Friday, July 3, 2015

Jami Gray - An Author Interview in the HBS Author's Spotlight

Today our blog puts the Spotlight on Author Jami Gray. She writes Science Fiction & Fantasy, Romance, Suspense novels. Jami is the author of The Kyn Kronicles series.



Author Genre: Science Fiction & Fantasy, Romance, Suspense

Website: Jami Gray
Twitter: @JamiGrayAuthor
E-Mail: jamigray@cox.net
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Google+: Check Out Google+
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
Jami Gray is the award winning, multi-published author of the Urban Fantasy series, The Kyn Kronicles, and the Paranormal Romantic Suspense series, PSY-IV Teams. She can be soothed with coffee and chocolate. Surrounded by Star Wars obsessed males and two female labs moonlighting as the Fur Minxes, she escapes by playing with the voices in her head.


SPOTLIGHT Questions and Answers with the Author

Let’s start with what’s next. Do you have another book on the horizon? Can you tell us the timeline for its release and give us a little tease?

Actually we have a couple coming down the pike. I’m currently finishing up a collection of short stories based in the Kyn Kronicles universe, which should be out in late 2015. There will be five short stories that follow the timeline of the series. Then, in early 2016, the second title in my PSY-IV Teams series, TOUCHED BY FATE, will be out from MuseIt Up Publishing. My project plate runneth over for next year as the ultimate goal is to have three novels completed by end of 2016 (book 3 of PSY-IV Teams, book 5 of the Kyn Kronicles, and the first in a new series).

Here’s TOUCHED BY FATE’s blurb:

Trusting him with her secrets is dangerous. Trusting him with her heart could be fatal.

As a specialized consultant for the Department of Defense, Risia Lacoste understands the bargaining chip of a well-kept secret. When her current assignment threatens to unearth her deeply buried skeletons, she’s forced into a high-stakes game of lies and loyalty where even her ability to foresee the future can’t predict the winner.

Darkness lies under the skin of every man, and PSY-IV Team operative and touch empath, Tag Gunderson, has the demons to prove it. Scarred by betrayal and disillusionment, he’s not Risia’s top pick for a partner in the game, but he’s all she’s got.

As the game draws them deeper into a pit of intrigue and their list of enemies grow, will Risia trust Tag with more than her secrets or will his demons destroy them both?

You have a good following on twitter. Since you started before the social media buzz, what impact has social media relationships had on your current success? How did you build your following in your niche? How much has it changed your book launch process?

My first book came out late 2011, and while I logically understood the concept of an author’s platform, I had no idea what I was doing. I created a website, set up a Facebook page, and a Twitter account, and then I flew by the seat of my pants. Six books and four years later, I still maintain a weekly blog, added an author page to my Facebook page, and Twitter just keeps growing. Plus we’ve tacked on other social media outlets (Google+, Goodreads, Pinterest, newsletter).

Social media is key in reaching your readers on a personal level. I tend to prefer Facebook, mainly because I don’t have to limit my characters, but I try to make sure I’m fairly regular across all outlets. Writers are reminded often to stay personable to their readers, and today’s social media can really give a writer that forum to make connections, not just to readers, but within the artistic community.

I’m an avid reader, so I have a long list of authors I follow. When I first set up my Twitter account, I went and peeked at who followed them and who they followed, and then I began to build my own lists. When I reach out to readers, I try to see it from their perspective: what would they find interesting/entertaining? Those are the things I try to share. As for book launches, I’ve found the writing community to be a wonderful source of support. Initially, for the first two titles, I used promotional companies to help me find blogs with readerships that fit my genre, but over the years I’ve managed to create a great network of readers/writers/reviewers that I can hit up. For example, this summer, Shadow’s Edge is up for free, and since I had the time, I decided to create and plan my summer tour on my own. When I reached out through my various writing communities, I was humbled by the massive, positive response that has allowed me to be all over the web for three months spreading the word.

Word of advice for those writers just starting out: be sure you reciprocate. Be willing to host writers on your blogs, whether you have a release out or not. That give and take is vital to a successful relationship with your writing communities.

Do you do any book signings, interviews, speaking and personal appearances? If so, when and where is the next place where your readers can see you? Where can they keep up with your personal contacts online?

I do interviews all over the blog-o-sphere. Every time I have a guest post, I put it up on my Facebook and Twitter so if readers want to follow along they can. Plus, I have a page on my website with my summer schedule of who’s at my place, as well. I just finished recording my second radio interview with Hollywood Book Trailers. That particular interview should be up in fall. On June 29, The Author’s Show will be broadcasting my radio interview all day. I can share I have tentative plans to attend both Romantic Times in Las Vegas in 2016 and RWA’s conference in San Diego in 2016.

You have great covers. They carry a theme and your brand with them. How does your book cover creation process work? Do you hand over the basic theme or do you have more of a hands-on approach? Do you get your readers involved in its development?

I have to credit Kim Killion and Hot Damn Designs for my Kyn covers. HUNTED BY THE PAST’s cover was done by the fantastic MuseIt Up cover artist, Celairen. I’m pretty particular about my covers. I think I’ve driven both Kim and Celarien to drink. Since I write in series, theme consistency is key. I want my readers to see a cover and go, “I know that series!”.

For the Kyn, I work with Kim, normally I have some vague idea of what I’m looking for, and she somehow reads my mind and manages to pick up what I’m looking for. With Celarien, I shared various images I use for character inspiration, general ideas and color schemes, and then we go back and forth. Cover artists are some of the most patient, most insightful artists I’ve ever met. Writers are great with words, but to create the visual from our descriptions take a unique and enviable talent. I haven’t yet got my readers involved in the process, but you never know what the future holds.

You have converted Shadow's Edge into an audio book. What has been the impact on your regular sales? Has the audio books gained a new audience for you?

Right now, SHADOW’S EDGE is my only book in Audible. My publisher, Black Opal Books, is working diligently to expand that, but the process is fairly involved. I haven’t noticed a correlation between having SHADOW’S EDGE in audio and my print sales, but I would love to have all my titles in audio. I know quite a few readers who prefer audio vs. book. I think if I could expand my audio offerings, I could reach a larger audience.

You have written a short story called Wrapped in Shadows which you bundled with some other authors. Are shorty’s one of your styles of writing or are they created to give readers a sample of your work?

Actually, shorts are one of the hardest story types for me to write in. As a series writer, I prefer full length novels. WRAPPED IN SHADOWS was my first attempt at shorts, and I was thrilled to have an opprotunity to give readers a glimpse into the Kyn world and discover some great writers. The collection of shorts I plan on releasing in Fall came about from this initial short. As a reader of series, I love getting a chance to see an author’s world and style before I rush out and snatch up every book they’ve written, which made me consider how I could tempt new readers.

I finally decided that if I could offer a series of short stories that followed the series, ones that would enhance current readers, but also work to lure new ones in, then I could also indulge in sharing what happens to my characters in between the books. Collections like this don’t just make your readers gleeful; they offer writers a chance to share the “off stage” life of their characters.

I like the idea of Author bundles. You are a part of a short story collection called Things That Go Bump For The Holidays Anthology. What was the impact on your other sales? What was the main objective of bundling your works with other romance authors? How did you put something like that together?

THINGS THAT GO BUMP FOR THE HOLIDAYS was a collective concept from the writers of Black Opal Books. We split into two groups: Paranormal and non-paranormal. Then we created two different anthologies. It was fun to do, made me stretch outside my comfort zone and attempt short story writing, but it also provided a great vehicle for readers to discover new writers. I think anthologies are a great way to get in front of new readers, but you, the writer, still need to be critical in which bundles/anthologies you want to take part in. You don’t want to be in an overly large bundle because you might get lost, you want to make sure your genre fits with the overall reader being targeted. As for sales, it helped give the Kyn a bump, and it still will bring in a new reader here or there.

What has been your experience in giving your books away free? Have you been involved in any other type of giveaways and how did that work out? What was your main goal in doing this? Did you run into any obstacles?

This question is so fitting. This is actually the first time I’ve given any book away free. SHADOW’S EDGE is free through the end of August. It took me a long time to make this decision because writing is not painless, much like any artistic creation, I pour my heart into my stories, and it hurts to give it away free. What finally tipped my hand, came down to time. With four books out in the Kyn Kronicles, one in the PSY-IV Teams, with a second on its way, I decided that if I wanted a way to push my stories to the front of the book herd, I needed a way to catch potential readers’ attention. While writing is an art, being an author is a business and logic dictates, if you can get a reader to pick up your first book, and they enjoy it, they’ll be more likely to go and pick up the next, and the next, and so on. They’ll also spread the word.

