Sunday, March 3, 2013

HBS Author’s Spotlight – Class of February 2013

This month we have a group of interesting writers with worlds of knowledge and expertise. We have seventeen authors this time around.

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.

I have added a new feature to the HBS Author's Spotlight, The Showcase. I have included those authors in this class. Thanks to the following outstanding authors for a great month.

Here is a summary of our February 2013 crew.

Ruth Cardello
Author Genre: Romance - Contemporary

Author's Blog: Bestselling Author Ruth Cardello Presents…
Website: Ruth Cardello
Twitter: @RuthieCardello
LinkedIn: Check Out LinkedIn
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Next Book: Rise of the Billionaire is expected to be released in April, 2013.

Social Media: I strongly believe that proper use of social media can help an author’s career… it’s about building a community with readers and other authors.

Support Groups: I belong to several writers’ groups and they each have a different purpose. I belong to my local romance chapter to learn about craft and connect with local romance authors.

Author's Book List
Saving the Sheikh
Bedding the Billionaire
Maid for the Billionaire: Ruth Cardello
For Love or Legacy

For the rest of the story...View Ruth Cardello - HBS Author's Spotlight

Michael R. Hicks
Author Genre: Science Fiction & Fantasy, Mystery & Thrillers

Author's Blog: Michael R. Hicks - I enjoy writing so you can enjoy reading!
Website: Michael R. Hicks
Twitter: @KreelanWarrior
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Next Book: Mistress of the Ages is the working title of the next book of the First Empress series…

Social media - and Twitter, in particular - has been absolutely critical to my success, so much so, in fact, that I wouldn't be where I am today without it.

Covers: I've created all my covers myself, using stock royalty free images from that I swirl around in Photoshop.

Book Trailers: I have to confess that the one book trailer that's out there was really only an entertaining experiment. I have no idea if it's helped sales or not…

eBooks: Kindle books, in particular - have changed *everything*. I wouldn't be here right now… I'd still be back at my old job, slowly going insane.

Free Books: The truth of it is that, when used effectively, it's hard to beat freebies as a promotional tool.

Author Blog: I'm sure I sell at least some books through my web site, but it's really just there as a place for folks to go who want to find out more about me and my work.

Author's Book List
Forged In Flame
Bitter Harvest
In Her Name: Final Battle
In Her Name: Empire
From Chaos Born
The Journal Of Avery Moore
Dead Soul
The Path To Self-Publishing Success
Season Of The Harvest
Legend Of The Sword
First Contact

For the rest of the story...View Michael R. Hicks - HBS Author's Spotlight

Tom Kelly
Author Genre: Mystery

Website: Tom Kelly
Twitter: @TomKellyWriter
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Next Book: Hovering Above a Homicide - The main characters in the book will return in a new mystery scheduled to be released June 1.

Social Media: … provides so much information now to so many readers that having a social media plan is critical.

Book Tours: … my mystery was picked up by Costco which is featuring it in its Northwest warehouses. I’ve been on a Costco tour recently.

Time Management: I’m not good at promoting myself – probably because of my straight news background – and have to push myself to do it all the time.

eBooks: Most of the business books came out before Ebooks became popular, so the marketing aspect has changed dramatically.

Author's Book List
Cold Crossover

For the rest of the story...View Tom Kelly - HBS Author's Spotlight

Jessica Kristie
Author Genre: Poetry, Literature & Fiction

Author's Blog: Google +
Website: Jessica Kristie - Author & Advocate
Twitter: @jesskristie
LinkedIn: Check Out LinkedIn
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Social Media: There is no doubt that social media plays a heavy roll in the success of a book or any product these days. If used correctly you can strengthen and expand your readership.

Book Trailers: I have the most fantastic book trailer for Dreaming in Darkness. It was a trailer that I think raised the bar for trailers… Trailers can be expensive and it is difficult to measure their success.

Support Groups: My biggest support group is all the other authors at Winter Goose Publishing. They are wonderful and talented authors…

Human Trafficking Cause: There are so many ways to get involved from donations to just being aware and educating our children. Depending on your desire to participate, there is a way for you to contribute.

Time Management: The hardest part comes after you finish your book, but you do have to finish it. Marketing is so important that I make sure to spend ample time on social media and building my readership each day.

Free Books: I’ve had tremendous success with Goodreads giveaways. The Kindle free days have found some success but the market is now flooded and the competition is great to even be successful giving it away free.

