hunter. To celebrate, I’ve made it free (yes, free) for five days – exclusively on Amazon (which is the annoying bit – to get Demon Hunter into Amazon’s lending library, Kindle Unlimited, where it can go on being free for subscribers to read forever, Demon Hunter can only be listed with Amazon – sorry!).

You can bleed and die banishing a demon, but Fay Olwen discovers there are worse hurts. Betrayed by the Collegium and by her father, she must build a new life away from New York. Leopard-shifter Steve Jekyll would have her build it with him. But loyalties are never simple and new love never easy. When demons are unleashed, Fay tracks the evil back to the Collegium, and now all hell will break loose because Fay fights for the innocent, and Steve will protect what is his.

For fans of kick-ass heroines and shifter heroes who are alpha-male and sinfully sexy.

Demon Hunter is a paranormal romance novella.

Get it free, now!

You can read an excerpt or check out the app I created to accompany the book.demon

Friday-itis

*insert the cute cat photo of your choice where an exhausted kitten is sleeping*

It’s been a long week, made longer since the paving has started and that is noisy! Also Toby has to be kept inside, and watched when he’s in the yard because gates are open. It’ll be worth it to have a safe, even path and a raised garden bed (to hold up the new fence, if that makes sense? it’s doubling as a retaining wall) where the sand doesn’t avalanche down. But oh why does anything that has to be done around here involve so much mess and noise!

paranormal romance app,Meantime I’m creating a new app for DEMON HUNTER’s release on 17 December – sneak peek to your right! This is quite complicated, but I’ve written out a plan of attack and will get all my ducks in a row (ducks of the photo and audio recording variety).

THE ICARUS PLOT is finished! Well, the first draft is. Oops! I think I forgot to share it here. I’ve been trying to keep my Facebook page active, so stuff has been going to it. The draft blurb:

Ivana March runs a very special toyshop in the heart of Victorian London. The last thing she expects to see enter it is an earl. Not that she has time to entertain him. Someone is stealing children, and the streetkids whisper tales of a “Metal Man”. Ivana must find the monster, rescue the children, and if the earl really wants to help, he can come with her. Only, no one warned her she’d have to venture to places better left unexplored. A good thing, then, that the new Earl of Somer is a noted explorer. When the two of them join forces, what could possibly go wrong?

THE ICARUS PLOT is due out in January. As is a secret project (whisper, coastal romance) that I’ve signed up to even if I’m already insanely busy. I’ll be scribbling LIGHT KISSES (there’s a lighthouse) through Christmas I suspect. The joys of being an author *wry smile*

Do you have any Christmas plans? I was planning a quiet one anyway (this year has been insane!) and now I’m grateful because I might be able to catch up on my writing.

Before I forget, did you see the new cover for CURSES AND CONFETTI? Isn’t it pretty?

steampunk romance,