My goal with putting SHADOW’S EDGE up for free for the summer was to garner new readers, who’d go out and pick up the rest of the series, and if they were still with me, try my PSY-IV Team series. So long as I can continue to produce well written, intriguing books on a fairly consistent schedule, I’m hoping to keep my readers’ appetite fed.

Do you maintain a reader list? What are the methods you use to find your readers and create the list and the relationship? Do you use social media, forums, newsletters and/or support groups to build your list?

The only list I keep is my newsletter list. I only send out two a year, basically to help spread the word on new releases or specials. I’ve used some giveaway lists to help create that list (so long as the reader indicated it was okay to do so), and I have a link on my website, but most of my relationships with readers exist on Facebook or through my website.

You have a great website. You do a great job keeping readers informed, marketing your books and helping other writers with guest interviews. What is your primary goal? And where in the world do you find the time to create great novels, take care of the social media and maintain your blog?

Aww, thank you. When I first began working with an author platform, one the main pieces of advice I kept running across was to make sure you blogged regularly. Now for some that’s everyday, but I know me, and if I don’t want to end up bald, once a week is what I can manage. At first I used my blog to share my journey from final draft to publication, then again to share the ups and downs of writing the Kyn Kronicles, then to share when I added the PSY-IV Team series with a second publisher, then to tackle the various things I was learning as I went along (writer tips, challenges of a day job while writing, etc.).

Two years ago, because I didn’t want my blog to become repetitive I decided it was time to indulge my reader side, and I reached out to some of my favorite authors and spent a solid year doing one to two interviews a month of writers like Kevin Hearne, Jennifer Estep, Kaylea Cross, Cindy Gerard, Faith Hunter, and then I wanted to support other new writers I knew. Now, I keep a tab with all those who’ve been so wonderful to stop by and visit on their own page (Archive of Guest Interviews). I still host interviews, as a matter of fact this summer is booked. In between I still share the trials and tribulations of writing, and the other challenges I’m still facing.

Blogs are a wonderful way to share information and maybe help a fellow writer out, or share a peek behind the scenes for readers. My website is basically my place to share what’s happening with my writing, and share my discoveries. I have to stick to a schedule when it comes to social media, otherwise I’d slip into that deep abyss and disappear forever. I’ve managed to complete two full length novels (300+ pages) per year, but following a daily word count goal. When my job-that-paid-the-bills had to reduce their workforce, I finally decided it was time to up my game, and now I’m hoping to complete three novels a year. I know, juggling three series might just be enough to send me to the looney bin, but I’m not writing because I’m sane.



Author's Book List
Shadow's Curse - The Kyn Kronicles ~ Book 4
As the leader of the Amanusa, Natasha Bertoi thrives on chaos, but when tragedy strikes the Northwest Kyn, leaving bodies and betrayal in its wake, not even she is prepared for the fallout. With Northwest houses in an uproar and the Wraiths hungry for blood, all her carefully laid plans are put to the test as she wards off the greedy clutches of the ruling Kyn Council. Her plans and pawns are moving along nicely, until he joins the game.

Whispers of treachery draw Darius Abazi to the Northwest in search of justice honed with vengeance. After years of protecting the Council and its secrets he harbors no illusions on how lies can be twisted into truth. As death stalks the Northwest Kyn, he faces off with the beautiful, but manipulative Natasha to uncover the mastermind behind it all.

A dangerous attraction lures the two predators into a deadly game, where one wrong move could destroy all that Natasha holds dear.


Order the Book From:
Amazon
Barnes and Noble
KOBO


Hunted by the Past - PSY-IV Teams
A reluctant psychic who can relive the past, a man well versed in keeping secrets, and a psychopathic killer enter a deadly game where the past determines the future.Changing the past is an impossibility ex-Marine, Cynthia “Cyn” Arden, understands all too well. Struggling in the aftermath of a botched mission, which cost her two teammates, her military career, and a fledging relationship, she’s brought home by a panicked phone call. The psychic killer behind her nightmares has escaped military custody to hunt down the remaining teammates, one by one. Next on his murderous list—Cyn. Her only chance at survival is to master the psychic ability she’s spent years denying.The killer’s game brings her face to face with the one person guaranteed to throw her off kilter—the unsettling and distracting man she left behind, Kayden Shaw. Once she believed he’d stand by her side, until he chose his job and his secrets over her. A choice that’s left the scars of the past etched deep on her mind and heart.To survive this twisted game, Cyn must risk trusting her heart and accepting who and what she is, or lose not only her life, but the man she loves.


Order the Book From:
Amazon
Barnes and Noble
KOBO


Shadow's Moon - The Kyn Kronicles ~ Book 3
A blonde, a brunette, and a monster walk into a bar and all hell breaks loose…

It should have been the start of a bad joke, but Xander Cade, Tracker for the Northwest Motoki Pack, finds nothing funny about confronting an enraged shifter in a crowded Portland nightclub filled with unsuspecting humans. The resulting carnage begins to fray the thin veil of secrecy shielding the supernatural Kyn community from public scrutiny. It also ensures there is no escaping the one man she’s been determined to avoid, her alpha and mate, Warrick Vidis.

Dominating, protective, and compelling, he threatens her individuality like no other…

As the alpha wolf, compromise isn’t in Warrick’s vocabulary, but when Xander refuses to leave off the hunt for a killer, he has no qualms about using whoever or whatever is necessary to protect her and his pack. A series of unusual deaths, along with anonymous threats against him and the pack, begin to jeopardize his normally steely control. Add in Xander’s continual reluctance to fully accept their Soul Bond, and the line between intellect and instinct begins to blur, leaving him wondering if one woman’s love and acceptance will be enough to save both man and wolf.

As the danger escalates, threatening not just their pack but those closest to them, Warrick and Xander must find a way to trust each other and accept their rare bond, or risk losing everything—their pack, their friends, and each other.


Order the Book From:
Amazon
Barnes and Noble
KOBO


Shadow's Soul - The Kyn Kronicles - Book 2
All she had to do was keep one man safe…

Raine McCord has no problem taking down the monsters of the world, it’s one of the reasons she’s so good at her job. So playing bodyguard to Cheveyo, head Magi of the Northwest, as he consults with the Southwest Kyn should be an easy assignment. Unfortunately, the simple task turns into a nightmare when Cheveyo is kidnapped and Raine is left for dead by one of the Kyn’s most feared beings, a Soul Stealer.

The Stealer’s attack leaves lasting wounds, undermining Raine’s confidence as a warrior and damaging her unruly magic. Her ability to heal her mind and spirit hinges on the one man who can touch her soul, Gavin Durand. Compelled to face the emotions raging between them, they must embrace not only their stormy relationship but their evolving magic to escape the twisted threads of murder and betrayal to find Cheveyo.

As Raine and Gavin come together and begin to unravel the complex web of secrets and hidden vendettas haunting the Southwest Kyn, they discover unsettling new truths that threaten their very existence.


Order the Book From:
Amazon
Barnes and Noble
KOBO


Shadow's Edge - The Kyn Kronicles -- Book 1
Everyone fears what hunts in the shadows…especially the monsters.

It takes a monster to hunt one, and for Raine McCord, forged in the maelstrom of magic and science, she’s the one for the job. In a world where the supernatural live in a shadowy existence with the mundane, a series of disappearances and deaths threatens the secrecy of her kind and indicates someone knows the monsters are alive and kicking. Partnering up with the sexy and tantalizing Gavin Durand proves to be a challenge as dangerous as the prey she hunts.

When the trail points back to the foundation which warped Raine’s magic as a child, her torturous past raises its ugly head. Gavin and Raine sift through a maze of lies, murder and betrayal to discover not only each other, but the emerging threat to them and the entire magical community.


Order the Book From:
Amazon
Barnes and Noble
KOBO
Audible


Author Recommended by: HBSystems Publications
Publisher of ebooks, writing industry blogger and the sponsor of the following blogs:
HBS Author's Spotlight
eBook Author’s Corner
Top Shelf Author Advice
Mystery Reader’s Circle

Check out the index of other Spotlight authors. Spotlight Index.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

HBS Author’s Spotlight – Class of June 2015

This month we have a group of interesting writers with worlds of knowledge and expertise. The author interviews are a MUST read.

Be sure to check out what they have coming next for their readers. I try to pick authors who are interesting studies and ask them unique questions for our Q/A section.

Check out the Showcase feature of the HBS Author's Spotlight. I have included those authors in this class. Also, we have added the Author Bundles we have posted this month.

Thanks to the following outstanding authors for a great month. Here is a summary of our June 2015 crew.