Author's Book List
Barbed-Wire Butterflies
Weekly Inspirations for Writers & Creators
Threads of Life
Dreaming in Darkness
Inspiration Speaks Volume 1

For the rest of the story...View Jessica Kristie - HBS Author's Spotlight

J. Eric Laing
Author Genre: Thriller,Young Adult,Horror

Website: J. Eric Laing
Twitter: @JEricLaing

New Release: Once Upon a Tin is a short little work—a novella—that offers a fictional exploration behind the very true and heartbreaking tale of the lost Franklin expedition…

Large Social media following: … only have of late begun to better understand how to make the relationship positive and productive both for myself and those who have put up with me there.

Writer's Groups: Independent Authors Network (IAN),Goodreads, Wattpad, Authonomy … plus.

Self-Publishing: Going it on my own, while I feel certain was among the best decisions I ever made…

Author's Book List
Once Upon a Tin
The Crooked Man's Mile
The Night Watch
Scissors & Tweed

For the rest of the story...View J. Eric Laing - HBS Author's Spotlight

Sydney Landon
Author Genre: Romance - Contemporary

Website: Sydney Landon
Twitter: @SydneyLandon1
LinkedIn: Check Out LinkedIn
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Next Book: I am currently working on the 4th book in the Danvers series which will feature Declan and Ella. I am looking at a late spring/summer release.

Social Media: I have formed so many relationships there (Facebook) and find the reader feedback and support invaluable.

Book Covers: Penguin Publishing … wanted a recognizable theme for all of the books in the series and I love the results.

Free Books: Amazon's KDP Select which allowed the author to have so many free days per month. I found this to be a great way, especially in a series, to get your name and story out there. I recommend that every new self-published author try that first.

Author's Book List
Fall For Me: A Danvers Novel
Not Planning On You: A Danvers Novel
Weekends Required: A Danvers Novel

For the rest of the story...View Sydney Landon - HBS Author's Spotlight

C. J. Lyons
Author Genre: Mystery & Thrillers, Romance, Medical Suspense

Author's Blog: Thrillers with Heart
Website: CJ Lyons Thrillers with Heart
Twitter: @cjlyonswriter
LinkedIn: Check Out LinkedIn
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Next Book: HOLLOW BONES … out in September … featuring Caitlyn Tierney.

Social Media: Facebook and my Thrillers with Heart newsletter are the two main ways I reach my readers.

Book Covers Design: I've tried to keep my name branding consistent throughout my cover design … and that's something I discuss with my cover artists. Then I usually give them an idea of the emotional impact I want a cover to have and they zero in on a visual way to evoke that emotion.

eBooks: Ebooks and the ability for authors to self-publish them has changed everything. I first began to self-publish ebooks the end of 2009 simply because my NYC publisher couldn't get my books out fast enough and my fans were clamoring for more. I realized that with ebooks I could keep them happy, get my name out to new readers, and even use the ebooks as giveaways and promotional tools…

I created the Buy a Book, Make a Difference charity.
It's tied to sales rankings of my books, so if my readers push a book high in the rankings or onto a bestseller list, the charity gets more money.

Author's Book List
Black Sheep
Blind Faith
Kill Zone
Borrowed Time
Lost in Shadows
Chasing Shadows
Blood Stained
Face to Face
No Rules, Just Write!
Sleight of Hand
Snake Skin
Nerves of Steel

For the rest of the story...View C. J. Lyons - HBS Author's Spotlight

Kellie Larsen Murphy
Author Genre: Psychological Suspense, Mystery

Website: the dog ate my novel
Twitter: @aguiltymind
LinkedIn: Check Out LinkedIn
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Next Book: Stay of Execution is planned for late 2013.

Social Media: When I first investigated self-publishing, I read a great deal about how authors should build a platform using social media. Although I still believe this is true, authors need to recognize that their platform is as much about learning from other writers as it is about trying to reach new readers.

Appearances: I absolutely do interviews, speaking and personal appearances. Most of my interviews have been online but I regularly accept invitations to appear at book clubs.

Book Clubs: In some ways, I have two book clubs. My personal book club is private and they were the first to read A Guilty Mind - long before it was published. What I like about using my book club to "test" my books is that they are all discriminating readers.

Author's Blog: My primary goal with my blog is to take what I've learned and share it with others.

