Today our blog puts the Spotlight on Author Alyssa Richards. She is the AMAZON BESTSELLING AUTHOR of the The Fine Art of Deception Series and The Alcott Manor Trilogy. Alyssa writes Romance, Paranormal, and Suspense novels.
Romance, Paranormal, Suspense
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**Start reading Alyssa's best selling Fine Art of Deception Series with book 1: The Fine Art of Deception for FREE on Amazon! Read all of Alyssa's books for FREE with KINDLE UNLIMITED**
ALYSSA RICHARDS is the Amazon best selling author of The Fine Art of Deception series and The Haunting of Alcott Manor series - a contemporary gothic trilogy.
She loves living in the South with her husband and two children. She also loves good espresso, her rescue dogs, magnolias and gardenias, and, of course, reading a great book. She grew up running barefoot in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina, where her favorite weekly adventure was a trip to the library with her mom.
SPOTLIGHT Questions and Answers with the Author
Congratulations on your book: A Murder at Alcott Manor. Do we have another novel from the The Alcott Manor Trilogy coming? Rumor has it that you have another book on the horizon called A Stranger in Alcott Manor. Can you tell us the timeline for its release and give us a little tease?
Yes! A Stranger at Alcott Manor is the third installment in the Alcott Manor Series and its due for release in November. Readers tell me they love the fresh direction this series takes on the typical Gothic manor story, that the characters stay with them long after they put the book down. As an exclusive gift for your readers, I’ve included Sneak Peek into A Stranger at Alcott Manor - hope you enjoy!
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?
Online is the best place to find me right now and I love to hear from readers!
- And my blog are pretty active places —
Alyssa Richards' blog.
I respond to all of my readers’ messages personally.
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?
Thanks! I worked with one designer for The Fine Art of Deception Series and a different one for The Haunting of Alcott Manor Series. When I’m working on a book cover with a designer, I study movie posters in that genre, particularly older ones. Maybe because my mind is more visual than most, but I love the way good movie posters make you feel their story. To me that’s most important and so with every cover I try to capture the mood of the book through the color and the imagery. The Fine Art of Deception Series is suspenseful, passionate, fast-paced. The Haunting of Alcott Manor is a contemporary take on a classic haunted theme, with lots of fresh unexpected turns. Two very different series, but I think their personalities shine through their unique covers.
I like the idea of bundling a series of novels. You have put together a set of your novels called The Fine Art of Deception Boxed Set. What was the impact on your other sales? What was your main objective in bundling your novels?
I wanted to make it easy for readers to grab the series so I bundled the first 3 together. I also discounted the box set as a thank you for picking up all three books at once. I think that might have helped things pick up initially. But now that the single books are in KU, I don’t know that it makes much of a difference to readers. More of them tend to find that series through KU.
What is your primary genre? What has been your best marketing approach to this group?
I love a good suspense story, one that takes me a while to figure out, one with characters I can invest in. So, that’s exactly what I write. Readers who know me, know that’s what they’ll get from my books. That sort of trust and dependability is a tremendous marketing tool, I guess. I think the best marketing trends back to building a relationship with your readers.
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 often give books away for free, especially the first book in The Fine Art of Deception Series. Since I’m still relatively unknown to a lot of readers, my goal in giving books away is to remove any barriers that might prevent them from at least trying some of my work. I also give away partial sections of my books, like the first several chapters. With all the books that are out there, it can be tough to get noticed, but I find that once readers discover me, they readily enjoy all of my books. My goal is always to find the readers who enjoy my type of stories and to build a relationship with them.
The only obstacles I’ve faced with giving away free books, is that sometimes Amazon can make it tricky to do so. They won’t let you price anything for free right away. And though t’s not really an obstacle, you do have to realize that only a certain percentage of those who picked up the free book are actually going to read it. Some pick up the book just because it’s free. Then they might forget that it’s in their kindle or get absorbed in another book, or it might not be their cup of tea.
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?