Lauren Carr


Author Genre: Mystery & Thrillers

Author's Blog: Literary Wealth
Website: Lauren Carr Mystery Writer
Twitter: @TheMysteryLadie
Facebook: Check Out Facebook
Post with Profile + Interview: HBS Author's Spotlight

Amazon Author Profile


Next: Well, actually I have two projects on the drawing board. Open Season for Murder, the tenth Mac Faraday has just been released (June 1, 20150) and is already getting rave reviews.

Social media: The Internet and social media has had a huge impact on my success. As a matter of fact, I have come to rely heavily on it. I do practically all of my book promotion online. As a matter of fact, I rarely do in-person book events anymore. When I release a new book, press releases will go out to our local media, but I never follow them up or pursue local in-person events because I have better success with virtual book tours and the social media.

Reader list: My website has a link to my Constant Contact address book which enable readers who want to be on my mailing list to sign up. I will send out newsletter about upcoming releases and personal appearances (usually community education classes). Mainly, I keep in touch with my readers through Facebook and Twitter.

Appearances: Readers can keep up with my personal appearances by visiting my website at www.mysterylady.net.
My viritual book tour schedule is listed on the appearance page: http://mysterylady.net/Appearances.php


Covers: All of my book covers are designed by Todd Aune of Projeto Communications: http://www.projetoonline.com/

Writer's Hint: …most of the short stories I have written are left-overs, for lack of a better term. I keep a cut-scenes file for every book, in which I place scenes that have been cut, subplots that didn’t work out, or other “darlings” that I had to kill during my writing process.

Bundles: To tell you the truth, I was scared to death about bundling my books. I was sincerely afraid that doing so would reduce the sales of each book as a single. However, to my surprise, this has not happened. Some readers will buy all four books at once, while others will buy one at a time, buying the next book separately after finishing the previous one.

Giveaways: My success with free promos has been much better than other authors. It was a free-promo that brought me to the attention of readers. In August 2012, I did a free promotion for It’s Murder, My Son, the first Mac Faraday Mystery. This promotion ran for five days.

Reviews: My tour coordinator does set up for reviewers for my book tour. When advance review copies are ready, I do have a list of proven reviewers who I notify. Also, I will post it on Facebook, Twitter, and the rest of my social media. I never pay for a review.

Author's Book List
Open Season for Murder
Three Days to Forever
A Wedding and a Killing
Twelve to Murder
The Lady Who Cried Murder
The Murder at Astaire Castle
Blast from the Past
Shades of Murder
Old Loves Die Hard
It's Murder, My Son
Real Murder
Dead on Ice
A Reunion to Die For
A Small Case of Murder
Authors in Bathrobes


For the rest of the story...View Lauren Carr - HBS Author's Spotlight


Bette Lee Crosby


Author Genre: Southern Fiction, Women's Fiction

Website: Bette Lee Crosby
Twitter: @BetteLeeCrosby
E-Mail: BetteLeeCrosby@gmail.com
Google+: Check Out Google+
Facebook: Check Out Facebook
Post with Profile + Interview: HBS Author's Spotlight

Amazon Author Profile


Next: I am currently working on a sequel to Memory House called The Loft, Book 2 in the Memory House Series. Right now it looks like an August release date, and I will happily give you a teaser.

Social Media is something you either like or dislike. I personally enjoy Social Media and my reach has basically grown organically. I end up talking to people about books and become their friend, then their friends stop by and say hi and the stone keeps rolling.

Covers: …I now have a style that I believe reflects the type of stories I write and I've been extremely fortunate in finding a designer who so beautifully captures the moods. He knows my style so I send him sort of a synopsis of the story and if I think there are one or two key elements in the story I mention them and he magically creates these awesome covers. The designer is Damon at damonza.com
- he is actually located in South Africa, but with the marvels of technology, it's as if he is around the corner.


Giveaways: Back in September of 2012 I ran my first Book Bub ad and gave away Spare Change for free. I had almost 50,000 downloads and it led to a ton of reviews. At the time my goal was to give readers a way to find me. It was very successful but I can't really say if that would work in today's marketplace. Since then I do sale events, but haven't really done free.

My reader list basically comes from the people who follow my blog and subscribe to my newsletter.

Using your website’s sidebar to blog your ideas and information: I have a wonderful Publicity Director who manages to keep me focused and the blog current. She is most certainly a technology whiz. I really do enjoy the stories I write - there is a piece of me in every book, so my goal is to share that with readers.

Author's Book List
Memory House
Passing through Perfect
Previously Loved Treasures
Blueberry Hill
What Matters Most
Spare Change
Cracks in the Sidewalk
The Twelfth Child
Jubilee's Journey
Wishing for Wonderful


For the rest of the story...View Bette Lee Crosby - HBS Author's Spotlight


Vered Ehsani


Author Genre: Historical Fiction, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Mystery & Thrillers

Author's Blog: Vered Ehsani
Website: Me & My World
Twitter: @VeredEhsani
E-Mail: veredehsani@gmail.com
Google+: Check Out Google+
Facebook: Check Out Facebook
Post with Profile + Interview: HBS Author's Spotlight

Amazon Author Profile


Next: The Society for Paranormals series is having a great run on Amazon right now. And the rumours are true. The fourth book will be available for pre-order late July. The Fourth Mandate picks up where the Revenge of the Mantis leaves off - our heroine Mrs Knight and her supernatural crew are recovering from an epic battle with a shape-shifting demon, and everyone is looking forward to a wedding. This being Africa, nothing goes according to plan.

Social media: Social media is a funny business. I've been at it for a few years, and what I've learned is that people should be where they are comfortable. For example, I have far more interaction with readers on Facebook and on my website than on Twitter. And yet I never set out to use Facebook in that way. I just hang out there, find interesting articles, see cute cat photos etc. I think building a "following" is really about building sincere relationships.

Covers: ...it's been a learning process. I think I've finally tapped into where I'm supposed to be with my latest, Kenyan-based series (Society for Paranormals). For that series, I hooked up with a cover designer and we crafted the first 4 covers together at one go.

Free books: The first book of the Society for Paranormals series - Ghosts of Tsavo - is permanently free, and it's been the best decision. My intention was to attract people who like this sort of story and encourage them to take a risk on a new author. The free book has had well over 30,000 downloads since end of May, and this has translated into over 8o reviews to date (most of them 4 or 5 star), a number of very kind emails, and steady sales for books 2 and 3.

Book launch process: I first focused a lot on building my email list by giving away a free compendium on African paranormal and supernatural creatures, available from my website. That helped with boosting the pre-order sales which helped push the books up the rankings on launch day. I also ran a BookBub promo on the first book.

Reader list: Absolutely - I want to keep in touch with my readers and make sure they get all the special deals I offer! As mentioned before, I give away a free book from my website for subscribers. I don't send out a lot of newsletters and when i do, I make sure it's of value to my subscribers.

Reviews: I have approached a number of book bloggers, but most of my reviews for my current series comes from readers. I do give away a short story to people who post a review (assuming they email me and let me know!); there's one short story associated with each book, and they give more background to some of the characters.

Author's Book List
Revenge of the Mantis
The Automaton's Wife
Ghosts of Tsavo
Dragon's War
Dragon's Mind
Fatal Secrets
Lethal Takeout
Where Shadows Dance
Diary of a Part Time Ghost


For the rest of the story...View Vered Ehsani - HBS Author's Spotlight


Molly Greene


Author Genre: Mystery & Thrillers, Suspense

Website: Molly Greene: Writer - Blogger & Author, Gen Delacourt Mysteries
Twitter: @mollygreene
E-Mail: authormollygreene (at) gmail (dot) com
Google+: Check Out Google+
Facebook: Check Out Facebook
Post with Profile + Interview: HBS Author's Spotlight

Amazon Author Profile


Next: I’m currently at work on Midnight at Half Moon Bay, Book 7 in my Gen Delacourt Mystery Series, and I hope to release it October 1, 2015. Here’s a snippet from the scene that introduces one of the main characters, Captain Heywood McDuffy, a.k.a. “Duff.”

Social media: I fired up my blog and twitter account simultaneously in early 2011 and worked hard to build them both. But I made an error back then that is common to new authors on social media: I wrote blog posts almost exclusively for writers. I didn’t have a book out yet, I didn’t have readers or fans, so at the time it just made sense to share what I was learning with my peers. My posts became popular among other authors who were also trying to navigate the self-publishing learning curve, and they followed me on twitter and subscribed to my blog.

These author-to-author relationships have been ultra-important to me in terms of learning and support, and while some of my blog readers are also fans of my books, I can’t say my blog success has helped sell my titles the way some other successful authors’ social media efforts have worked for them. But I wouldn’t change a thing!


