Today our blog puts the Spotlight on B&N Humor Bestseller Author Caroline Fardig. She writes Mystery, Romance and Chick Lit.
Mystery, Romance, Chick Lit
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CAROLINE FARDIG was born and raised in a small town in Indiana. Her working career has been rather eclectic thus far, with occupations including schoolteacher, church organist, insurance agent, funeral parlor associate, and stay-at-home mom. Finally realizing that she wants to be a writer when she grows up, Caroline has released her debut novel, IT'S JUST A LITTLE CRUSH, now a #1 Bestseller. She is currently hard at work churning out a second novel in the LIZZIE HART MYSTERIES series. She still lives in that same small town with an understanding husband, two sweet kids, two energetic dogs, and one malevolent cat.
SPOTLIGHT Questions and Answers with the Author
Congratulations on your book: IT'S JUST A LITTLE CRUSH. Let’s start with what’s next. Can you tell us the timeline for its release and give us a little tease?
THAT OLD BLACK MAGIC, the sequel to IT’S JUST A LITTLE CRUSH, is in its final editing stage. I don’t have a timeline for the release just yet because I’m currently shopping for a literary agent.
THAT OLD BLACK MAGIC brings Lizzie’s ex back into her life after his brother is murdered. Poor Lizzie ends up juggling a murder investigation, a wacky Wiccan coven, and two men vying for her attention—all the while nursing injuries left over from the last time she decided to play detective.
You have a good following on twitter. How important have your social media relationships been? Do you see a carry over to your writing success?
I think social media plays a critical role in marketing books. My Twitter followers have been great about retweeting me and helping me get the word out about my book. I think having a presence on Twitter, Facebook, and Goodreads has made a deep impact on my sales. Aside from the marketing aspect, I have made a lot of wonderful and unexpected friendships along the way.
Do you do 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 will be the guest of a couple of book clubs in my area this month. My next interview will be on bestselling author Jan Moran’s blog, and InD'Tale Magazine will be publishing a review of IT’S JUST A LITTLE CRUSH in next month’s issue.
Check my Social Media contact for more informaTion. (see links above.)
You have a great cover on you debut novel. 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?
Thank you! The cover was completely my baby. I came up with the idea and (badly) sketched it out, then had a friend take the photo. I photoshopped it myself and put it together. I even made the newspaper prop that the model is holding!
What writer support groups do you belong too? Do they help with the writing, marketing and the publishing process?
I belong to the Midwest Writers Guild, which meets monthly to discuss writing and marketing. My SJ Publicity family and Facebook’s Chick Lit Goddesses have both been fantastic support systems as well.
Between your book writing, blogging, marketing, family, dogs and cat and all the other things that can get in your way, how do you manage your time? Do you have a set schedule or do your sort of play it by ear?
I am horrible at time management! I would love to have a schedule, but I always seem to end up flying by the seat of my pants. I try to do my writing job during the day when my kids are at school, and then I also work a little at nighttime after everyone has gone to bed. I tweet and answer emails while I’m waiting in the parking lot to pick my kids up from school or sports practice. Every little bit helps.
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?
I think giveaways are a good way to get your book noticed. I did a Goodreads giveaway a while back and had a positive response—a few hundred people added my book to their “to-read” list. Right now I have a couple of giveaways going on, and they seem to be doing well, and I’ve given away several copies locally for various fundraisers. I really haven’t run into any obstacles—so far the experience has been great!
Have you ever done a book tour? If so, did it contribute to the success of your book sales?
I haven’t done a physical tour, but I recently did a blog tour, and it was a huge success. I timed it in conjunction with a big promo that my publicist, Sarka-Jonae of SJ Publicity, put together, and I had a crazy amount of hits on my blog. I had to buy more bandwidth for my blog to keep up with the traffic!
What is your method of getting reviews for your novels? Do you seek professional reviews or do you rely on your reading audience to supply them?
I get reviews through a variety of sources. My publicist and I have been seeking professional reviews, which have been extremely positive so far. I also do review exchanges with other indie authors, and as a result, I get to read a lot of great books. I also welcome my readers to review my books—if someone mentions that they read my book and liked it, I ask them if they wouldn’t mind putting a short review on Amazon or Barnes & Noble.
You have a great book trailer. (See link below.) It looks very professional. Do you know how much impact they have had on your book’s success? Tell us about the process that you used to create your trailers? Do you use the trailer in your character development? Are the pictures and background the way you see your characters and scenes?
I really love my book trailer. Apex Reviews put it together for me. It’s fun to have a trailer available for people to watch, but I’m not completely sold on the idea that book trailers themselves drive sales. The small town shot they put in the trailer is dead-on. Every town square in my area looks exactly like that photo, down to the mismatched buildings crammed up next to each other. Lizzie is perfect, too, although Blake looks different in my head. I think female writers always have a pretty specific picture in mind for their leading man.
Author's Book List
It's Just a Little Crush
- A Lizzie Hart Mystery
The sleepy town of Liberty hasn’t seen murder in…well…ever. Residents are stunned when the body of a young woman is found strangled, and reporters at the Liberty Chronicle are thrilled, rather disturbingly, over the biggest news story to hit town this century.
Lizzie Hart has even bigger problems. Lately, she can’t seem to concentrate on her job as copy editor at the Chronicle with the new hunky investigative reporter, Blake Morgan, swaggering around the office. How can a girl work when she’s using all of her energy combating Blake-induced hot flashes and struggling to repress the giggly inner schoolgirl that’s constantly rearing her dorky head? It’s a good thing that Blake barely knows Lizzie exists.
After an odd string of events, however, Lizzie begins to wonder if Blake is really as fabulous as she has fantasized. When Lizzie and Blake find a co-worker dead, Blake’s personality changes completely—and not in a good way. Even though the police rule the death as an accident, Lizzie immediately suspects foul play and senses a connection to the recent murder. She is determined to bring the killer to justice, but is having some trouble getting her Nancy Drew on thanks to the pesky stalker she’s picked up—Blake Morgan. Wait, didn’t she want him to follow her around and pay attention to her? Not like this. Blake has turned from cool and smooth to cold and downright scary, making Lizzie wonder if he should be next on her suspect list.
"Our two murders were crimes of passion—they weren't premeditated."
"How do you know that?"
"Stranglings are rarely premeditated, unless you're like a total psycho serial killer. Normal people don't decide to commit murder and purposely go empty-handed figuring, 'Oh, I'll just wing it when I get there.'"
"Normal people?" Blake leans his head back and laughs. "I love to listen to you reason things out." Did he mean that in a good way? I blush as he continues, "What about Hannah, though? Premeditated?"
"And your reasoning on that one?"
I explain, "The killer used the tools at hand. Chase her into the puddle; throw in the radio sitting next to it. Instant murder."
It's Just a Little Crush
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