Right now my list is comprised mostly of organic sign-ups and those who registered to participate in a contest I’ve sponsored. People tend to sign up most when they read my material. By the end of this year I’ll have 7 books out. I’ll have 3 series, two of which I’ll add to, and a neat idea for a standalone book. (Although all my ideas for standalone books, thus far, turn into another series. So, we’ll see how that goes.)
You have a great blog. You do a great job keeping readers informed, marketing your books and helping other writers gain exposure. 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?
My primary goal with my blog is to communicate with readers. It’s an easy way to let them know about what’s going on in my book world. My secondary goal is to make it easier for people who are searching for books like mine, to find me. In terms of time, I often write from my car and when my family is sleeping :) After I drive my kids to baseball practices or wherever they need to go, I will often pull out my computer and write. Same for early mornings and late nights — it’s great quiet time for writing!
I like the idea of Author bundles. You are a part of a novel collection called Love Under Fire with twenty other authors. What a great group of outstanding people. (Many have been interviewed on this blog). What was your main objective in bundling your works with other authors? How do you communicate? How did you get involved with this group?
Love Under Fire is an extremely talented, hard-working group of authors who have pooled their writing gifts and resources to benefit Pets for Vets.
Pets for Vets is a non-profit that rescues and rehabilitates animals and places them with American Veterans. The Veterans, some of whom might have PTSD, or are otherwise in need of support and recovery, are partnered with a pet that is a unique fit for them.
My dad was a WWII vet, my grandfather was a WWI vet. Several of my friends are veterans. I believe in showing gratitude to those who have put their life on the line to protect our country. I also own two rescue dogs and have often helped our local rescue shelters. So when Judith Lucci offered me the opportunity to be a part of a group that gives back to these causes, I was thrilled!
There are also a number of personal benefits. Writing in community like this, with a common goal and shared interests, is so motivating, supportive and encouraging. Not to mention educational, and fun! We communicate electronically, mostly on Facebook. It’s amazing how seamless the behind the scenes process is. I’m honored and grateful to be a part of this very special group.
Author's Book List
A Murder at Alcott Manor
- The Alcott Manor Trilogy Book 2
Mason and Layla have waited a long time to be together, but her ex-husband could ruin everything from the grave.
Layla’s late husband left her homeless, broke, and with two young girls to care for. When she’s offered a caretaker position at her old manor home, she chooses to overlook the hauntings… and the spot where her husband was killed.
Mason left behind the stress of New York City finance for a simpler life in construction. He hopes the seasonal renovation job will let him reconnect with Layla. They were on the verge of a relationship 10 years earlier, until a brutal murder tore them apart…
When a series of strange happenings bring them together, Layla must tap into the manor's otherworldly realm to protect them. Mason may be skeptical, but will he believe Layla when she reveals the twisted truth about their past?
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The Haunting of Alcott Manor
- The Alcott Manor Trilogy Book 1
She has a gift. His family has a past. Can they solve a century-old mystery… together?
Gemma doesn't miss working for the family business. She has a knack for restoring older properties, but after a vicious haunting nearly killed her, she was more than ready to move on. Gemma agrees to one last job to save her parents’ business, but the 1880s historical estate has its fair share of dark secrets…
Henry Alcott wants nothing more than to free the spirit from his family’s property. Ever since the original owner was wrongfully convicted of murder and sentenced to death, the ghost has made sure every restoration effort was a miserable failure. But there’s something about Gemma that makes Henry believe in a much brighter future…
Gemma and Henry must solve a hundred-year mystery to complete the restoration in time. Failure to do so could cost Gemma’s parents their business, but staying in the house could cost them much, much more…
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Lost in Time
- A Time Travel Romance Book Series - The Fine Art of Deception - Book 3
Searching for the answers she needs, will Addie lose everything she has?
Adeline “Addie” Montgomery is searching for the truth. As she and Blake travel back to 1922, she expects her nemesis Otto is behind a string of art forgeries. The only problem is that the villain has completely disappeared. Addie must now find Otto without blowing her cover to keep the past intact, as long as a lover from a past life doesn’t get in the way…
Blake Greenwood wants nothing more than to catch Otto and return to the present with Addie, the love of his life. When his mother goes missing as well, he leaves Addie alone with his half-brother to save his family. As the future begins to change in unexpected ways, Blake and Addie begin to question everything. Can they find Otto and save their relationship before what they had disappears for good?