Covers: My background is in sales support – flyers, ad copy, etc. – so I know enough Photoshop to get myself in trouble. A professional cover artist did the first cover for Book 1, Mark of the Loon, when I published it back in 2011, and it was gorgeous. But after a while, I fooled around with another cover idea – the one I currently use – and liked it so much I decided to create my own going forward. My first cover design was the most challenging; after that the brand was in place, and each successive cover was a matter of finding proper images and adding the new title.

Reading group: I rely on my two trusted beta readers to provide feedback on works in progress, then a handful of my Reader’s Club members receive advance review copies of unpublished books and read and review for me. My goal is to have 100 ARC readers, and have 100 reviews posted within two weeks of each new book launch. So anyone who is interested in being an advance reader should email me right NOW!

Free Books: I’ve done half a dozen free promos, and only a couple of 99 cent promos. And I’m in KDP Select, so scheduling free or 99 cent days is simple. Since December 2014 I’ve been fortunate to have been included in BookBub promotions four times. So far, they’ve only accepted my titles for free giveaways, so I have yet to try them out on a 99 cent promotion – looking forward to seeing the results of that one day.

Reader list: I actually have two lists, the first one for subscribers to my blog, which is mainly other authors. I offer a free twitter tip sheet and a sign-up incentive for blog subscribers, and to date have about 1800 subscribers. I definitely saw an increase in sign-ups when I offered that giveaway as an incentive to subscribe. I use that list to send a blog excerpt every week, and included in each email is a link to my fiction novels.

Blog: My primary goal with my blog is to share what I – and other authors – have learned in the self-publishing process, and where we’ve succeeded and failed. As of January 2015, I’ve brought in more guest bloggers and am stepping back a bit from posting my own articles every week so I can focus on writing novels. I also spend less “real time” on twitter than I used to. Because, to answer your question, it’s a challenge to find time for all of it, and writing more books must take priority!

Reviews make all the difference. Last year I queried a million book bloggers to request reviews and it was tough and time consuming. Once I got accepted to BookBub that plan went out the window, as free book giveaways can generate dozens of reviews. So now I rely on my handful of ARC readers to post the first ten or so reviews, and then wait a while for readers to fill in the next twenty

Author's Book List
Lock the Cellar Door
Swindle Town
A Thousand Tombs
Paint Me Gone
The Last Fairytale
Mark of the Loon
Blog It! The author's guide to building a successful online brand


For the rest of the story...View Molly Greene - HBS Author's Spotlight


Annie Miles


Author Genre: Womens Fiction

Author's Blog: Annie Miles, Author News
Website: Annie Miles, Author
Twitter: @AuthorAnnieM
E-Mail: anniem828@gmail.com
Facebook: Check Out Facebook
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Amazon Author Profile


Next: I'm currently writing the sequel to Misled, which will be titled Mistreated: The Year of Ugly. It picks up where Misled left off, and the reader experiences more trials and tribulations with Annie, her mother, and Daniel.

Personal appearances: As Annie, I actually don't do personal appearances because I have to keep my identity a secret. Misled is fiction, but it's based on a true story--my story--and because of the delicate nature of the book, I need to remain anonymous.

Cover: I bought the image online and adapted it, and I used EM Tippets Book Designs to help me with the layout (http://www.emtippettsbookdesigns.com/). This is the only cover I’ve done mostly by myself, but I'm happy with it.

Book launch: I try to solicit as many reviews and interviews online as I can. There are a lot of writer sites out there, and it's time consuming to contact them, but they're the best way to reach readers, I think.

Publishing: It would be much easier if I could publish under one name. My mystery books have done much better than Misled has so far, and it would be wonderful to tap into the readership of the mystery books, but as I said, that's just not possible. It's also been harder to get bloggers to host me or review the book, since Annie Miles is an unknown author. Publishing under two names means twice the work as far as marketing.

Reviews: I mainly solicit bloggers for reviews. I'm happy to send anyone a free e-copy for an honest review, but I haven't sought professional reviews mainly because I don't want to spend the money so many of them charge.

Different names and genres: Changing hats creates a time crunch problem! I could save so much time if I wrote and marketed under one name. I think my ADD helps in that respect though! I typically hop from one thing to the next, so going from one persona to another isn't really hard, it's just time consuming. Writing Misled was therapeutic for me, but it was also hard to relive so many painful memories. That's how I got started writing the mystery novels--I needed to escape real life.

Author's Book List
Misled


For the rest of the story...View Annie Miles - HBS Author's Spotlight


Eric B. Ruark


Author Genre: Mystery, Science Fiction

Author's Blog: Eric Ruark's Blog
Website: Eric B. Ruark
Twitter: @ericruark
E-Mail: ericruark@outlook.com
Facebook: Check Out Facebook
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Amazon Author Profile


Next: Currently I’m working on the sequel to MURDER BEYOND THE MILKY WAY. The working title is DO ANDRIODS WEEP MAGNETIC TEARS. I’m about half way done and hope to have the whole book finished by December 2015.

Social media: I went on twitter specifically to find like-minded people, people who enjoy mysteries and scifi stories. I began building my following by retweeting #Mystery and #SciFi tweets and by using my FaceBook contacts to find Goth and Noiresque photos that I could write hard-boiled little blurbs to. Basically, I tried to give a specific audience what they wanted.

Short stories: For the most part my short stories pre-date my novel writing. I basically wrote the short stories to have fun... to explore “what if” scenarios, like can a person be in two places at the same time?

Advent of ebooks: Publishers and by default agents are looking for “the next big thing”. I had to recognize that the kind of things I enjoyed writing did not fit into that category. So as my goal is to be a best-selling “mid-list” author, I recognized that I would basically have to act as my own publisher and offer my works exclusively as e-books or print-on-demand. It meant changing my initial business model and doing the research to find another.

Free books: Everyone enjoys a free-bee. A lot of readers have picked up my free promotions. I began the promotions hoping to generate reviews which would then generate sales. But… the problem that I’ve run into (as have several other authors in my circle) is that just because someone took a free book, doesn’t mean that they will read it in a timely manner nor does it mean that they will review it.

Blog: My primary goal is to interest people in what I have to say, whether it’s a book review about Lance Armstrong or an experience I had in Spain with the actor George Hamilton (See my blog: Bird Watching with George Hamilton.) If they like those thing, then, maybe, that will translate into them wanting to take a look at the novels or short stories that I also write.

Reviews: I simply ask people who have read my works to review them. I take a chance since you can’t be everything to all people. Some people will like what I do. Some will not. All I ask is that if the reader doesn’t like something, please say what it is. Someone’s dislike may just be the next reader’s cup of tea.

Author's Book List
Murder Beyond the Milky Way
THE LITTLE TREE..... that would
The Card Sharp and other stories


For the rest of the story...View Eric B. Ruark - HBS Author's Spotlight


Bernard Schaffer


Author Genre: Contemporary, Crime, Mystery & Thrillers

Author's Blog: Bernard Schaffer
Website: Bernard Schaffer
Twitter: @BernardSchaffer
E-Mail: Contact@BernardSchaffer.com
Google+: Check Out Google+
Facebook: Check Out Facebook
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Amazon Author Profile


Social media: I've abandoned the idea that social media ties in with publishing success. In the old days, there was a mad push to build as large an audience as possible on Twitter and Facebook and Linked In and wherever the hell else. It's all a big waste of time. I decided a few years ago that I was better off writing. I could not care less about having a large audience or following on any of those sites, because it's all just voices shouting at one another in the stadium seats.

Interviews: I'll do an interview if I'm asked, normally. I don't seek out publicity. I don't want to go to old age homes or libraries and lecture about book publishing. I keep my head down and write. That's the only way it has ever been done, and the only way it ever will be. Each of us only has so many years at this, and so many books we can physically produce, before fate intervenes.

Covers: I spend a great deal of time trying to find the right artwork for each title. It's a slow, time consuming process. I've recently begun doing all my own covers, in both digital and print, and it's a serious job to do the formatting, titling, and sizing. It saves money and affords me much more control. I don't do the artwork though. I either hire people to do original art, or try and find that one exactly right piece that's already in existence.

Short stories are definitely they're own creature. It's a different method of pacing and narrative structure. Short stories are damned troublesome, to be honest. If they're too short, nobody will buy them because really, who spends .99 on a fifteen page story in this day and age? If they're too long, around the 12,000 word mark, people will complain that it isn't a novel, and you ripped them off for selling them such a short book for .99 cents. And finally, if you bundle a bunch of short stories together and call it a collection, it will not sell. Because short story collections have a bad habit of not selling. Ever.

Bundling is good because it automatically gives you more digital shelf space, and a fairly decent-sized chunk, at that. It gives you more pricing options as well.