Author's Book List
Stay of Execution
A Guilty Mind
Short Stories

For the rest of the story...View Kellie Larsen Murphy - HBS Author's Spotlight

Richard L. Sanders
Author Genre: Science Fiction & Fantasy

Website: Richard L. Sanders
Twitter: @RichLSanders
E-Mail: richard.sanders[at]richardlsanders[dot]com

Next Book: The Phoenix War, which will be the fourth in the series, should come out this summer.

Great Book Covers: I credit Sam Keiser for the beautiful cover art that my books enjoy. He's easy to work with, works swiftly, and is willing to take my ideas and run with them …

Handling a Writing and School Schedule: Simple, I neglect school and sort-of doing the bare minimum to get by adequately. That's an exaggeration but there's some truth to it

Free Books: If I have any success it is 100% because I've been able to give the first book in my series away for free. This serves as a kind of demo that allows readers to give my stories a chance…

Author's Book List
The Phoenix Crisis
Secrets of Silverwind
The Phoenix Rising
Betraying Nexus
The Phoenix Conspiracy

For the rest of the story...View Richard L. Sanders - HBS Author's Spotlight

Chad Schimke
Author Genre: Mystery & Thrillers, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Horror

Author's Blog: Chad Schimke
Website: Chad Schimke San Francisco
Twitter: @chadschimke
LinkedIn: Check Out LinkedIn
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Next Book: Secrets - released SOON.

Social Media: I’m fortunate that I’ve grown a sizeable social media following fairly quickly… I latched onto this idea of being ‘content rich’. I upload fresh content several times each week…

Book Trailer: I created all of the trailers using a standard digital camera for stills and video. I used simple software such as Windows Movie Maker and Audible for editing and adding special effects such as captions and transitions.

Writer's Group: San Francisco Writer’s Critique Group on Potrero Hill – Goodreads group. This is a very talented group of folks whose opinions I really value.

Free Books: I think readers appreciate the free book. It often prompts them to pick up another title because they enjoyed it. My main goal in promotion is to gain visibility…

Blog features Polk Gulch Graffiti art.

Author's Book List
Walker (Novelette)
Weirder (Novelette)

For the rest of the story...View Chad Schimke - HBS Author's Spotlight

Tara Sivec
Author Genre: Romance/Suspense, Humor, Chick Lit

Twitter: @tarasivec
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Next Book: Because of You, the next Playing with Fire book … release it early April.

Social Media: I absolutely credit social media for my success. Without it, I doubt anyone would have ever read my books aside from family and friends…

I started writing because I love it. I have a tattoo on my arm that reads “I write because there is a voice within me that will not be still.”

Book Tour: They definitely help with the sales and getting the word passed around that I have a new book out just in case someone missed the information on my own personal social media pages.

Unique Approach: A Merchandise Store called Cafepress… shirt that have favorite quotes from my books are definitely top sellers.

Author's Book List
A Beautiful Lie
Troubles and Treats
Futures and Frosting
Seduction and Snacks

For the rest of the story...View Tara Sivec - HBS Author's Spotlight

HBS Author's Spotlight Showcase

Clive Eaton
Author Genre: Mystery & Thrillers

Website: Clive Eaton - Author
Twitter: @CliveEaton
LinkedIn: Check Out LinkedIn
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Next Book: Operation Stonehenge

Book Idea: It’s a natural progression from my debut novel, The Pyramid Legacy,

Synopsis: The evidence is unquestionable - The architects of The Great Pyramid and Stonehenge were related!

Both the debut novel, and Operation Stonehenge, are out and out fiction. However, I’ve woven a number of facts together with the fiction. The challenge I set for readers is to identify which is which. Finally, can the reader solve the puzzles Ben Anderson faces, before he does? (assuming, of course, he in fact does!)

Author's Book List
Operation Stonehenge
The Pyramid Legacy

For the rest of the story...View Clive Eaton - HBS Author's Spotlight Showcase

Rayne Hall
Author Genre: Fantasy and Horror Fiction

Website: Rayne Hall
Twitter: @RayneHall
E-Mail: rayne[underscore]hall[underscore]author[at]yahoo[dot]com
LinkedIn: Check Out LinkedIn
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Next Book: Writing About Villains

Book Idea: My other writing craft books for authors (Writing Fight Scenes, The Word-Loss Diet, Writing Scary Scenes) are bestsellers, and I want to expand the series.