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Somewhere in Time
- A Time Travel Romance Book Series - The Fine Art of Deception - Book 2
One wrong touch could ruin everything…
Adeline “Addie” Montgomery has finally found her soulmate in Blake Greenwood. As the forgery trial begins for her former boss, Otto, her happily-ever-after seems to be taking shape. But when Otto puts everyone she loves back in danger, Addie must look to the past to make her future possible.
As Addie and Blake make progress finding her missing family, demons who’ve hunted her for centuries threaten to destroy the life she’s come to love. Once again, it all comes down to a choice: loyalty for her family or love for her soulmate. Her decision could transform the world…
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The Fine Art of Deception
- A Time Travel Romance Book Series - The Fine Art of Deception - Book 1
Her touch uncovers secrets. His secrets might be more than she can handle.
Art appraiser Adeline “Addie” Montgomery craves a normal life. But because of her gift, she’ll never know what normal means. She can touch any object and know its owner’s secrets. It comes in handy in her line of work, but it frequently wrecks her personal life. Addie one day hopes to use her ability to solve the disappearance of her father and grandfather, but her strange dreams of a lover from a past life seem to keep getting in the way…
The mysterious Blake Greenwood has an aura of danger that pulls Addie right in. As a client of Addie’s firm, he seems to have more secrets than paintings. She tries to steer clear, but the connection between them feels older than time itself.
Addie wants to take a chance on love, but will letting her guard down show her a life she never thought possible or send everything crashing down?
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Barnes and Noble
LOVE UNDER FIRE
From around the edges of every day existence lurks mystery, betrayal, greed, and death.
With every turn of the page, feel the heat of adrenaline as fear lights up the night. Fight alongside the tenacious heroes and heroines as they battle for survival. They'll put everything on the line to thwart the evil coming after them.
They want to trust in the power of love. But is it enough?
EVERY SALE HELPS a VETERAN get a PET!!!
Judith Lucci - RUN for your life
Stephany Tullis - Blue Lady's MISSION UNDER FIRE
Fiona Quinn - Cold Red
Anna Celeste Burke - Lily's Homecoming Under Fire
Margaret A. Daly- Monsters in my Closet
Linda Watkins - The Witches of Storm Island, Book I: The Turning
Tamara Ferguson - Two Hearts Under Fire
Suzanne Jenkins - Running with Horses
Inge-Lise Goss - Diamonds and Lies
S.R. Mallery - Tender Enemies
Jinx Schwartz - Baja Get Away
Uvi Poznansky - Virtually Lace
Kathryn Knight - The Haunting of Hillwood Farm
Stephanie Queen - Ace Under Fire
Casi McLean - Reign Of Fire
Valerie J. Clarizio -The Code Enforcer
Chris Patchell - Deception Bay
Aaron Paul Lazar - The Asylum: A Carmen Garcia romantic suspense novel
Alyssa Richards - Chasing Secrets
K.M. Hodge - Summer of '78
Pamela Fagan Hutchins - Buckle Bunny
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Barnes and Noble
Her husband's secret is priceless. Her attempts to retrieve it could be deadly.
Barbara had everything she ever wanted—a successful career, a loving husband, and a beautiful baby on the way. She even had the incredible gift to know everything about a person from hearing their name. But when Barbara’s husband somehow evades her ability and secretly clashes with a ruthless criminal, it sends her whole world crashing down. As if the resulting tragedy isn't bad enough, now a killer threatens everything she loves to reclaim a valuable cache of diamonds.
To protect her family, Barbara must use her gift and the help of a handsome archaeologist to find the stolen gems before time runs out. If she fails to discover the treasure and finally understand her husband's covert double life, then her once happy family will never be the same.
Chasing Secrets is a compelling standalone romantic suspense novel. If you like fast-paced action, sizzling chemistry, and second chance relationships, then you'll love Alyssa Richards' edge-of-your-seat thrill-ride.
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