Giveaways: I love giving books away for free. I think it's a wonderful way to introduce new readers to your work, and I'm grateful for the opportunity to connect with so many of them. It's been an evolving process since Amazon first introduced the program, and I'm still learning from it. Getting eyes on your work is never a bad thing.

Reader list: I have a mailing list people can sign up for, but I don't have to maintain it. It's automated. I use MailChimp, and when I remember to do so, I fire off an announcement to the folks there. I tend to use my Facebook author page a bit, because I enjoy interacting with people there.

Author's Book List
Grendel Unit 4
Grendel Unit 3
Grendel Unit 2
Grendel Unit 1
Superbia 3
Superbia 2
Superbia
Whitechapel
Way of the Warrior 2
Way of the Warrior 1


For the rest of the story...View Bernard Schaffer - HBS Author's Spotlight


HBS Author's Spotlight Showcase


Claude Bouchard
Featured Book: Sins in the Sun


Author Genre: Mystery & Thrillers

Website: Claude Bouchard Books - Crime Thrillers and other Stuff...
Twitter: @ceebee308
E-Mail: claude@claudebouchardbooks.com
Facebook: Check Out Facebook
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Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
I was born in Montreal, Canada, at a very young age, where I still live with my spouse, Joanne, under the watchful eye of Krystalle and Midnight, two black females of the feline persuasion. In a former life, I completed my studies at McGill University and worked in various management capacities for a handful of firms for countless years.

From there, considering my extensive background in human resources and finance, it was a logical leap in my career path to stay home and write crime thrillers.

My first stab at writing was actually in 1995, the result being my first novel, "Vigilante". Two others of the same series followed by 1997 but all three remained dormant until publication in 2009. Since, besides writing a stand-alone, six other thrillers have joined the VIGILANTE series. I also penned "Something's Cooking", a faux-erotica parody and cookbook under the pseudonyms Réal E. Hotte and Dasha Sugah. I'm currently working on "See You in Saigon", the tenth installment of my series. I have to say, I'm enjoying this writing gig.

Other interests besides writing and subtly persuading people to buy my books include reading, making noise with my six guitars, painting (oil and watercolour), cooking (year round though I love the grill in the summer), traveling and planning to work out soon. I've also been known to sleep on occasion.

Author's Book List
Sins in the Sun
See You in Saigon
The First Sixteen
Thirteen to None
Femme Fatale
Discreet Activities
ASYLUM
6 Hours 42 Minutes
Mind Games
The Consultant
Vigilante
The Homeless Killer


For the rest of the story...View Claude Bouchard - HBS Author's Spotlight Showcase


Teresa Burrell
Featured Book: The Advocate’s Geocache


Author Genre: Mystery & Thrillers, Thriller, Suspense

Author's Blog: Teresa Burrell
Website: Teresa Burrell
Twitter: @teresaburrell
E-Mail: teresa@teresaburrell.com
Google+: Check Out Google+
Facebook: Check Out Facebook
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Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
AUTHOR, ATTORNEY, ADVOCATE.

Teresa Burrell has dedicated her life to helping children and their families in both the courtroom and the classroom.

As an attorney in San Diego, Burrell maintained a private law practice for twelve years, which specialized in domestic, criminal, and civil cases. Her work in juvenile court focused on representing abused minors and juvenile delinquents. Burrell has received several awards and special recognition from the San Diego Volunteer Lawyers for her countless hours of pro bono work with children and their families.

Burrell has also enjoyed a satisfying career as a teacher. She has taught children of all ages with diverse backgrounds and special needs. After creating an after-school program that kept kids off the street, she received a community service award.

Now in semi-retirement in California, Burrell continues to educate groups about social issues impacting children and write novels, many of which are inspired by actual legal cases. She is the author of The Advocate Series which now contains five novels: The Advocate, The Advocate's Betrayal, The Advocate's Conviction, The Advocate's Dilemma, and the Advocate's Ex Parte. She is currently working on number six in the series.

Author's Book List
The Advocate's Geocache
Gaspar, the Flatulating Ghost
The Advocate's Felony
The Advocate's Ex Parte
The Advocate's Dilemma
The Advocate's Conviction
The Advocate's Betrayal
The Advocate


For the rest of the story...View Teresa Burrell - HBS Author's Spotlight Showcase


Dianne Harman
Featured Book: Murder in Calico Gold


Author Genre: Romance and Literary Fiction

Author's Blog: Dianne Harman Author
Website: Dianne Harman Author
Twitter: @DianneDHarman
Facebook: Check Out Facebook
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Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
Dianne Harman draws her stories and characters from a diverse business and personal background. She owned a national antique and art appraisal business for many years, left that industry, and opened two yoga centers where she taught yoga and certified yoga instructors. She's traveled extensively throughout the world, most recently dividing her time between Huntington Beach, California and Sacramento, California, where her husband was a Senator. An avid reader, Dianne brings the richness of her life experiences to her novels, Blue Coyote Motel, Coyote in Provence, and Cornered Coyote - all of which are available now in the Coyote Series.

Being a dog lover and having attended numerous cooking schools, she couldn't resist writing about food and dogs, thus the Cedar Bay Cozy Mystery series, which includes family recipes! Kelly's Koffee Shop and Murder at Jade Cove have been on the top of the culinary, cozy, and animal charts within a week of being published and the third in the series, White Cloud Retreat, will be published very soon. Kelly's Koffee Shop was recently voted as one of the top 30 Best Self-Published Books of 2014.

Several books in the series have been designated by Amazon as All-Stars because of their sales and Dianne has been named by Amazon as being one of their most popular authors.

An Award Winning Bestseller, Blue Coyote Motel was selected as a quarter finalist in Amazon's Breakthrough Novel Award contest, Goodreads Psychological Thriller of the Month Book, and e-thriller Book of the Month. Blue Coyote Motel and Coyote in Provence were finalists in Chanticleer's CLUE awards contest.

Blue Coyote Motel is a suspenseful love story which begins in the barrios of Southern California and spans the globe in such diverse locations as Provence, South America, and the Himalayas. The beautiful Latina, Maria, and her husband, Jeffrey, a scientist fired from a prestigious laboratory, struggle to build a new life in a remote Southern California desert area as owners of the motel.

Along with the anti-aging hormone, Jeffrey invents a "feel-good" wonder drug to help Maria with her depression. As Jeffrey becomes insane, he begins to experiment with the wonder drug. Six wayward travelers, including an alcoholic priest, a couple who own gold mines in Brazil, a depressed widow, a struggling salesman, and a Native American pediatrician, find themselves spending the night at the small motel. The next morning they wake up feeling better than ever. Has Jeffrey's miracle drug delivered? Or is the nightmare of addiction only beginning?

Coyote in Provence and Cornered Coyote complete the trilogy which spans the globe and introduces a character, Slade Kelly, a loveable irascible private eye, who many say has become their favorite literary character. The Mafia, food, wine, art, Provence, courtroom drama - all find a place in these books.

Author's Book List
Murder in Calico Gold
Murder and Brandy Boy
Murder in the Pearl District
Murder in Cottage #6
Marriage and Murder
White Cloud Retreat
Murder at Jade Cove
Kelly's Koffee Shop
COYOTE SERIES
CORNERED COYOTE
Coyote in Provence
Blue Coyote Motel


For the rest of the story...View Dianne Harman - HBS Author's Spotlight Showcase


HBS Bundles and Co-Authored Showcase


Featured Set: Deadly Dozen


Available at Amazon: Deadly Dozen


Catherine Astolfo
Title: THE BRIDGEMAN


Author Genre: Mystery & Thrillers, Literature & Fiction, Short Stories

Website: Catherine Astolfo
Twitter: @cathyastolfo
E-Mail: cathy@catherineastolfo.com
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
Catherine Astolfo retired in 2002 after a very successful 34 years in education. She can recall writing fantasy stories for her classmates in Grade Three, so she started finishing her books the day after her retirement became official. Her short stories and poems have been published in a number of Canadian literary presses. Her story, "What Kelly Did", won the prestigious Arthur Ellis Award for Best Short Crime Story in 2012. In the fall of 2011, she was thrilled to be awarded a four-book contract by Imajin Books for her Emily Taylor Mystery series (previously self-published), and has never been happier with this burgeoning second career! Catherine's books are gritty, yet portray gorgeous surroundings; they deal with sensitive social issues, but always include love and hope. They're not thrillers, but rather literary mysteries with loads of character and setting. And justice always prevails. Her most recent novel from Imajin Books is Sweet Karoline, a psychological suspense. Sweet Karoline hit the top ten of Amazon Canada on its first day of release.