Synopsis: Learn to create the kind of villain your readers love to hate and remember for the rest of their lives.

Interesting: The book is practical and shows how to create great villains step by step. It helps with characterisation, motivation, dialogue, types of villain, using archetypal energies, avoiding stereotypes, how to write the final confrontation between hero and villain, making the villain scary, and more.

Author's Book List
Writing About Villains
Spells: Ten Tales of Magic
Beltane: Ten Tales of Witchcraft
Storm Dancer
The Devil Eats Here
Six Historical Tales Vol 1
Writing Scary Scenes
Scared: Ten Tales of Horror
Six Scary Tales Vol 3
Haunted: Ten Tales of Ghosts
Six Scary Tales Vol 2
Six Scary Tales Vol 1

For the rest of the story...View Rayne Hall - HBS Author's Spotlight Showcase

Katherine Logan
Author Genre: Romance, Mystery & Thrillers - Time Travel

Author's Blog: Katherine Lowry Logan's Notes from Tabor Lane
Website: Katherine Lowry Logan
Twitter: @KathyLLogan
LinkedIn: Check Out LinkedIn
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Next Book: The Last MacKlenna

Synopsis: I’ll give you two loglines. One tells Meredith’s story and the other tells Elliott’s:

The president of a Napa Valley winery has a detailed to-do list to follow to insure the successful launch of her new vine but breast cancer and a handsome Scotsman complicate her life.

Interesting: Meredith has breast cancer. When I started the story my sister-in-law had been battling the disease for ten years. After finishing the first draft, my other two sisters-in-law had mastectomies. At that point, the story became even more personal and for a while, I couldn’t write. My sister-in-law, Sally Manning, lost her courageous battle on October 29, 2012. This book is dedicated to her valiant fight.

Author's Book List
The Ruby Brooch

For the rest of the story...View Katherine Logan - HBS Author's Spotlight Showcase

James Moushon
Author Genre: Mystery & Thrillers

Author's Blog: eBook Author’s Corner
Website: James Moushon - Mystery Writer
Twitter: @jimhbs
LinkedIn: Check Out LinkedIn
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Next Book: Game Of Fire

Idea: We all know the CIA really has a domestic operation. And we know it is hidden from the public’s eye and it has no rules it has to go by. That fact takes the lead in this Jonathon Stone Mystery.

Synopsis: An explosion and fire rocks South California and it is quickly determined its arson. The timing of the incident was special because it interrupts the Tet New Year’s Festival and Parade in Little Saigon, just east of Long Beach.

I lived in Southern California for a period of time and I was always intrigued by the diversity of the people in the area and their traditions.

We had a Military Weapon’s Station right in the middle of town and that helped feed the image of something unknown being next door. This place was designated the Wal-Mart of the Pacific Fleet because of all the different types of weapons stored there.

Interesting: The book’s setting is in a large Vietnamese area of Orange County, California and it takes place during the Chinese New Year. The Chinese year of the story was the Year of the ‘Fire Pig’.

Author's Book List
Game of Fire
Black Mountain Secrets
Call Off The Dogs

For the rest of the story...View James Moushon - HBS Author's Spotlight Showcase

Elise Stokes
Author Genre: Young Adult

Website: Cassidy Jones Adventures
Twitter: @CassidyJonesAdv
LinkedIn: Check Out LinkedIn
Facebook: Check Out Facebook

Next Book: Book Three, Cassidy Jones and the Seventh Attendant, will be released this May.

Marketing YA readers: Twitter is my primary marketing tool, but you have to understand the culture to get the most out of it. If you’re not taking the time to look through feed and engage with other members…

Book trailers - My husband spent hours timing the music to fan art that young readers submitted for the video.

Author's Book List
Cassidy Jones and the Seventh Attendant
Cassidy Jones and Vulcan's Gift
Cassidy Jones and the Secret Formula

For the rest of the story...View Elise Stokes - HBS Author's Spotlight Showcase

Authors Recommended by: HBSystems Publications
They also sponsor: eBook Author’s Corner and HBS Mystery Reader’s Circle

This blog is for information only. It is not an endorsement of the product or services discussed in the post. This blog features author’s information gained from the author or the Internet and is by invitation only.
Permission from the author is required via email to publish this post. It is not a group, subscription or forum. Some links maybe affiliate links.
HBSystems Publications Copyright 2013

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