Alison Bruce
Title: DEADLY LEGACY


Author Genre: Mystery, Historical Fiction, Historical Western Romance

Website: Alison Bruce
Author's Blog: alison bruce, have laptop - will travel
Twitter: @alisonebruce
E-Mail: abruce@alisonbruce.ca
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Google+: Check Out Google+
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
Alison Bruce writes mysteries, romantic suspense and historical western romance. Her protagonists are marked by their strength of character, sense of humor and the ability to adapt (sooner or later) to new situations. Three of her novels have been finalists for genre awards.

Alison has an honors degree in history and philosophy, which has nothing to do with any regular job she's held since. A liberal arts education did prepare her to be a writer, however. She penned her first novel during lectures while pretending to take notes.

Copywriter and editor since 1992, Alison has also been a comic book store manager, small press publisher and web designer. In addition to writing, she is the Publication Manager of Crime Writers of Canada, Arthur Ellis Awards Administrator, and part-time tech guru to the technologically challenged.


Gloria Ferris
Title: CHEAT THE HANGMAN


Author Genre: Mystery

Website: Gloria Ferris - Mystery Novelist
Twitter: @GloriaFerris
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
Canadian author, Gloria Ferris, began her writing career by writing and editing operating procedures for a nuclear power development. It was an exciting job, but opportunities for plot and character development were limited. So she turned to crime fiction and found it to be a lot more fun. Her first paranormal mystery novel, Cheat the Hangman, was a finalist in the 2009 Crime Writers of Canada Unhanged Arthur contest. It was published by Imajin Books in August 2011. In 2012, this novel won a new Canadian literary award for feel-good mysteries, nicknamed the Bony Blithe Award, presented at the Bloody Words Conference, Toronto, ON June 3. The award is for a “book that makes us smile,” which includes everything from laugh-out-loud, to gentle humour, to good old fashioned stories with little violence or gore. Her second mystery, Corpse Flower, went the distance and won the 2010 Unhanged Arthur Award and was published by Dundurn Press. Gloria moved back to her native Guelph in 2008 after spending 20 plus years in several small towns by Lake Huron which inspired the setting for her mysteries. The stories are written in a humorous style, but the crimes are deadly serious.


Donna Galanti
Title: A HUMAN ELEMENT


Author Genre: Mystery & Thrillers, Children's, Science Fiction & Fantasy

Website: The Element Trilogy - Paranormal murder and mystery with a dash of steam
Author's Blog: Donna Galanti - The Element Trilogy
Twitter: @DonnaGalanti
E-Mail: donnasgalanti@verizon.net
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Google+: Check Out Google+
Facebook: Check Out Facebook
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Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
Donna Galanti is the author of A Human Element and A Hidden Element (The Element Trilogy, Imajin Books) and the Joshua and the Lightning Road series (due 2015, Month9Books). Donna is a contributing editor to the International Thriller Writers Big Thrill magazine and blogs at Algonquin Redux. She lives in Pennsylvania with her family in an old farmhouse.


Kat Flannery
Title: LAKOTA HONOR


Author Genre: Historical Fiction, Paranormal, Western Romance

Website: Kat Flannery
Twitter: @KatFlannery1
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
Kat Flannery's love of history shows in her novels. She is an avid reader of historical, suspense, paranormal, and romance. When not researching for her next book, Kat can be found running her three sons to hockey and lacrosse. She has her Certificate in Freelance and Business Writing. A member of many writing groups, Kat enjoys promoting other authors on her blog. She's been published in numerous periodicals. Her debut novel CHASING CLOVERS has been on Amazon's Bestsellers list many times. LAKOTA HONOR is Kat's second book and she is hard at work on her next.


Jesse Giles Christiansen
Title: PELICAN BAY


Author Genre: Classic/Modern Authors of Literary Fiction

Website: Jesse Giles Christiansen
Twitter: @JesseGilesChris
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
Jesse Giles Christiansen is an American author who writes compelling literary fiction that weaves the real with the surreal. He attended Florida State University where he received his B.A. in English literature. He is the author of Pelican Bay, an Amazon #1 list bestseller, outselling Old Man and the Sea by Hemingway.


Rosemary McCracken
Title: SAFE HARBOR


Author Genre: Mystery

Website: Rosemary McCracken
Author's Blog: Moving Target
Twitter: @RCMcCracken
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
Rosemary McCracken is a Canadian crime fiction writer. Her first Pat Tierney mystery novel, SAFE HARBOR, was shortlisted for Britain's Debut Dagger and published by Imajin Books in 2012. Its sequel, BLACK WATER, was released in 2013. "The Sweetheart Scamster," a Pat Tierney short story in the anthology THIRTEEN, was a 2014 Derringer finalist. Jack Batten, the Toronto Star's crime fiction reviewer, calls Pat "a hugely attractive sleuth figure."


Susan J. McLeod
Title: SOUL AND SHADOW


Author Genre: Romance, Mystery, Paranormal

Author's Blog: Susan J. McLeod
Twitter: @SusanJMcLeod
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
Susan J McLeod was born in Rochester, New York, on October 22, 1957. She began writing at a very early age, when she discovered that she could invent worlds that were much more fun than the one she lived in. Worlds where candy grew on trees and rivers of chocolate milk flowed. Where adventures were always waiting to happen and no one had to go to school. Over the years, Susan visited ancient Rome, medieval England, and resided for a long spell on a starship orbiting Orion. A recent stay in Pharaonic Egypt resulted in her romantic suspense novel Soul and Shadow, which won a silver medal in the 2011 Reader's Favorites contest. It has been published by Imajin Books. Fire and Shadow, the second story in the Lily Evans series, was released in October 2012. Shell and Shadow is a novella that Susan wrote to raise money for Zara's Center. It was published in February of 2014. Susan also writes short stories and poetry, and has won awards in both mediums. She works for a non-profit family foundation that supports Zara's Center, a haven for AIDS impacted orphans. U2 sums up her philosophy in life when Bono sings "We're one, but we're not the same/we get to carry each other, carry each other."


Susanne Lakin
Title: INNOCENT LITTLE CRIMES


Author Genre: Mystery & Thrillers, Science Fiction, Fantasy

Website: C. S. Lakin - a novel life
Author's Blog: Live Write Thrive
Twitter: @CSLakin
E-Mail: cslakin@gmail.com
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Facebook: Check Out Facebook
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Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
C. S. Lakin is a novelist and professional copyeditor who lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband, dog, and three cats. The first four books in her seven-book fantasy series, The Gates of Heaven, have been released: The Wolf of Tebron, The Map across Time, The Land of Darkness, and The Unraveling of Wentwater (July 2012), allegorical fairy tales drawing from classic tales we all read in our childhood.

Lakin's relational drama/mystery, Someone to Blame, won the 2009 Zondervan First Novel award, released October 2010. She just completed writing her eleventh novel, a modern-day take on the biblical story of Jacob called Intended for Harm and her twelfth: The Crystal Scepter (book five in The Gates of Heaven series). Also available on eBook are two mystery/psychological dramas: Innocent Little Crimes (top 100 in the 2009 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Contest) and Conundrum. Don't miss Time Sniffers: a wild young adult sci-fi romance that will entangle you in time!

Lakin has two websites for writers: www.livewritethrive.com with deep writing instruction and posts on industry trends. Her site www.CritiqueMyMaunscript.com features her critique services.


Linda Merlino
Title: ROOM OF TEARS


Author Genre: Mysteries/Thrillers

Website: Linda Merlino
Twitter: @gooddaysnodays
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
I am a long hand writer. As a mother of three children with an itch to write, I had to find the time, anywhere any place. There was no sacred space in my car during soccer practices, under an umbrella on raindrenched sidelines, or in fast food restaurants and in chain hotels.

Those beginnings were many years ago - but I continue to be inspired by my children. Blessed in so many ways, I embark on this authors journey to invite you the reader to know and love my work.


Featured Set: Dangerous Encounters


Available at Amazon: Dangerous Encounters


Nikki Lynn Barrett
Title: Fallen Idol


Author Genre: Romance, Chick Lit, Young Adult

Author's Blog: Nikki Lynn Barrett
Twitter: @Stormgoddess925
E-Mail: nikkilynnbarrett@yahoo.com
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
I'm an avid lover of books. I've been writing as far back as I can remember, completing my first "book" by fifth grade in one of those one subject spiral notebooks. I have a passion for music, photography, jewelry and all things creative. I live in Arizona with my husband and son, but dream of being somewhere much colder and stormier. For now, I'll have to live that life through my characters and stick it out with the summer heat.


Denise Moncrief
Title: Cross Examination


Author Genre: Romance, Mystery & Thrillers

Website: Denise Moncrief - Suspense, She Writes
Author's Blog: Suspense, She Writes
Twitter: @dmoncrief0131
E-Mail: denisemoncriefbooks(at)gmail(dot)com
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Google+: Check Out Google+
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
Denise is a Southern girl. She has lived in Louisiana all her life, and yes, she has a drawl. She has a wonderful husband and two incredible children, who not only endure her writing moods, but also encourage her to indulge her writing passion. Besides writing romantic suspense, she enjoys traveling, reading, and scrapbooking.

Accounting is a skill she learned to earn a little money to support her writing habit. She wrote he first story when she was a teen, seventeen handwritten pages on school-ruled paper and an obvious rip-off of the last romance novel she read. She's been writing off and on ever since, and with more than a few full-length manuscripts already completed, she has no desire to slow down.


Jade Kerrion
Title: Carnival Tricks


Author Genre: Science Fiction & Fantasy

Website: Jade Kerrion
Twitter: @JadeKerrion
E-Mail: jade.kerrion@gmail.com
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Facebook: Check Out Facebook
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Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
Jade Kerrion, an award-winning author, got her start in fan fiction. She developed a loyal reader base with her fan fiction series based on the MMORPG Guild Wars. She was accused of keeping her readers up at night, distracting them from work, housework, homework, and (far worse), from actually playing Guild Wars.

And then she wondered why just screw up the time management skills of gamers? Why not aspire to screw everyone else up too? So here she is, writing books that aspire to keep you from doing anything else useful with your time. She lives in Fort Lauderdale, Florida with her wonderfully supportive husband and her two young sons, Saint and Angel, (no, those aren't their real names, but they are like saints and angels, except when they're not.)



Nancy Radke
Title: Height of Danger


Author Genre: Romance, Mystery, Children's

Website: Nancy Radke
Author's Blog: Show and Tell Bible
Twitter: @_nancyradke
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Google+: Check Out Google+
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
Nancy Radke grew up on a wheat and cattle ranch in SE Washinton State. She attended a one-room country school through the eighth grade. She learned to ride bareback at age 3 (Really! It was a common practice.) and when she got off or fell off, she would pull her horse's nose to the ground, get on behind its ears, and the horse would lift its head so she could scoot down onto its back. She spent most of her childhood exploring the Blue Mountain trails that bordered the ranchlands. She and a friend once took a trail that turned out to be a two day trip. They always rode with matches and pocket knives, so made camp and returned the next day. These long rides worried her parents, but provided plenty of time to make up stories. Her first novel was set in the Blues, and is entitled APPALOOSA BLUES. TURNAGAIN LOVE was the first one published. It rated a four star review from Affaire de Coeur. Scribes World said "Turnagain Love has some fascinating twists and turns, unexpected complications, and charming scenes." It is light and humorous.

Her next book was CLOSED DOORS, a novel about a man who couldn't read. This was especially interesting to Ms. Radke, as she taught remedial reading, sixth grade, and other classes as a school teacher. All her stories are linked by characters who know each other from book to book. For example, Zack and Jennel show up in two more books besides TURNAGAIN LOVE. Also her books have a theme, such as the theme for TENNESSEE TOUCH, which is that just being alive is dangerous, so you can't be so cautious that you miss out on life. Her favorite character is Hugo, who is the hero in SONGS FOR PERRI. Hugo shows up in SPIRIT OF A CHAMPION and in the first book of the new BROTHERS OF SPPIRIT series that she is writing with her son, Nolan Radke, entitled HEIGHT OF DANGER.

She has gone through survival and outward bound training, including long-distance ocean swimming. Facts from this training shows up in COURAGE DARES and SPIRIT OF A CHAMPION. Her western ranching background shows up in the pioneer series, The Traherns, and APPALOOSA BLUES, which is now available. Her critique group used to say that she talked and wrote backward. This really helped when writing the Traherns, as the dialect seemed very natural. APPALOOSA BLUES, an AMAZON TOP 100 BEST SELLER, is the common book for both the Trahern series and the Sisters of Spirit Series.

Ranch life gives a person a can-do attitude, so when she decided to write and produce a children's Bible on DVD, she never doubted she could do it. Never mind that she had to learn to use a Mac, Photoshop, and the Final Cut Studio programs. The first volume of the SHOW AND TELL BIBLE took eight years to complete. It is two hours long, contains 650 hand-drawn pictures, and gives the impression of a picture book being read by a well-loved parent or grandparent. Little children are absolutely enthralled by it. The second volume is three hours long, 850 pictures, concluding with Esther. It was finished in three years, so she really did manage to speed up.

The feedback from parents and kids has been tremendous. Nancy is working on the third volume now, which will complete the Old Testament. When the entire Bible is finished, she plans to do other children's books on DVD. And for her romance fans, there are more of those coming. For people who love cookbooks, those on Amazon are written by a different lady with the same name.


Nolan Radke
Title:


Author Genre: Mystery

Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads

Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
Nolan Radke was in Law Enforcement for 9 years, during which he wrote the Amber Alert Policy and several other policies and procedures for his department. He has an English Writing Degree and worked briefly as an executive editor at a publishing house. He has spent many years helping others with their books and has recently started to dedicate time to his own stories.


Stacy Eaton
Title: Six Days of Memories


Author Genre: Crime, Thriller and Mystery

Website: Stacy Eaton
Author's Blog: Stacy Eaton, Author
Twitter: @StacySEaton
E-Mail: Mybloodrunsblue@aol.com
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Facebook: Check Out Facebook
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Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
Stacy Eaton is a police officer by profession. Currently, she is assigned as the department detective and enjoys digging into cases and putting the pieces of the puzzles together.

Stacy resides in southeastern Pennsylvania and is the wife to a police officer and the mother of two. She is very proud of her son who is currently serving in the United States Navy and equally proud of her tween daughter who is a black belt and cheerleader.

Stacy also currently servers on the Board of Directors for her local Domestic Violence Center. When Stacy is not working her demanding job, or spending time with her family, she works on her business and volunteers with the World Literary Café. When there is time, she writes.


Sharon Coady
Title: Broken Lies


Author Genre: Contemporary, Romance, Paranormal

Twitter: @srcoady
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
Sharon Coady was born in Washington D.C. and grew up in Rockville, Maryland. After 22 years of traveling around the world because of her husbands Career in the U.S. Army, Sharon and Ed have settled in Florida with three of their daughters and five of their ten grandchildren. Sharon is a nurse working for the Veterans Administration. She is the mother of four daughters and grandmother to three granddaughters and seven grandsons. Yesterdays Memories is her first book. Writing has always been something that she has loved to do, after years of encouragement from her mother she finally got the courage to publish her first book. She has now finished writing her second book, a young adult paranormal which will be published soon and she has started work on a new adult novel. Once the third book is finished she plans to write sequels to both of her first books.


Amy Manemann
Title: Don't Know Jack


Author Genre: Romantic Suspense, Young Adult Paranormal Romance, Contemporary Romance

Author's Blog: Author Amy Manemann
Twitter: @AmyManemann
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Google+: Check Out Google+
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
Amy Manemann is an International Best Selling Author. She writes sexy and intriguing romantic suspense, young adult paranormal romance, contemporary romance (NEW), and dabbles in children's books. She resides in her hometown along the Mississippi river with her husband and their two children. When she isn't plotting her next book, she enjoys spending time with her family and friends, and diving into a good book. Amy is also a site administrator for the World Literary Café, an online literary community for authors and readers. www.worldliterarycafe.com.


Cathy Perkins
Title: Cypher


Author Genre: Mystery & Thrillers, Romance, Suspense

Website: Cathy Perkins
Author's Blog: Cathy Perkins
Twitter: @cperkinswrites
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Google+: Check Out Google+
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
An award-winning author, Cathy Perkins works in the financial industry, where she's observed the hide-in-plain-sight skills employed by her villains. She writes predominantly financial-based mysteries but enjoys exploring the relationship aspect of her characters' lives. A member of Sisters in Crime, Romance Writers of America (Kiss of Death chapter) and International Thriller Writers, she is a contributing editor for The Big Thrill, handles the blog and social media for the ITW Debut Authors, and coordinated the prestigious Daphne du Maurier Award for Excellence in Mystery/Suspense. When not writing, she can be found doing battle with the beavers over the pond height or setting off on another travel adventure. Born and raised in South Carolina, the setting for CYPHER, HONOR CODE and THE PROFESSOR, she now lives in Washington with her husband, children, several dogs and the resident deer herd.


Chantel Rhondeau
Title: Murderous Lies


Author Genre: Romance, Mystery & Thrillers

Website: Chantel Rhondeau - Romantic Suspense
Author's Blog: Chantel Rhondeau - Past Writing/Self-publishing Tips
Twitter: @ChantelRhondeau
E-Mail: ChantelRhondeau(at)gmail(dot)com
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Facebook: Check Out Facebook
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Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
I once thought a great mystery or fantasy book with strong romantic themes was the highest level of reading bliss. After reading my first romantic suspense novel, I never looked back. Before long, the need to create my own stories took over. I spend my days in the clinical profession of medical transcriptionist, but my passion is in the blissful hours spent with my characters in the evenings.

I live in the western United States, and when I'm not writing I love playing cards with my family, bowling, and snuggling with my lazy kitties.


Featured Set: Spring Into Love


Available at Amazon: Spring Into Love


Chantel Rhondeau
Title: Happy Endings


Author Genre: Romance, Mystery & Thrillers

Website: Chantel Rhondeau - Romantic Suspense
Author's Blog: Chantel Rhondeau - Past Writing/Self-publishing Tips
Twitter: @ChantelRhondeau
E-Mail: ChantelRhondeau(at)gmail(dot)com
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Facebook: Check Out Facebook
Post with Profile + Interview: HBS Author's Spotlight

Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
I once thought a great mystery or fantasy book with strong romantic themes was the highest level of reading bliss. After reading my first romantic suspense novel, I never looked back. Before long, the need to create my own stories took over. I spend my days in the clinical profession of medical transcriptionist, but my passion is in the blissful hours spent with my characters in the evenings.

I live in the western United States, and when I'm not writing I love playing cards with my family, bowling, and snuggling with my lazy kitties.


Kimmie Easley
Title: Tasting Los Angeles


Author Genre: Romance, Erotic, Fiction

Website: Kimmie Easley - Romance Author
Twitter: @KimmieAnnWrites
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Google+: Check Out Google+
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
Kimmie is an author who grew up traveling the country, rarely settling in one place for much longer than a minute. Being no stranger to heartache, she allows her unconventional childhood to fuel her writing. Kimmie is addicted to all things books, wine, cupcakes, and flip flops. She is a homeschool momma, southern wife, and pug wrangler. Kimmie can be found somewhere in the south writing wine worthy stories. Gutter Princess coming in 2015 from Swoon Romance.


Rachelle Ayala
Title: Taming Romeo


Author Genre: Romance Historical

Website: Rachelle Ayala
Author's Blog: When a Woman Wrongs a Man
Twitter: @AyalaRachelle
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Google+: Check Out Google+
Facebook: Check Out Facebook
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Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
Rachelle Ayala was a software engineer until she discovered storytelling works better in fiction than real code. She has over thirty years of writing experience and has always lived in a multi-cultural environment. The tapestry of characters in her books reflect that diversity. Rachelle is currently working on a story dealing with women and contemporary issues. She is a very happy woman and lives in California with her husband. She has three children and has taught violin and made mountain dulcimers


Abbie St. Claire
Title: Consolation Prize


Author Genre: Romance

Website: Abbie St. Claire
Twitter: @AbbieStClaire
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
I've spent many years crafting stories in my brain. Finally, after the encouragement from those that love and support me the most, I put my first story out by self-publishing in 2013. That first milestone created a writing monster in me that couldn't be stopped and filled a void I cannot explain. Each story is a true gift from my heart and a sacrifice from my soul, since I find it difficult to let the characters go. At home in Texas, my husband and I share our life with children that mean the world to us and include a couple of fur babies. When we aren't busy watching sports and betting on the game, we are entertaining with friends. I do have a writing cave, but honestly, most of my work comes from the kitchen, the heartbeat of any home. Since noise doesn't disturb me too much when writing, I can write and keep the pulse on the family at the same time. And... Possibly enjoy my favorite, sinful treat... Cookie dough! The writer-reader world is my lifeline. I'm addicted and each time I get a message from a reader, I'm thrilled. There's quite a few stories planned for the next several months. I'm hoping the readers fall in love with my next series, The Creek Series. A story that is guaranteed to bring out all the emotions.


Bonnie Edwards
Title: Sweet Ride!


Author Genre: Romance, Contemporary, Paranormal

Website: Bonnie Edwards
Twitter: @BonnieEdwards
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
For someone who's come to writing erotic romance the hard way...this rollercoaster is a blast! After many years at different, boring jobs, I'm finally doing what I love best. Writing hot, writing fun, writing romance! I live in the majestic Pacific Northwest where the rain makes it easy to sit in an office and write. But, even the rain can't make me give up my long walks in the woods where I dream up storylines and fun characters. To learn more about upcoming releases, please go to my website at http://bonnieedwards.com and sign up for my newsletter. Since I feel my readers lead busy lives, I only send out notices about new books, or special deals. I hope you'll take a moment to click and stay informed!


Stacy Eaton
Title: Liveon - No Evil


Author Genre: Crime, Thriller and Mystery

Website: Stacy Eaton
Author's Blog: Stacy Eaton, Author
Twitter: @StacySEaton
E-Mail: Mybloodrunsblue@aol.com
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Facebook: Check Out Facebook
Post with Profile + Interview: HBS Author's Spotlight

Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
Stacy Eaton is a police officer by profession. Currently, she is assigned as the department detective and enjoys digging into cases and putting the pieces of the puzzles together.

Stacy resides in southeastern Pennsylvania and is the wife to a police officer and the mother of two. She is very proud of her son who is currently serving in the United States Navy and equally proud of her tween daughter who is a black belt and cheerleader.

Stacy also currently servers on the Board of Directors for her local Domestic Violence Center. When Stacy is not working her demanding job, or spending time with her family, she works on her business and volunteers with the World Literary Café. When there is time, she writes.


Lyssa Layne
Title: Everybody's After Love


Author Genre: Romance, Chick Lit

Twitter: @layne_lyssa
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Google+: Check Out Google+
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
Lyssa Layne is first, and foremost, the proud momma to her precious daughter, AR. In addition to working full-time and being a mommy to AR, she is also an avid St. Louis Cardinals fan, a runner, blogger, and an infertility survivor. Having watched one too many medical dramas and being inspired by author Rachelle Ayala, who introduced her to the world of indie writing, Lyssa decided to try her hand at writing a romance story. Her attempt turned into the Burning Lovesick series. You can find Lyssa's own interests throughout her stories although all stories are fictional.


Jade Kerrion
Title: Betrayed


Author Genre: Science Fiction & Fantasy

Website: Jade Kerrion
Twitter: @JadeKerrion
E-Mail: jade.kerrion@gmail.com
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Facebook: Check Out Facebook
Post with Profile + Interview: HBS Author's Spotlight

Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
Jade Kerrion, an award-winning author, got her start in fan fiction. She developed a loyal reader base with her fan fiction series based on the MMORPG Guild Wars. She was accused of keeping her readers up at night, distracting them from work, housework, homework, and (far worse), from actually playing Guild Wars.

And then she wondered why just screw up the time management skills of gamers? Why not aspire to screw everyone else up too? So here she is, writing books that aspire to keep you from doing anything else useful with your time. She lives in Fort Lauderdale, Florida with her wonderfully supportive husband and her two young sons, Saint and Angel, (no, those aren't their real names, but they are like saints and angels, except when they're not.)



Michele Shriver
Title: Finding Forever


Author Genre: Real Life Women’s Fiction, Chick Lit

Website: Michele Shriver
Author's Blog: Michele Shriver - Author of Real Life Women's Fiction
Twitter: @micheleshriver
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Facebook: Check Out Facebook
Post with Profile + Interview: HBS Author's Spotlight

Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
I was born in Iowa and raised in Texas and now live in Iowa again. I am proud to consider both states to be home, and therefore poke fun at both of them, but it's always meant in the nicest way possible. I am a practicing attorney with a focus on juvenile law and have also worked as an educator, and some of my experiences have found their way into my writing. My dream is to someday pay the bills as a writer and be able to spend winters in the Dallas area going to Dallas Stars hockey games. In my free time, when I'm not writing, I am probably at a Zumba class, riding my bike, watching a football, hockey or soccer game on TV, or enjoying a glass of wine while I lose myself in a good book written by someone else.


Marcia James
Title: Love Unleashed


Author Genre: Romance

Website: Marcia James Web Site
Twitter: @Marcia_James
E-Mail: Marcia@MarciaJames.net
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
Google+: Check Out Google+
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Amazon Author Profile


Author Description:
Marcia James writes hot, humorous romances and finaled in eleven Romance Writers of America contests before selling her first comic romantic suspense, At Her Command. Her latest releases are Sex & the Single Therapist (a comic romantic mystery), Heating Up the Holidays (a romantic Christmas novella), and Love Unleashed (a super sexy reunion romance). In her eclectic career, she has shot submarine training videos, organized celebrity-filled nonprofit events and had her wedding covered by People Magazine. After years of dealing with such sexy topics as how to safely install traffic lights, she is enjoying "researching" and plotting her novels' steamy love scenes with her husband and hero of many years.


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