THE TATTOOED ANGEL – a Time-travel

Today, I’m going to indulge in a little self/book-promotion for my latest release. Actually, the word indulge isn’t accurate because the land of marketing has always been a very uncomfortable place for me to hang out. I might indulge in a long soak in the tub, or a really good book or movie, but promoting myself or something I’ve accomplished? Nope. That’s way out of my comfort zone. But authors have to wear a lot of hats these days, so I’ve put on my marketing hat in order to announce that…

The Tattooed Angel – a Time-travel is out on Amazon!

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This is the first book in a series that will span three and a half centuries. The premise floated around in my head for about five years, but there were other books in progress and since I always try to finish what I start, (even if it takes years) I waited.  It’s quite a bit different from my other published books – shorter, darker, with super-evil villains, light fantasy and historical elements all rolled into 85,000 words. Rather than ramble on, I’ll post an excerpt, and if you decide you’d like to read more, all you have to do is click on The Tattooed Angel – a Time-travel  and like magic, you’ll be whisked off to Amazon. Pretty cool, the way I snuck that in, isn’t it?

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Angela opened her eyes and saw roses. Red and cream roses scattered among green leafy vines on a rich blue background. She blinked several times before realizing the roses were embroidered on the underside of a canopy bed. Her head felt three times its normal size and she couldn’t make sense of her circumstances.

The last she remembered, she had pulled over to the side of the road in heavy fog. How did she end up here? And where was here? She gingerly lifted her head. Tapestries covered the walls of a spacious room. The large chest next to her bed held two candles, an earthenware pitcher and red goblet. An ornately carved chair sat in the corner. Dust motes danced in the shaft of sunlight that shot through an open window. It was all a bit surreal. Where in the hell was she? And why did she feel as if she’d been hit by a train?

Her arms trembled with weakness as she pushed herself into a sitting position. The covers fell to her waist revealing a thin white shirt with billowing sleeves. What happened to her clothing? She tried to bring her legs over the side of the bed and cried out at the sudden stab of pain. Her right leg wouldn’t bend and it hurt. A lot. So did her hip. So did everything. She peered under the covers and wrinkled her nose at the offensive smell that drifted up. Then her skills as a paramedic set in as she surveyed the damage. Her right leg was wrapped from upper-thigh to mid-calf in strips of cloth. Her right lower quadrant was bandaged as well. Her other leg was a mass of bruises and abrasions. Why hadn’t she been taken to a hospital? She swallowed, fighting the panic that rose in her throat.

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HAVE A GREAT WEEK!

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A BOOK REVIEW: YOU HAD TO BE THERE by Gene Gorman

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Gene Gorman’s memoir, You Had to Be There, is a roller coaster ride that takes the reader from Gorman’s childhood to the horrors of Vietnam, his descent into alcoholism, his fight for sobriety and following success as a salesman, entrepreneur, husband and family man. The one constant thread throughout all of this is his need to excel.

As the son of a father whose career in the Navy keeps him from home, and an alcoholic mother who drinks away most of the family funds, Gorman learns to rely on himself to provide the things he needs. His entrepreneurial spirit emerges at the age of eight when he decides to sell Christmas cards door to door. It never crossed my mind that I should give up just because a few folks slammed doors in my face. I remember that the directions said that it was a numbers game and that success was based on the “law of averages”—whatever that was—so I shouldn’t take it personally. I never did. Quite a concept for an eight-year-old. This perseverance and work ethic serves him well throughout his teen years, in spite of his growing addiction to alcohol and the anger he feel toward his parents.

His time as a Marine in Vietnam and the PTSD he suffers as a result, only fuels his need to drink. And he is a masterful alcoholic, pulling off ways to drink at the most inappropriate times, when almost anyone else would be caught. What I find surprising is his initial degree of success as a salesman while drinking on the job. That success eventually ebbs away, and he is not only estranged from his wife and daughter, but homeless. After multiple, ineffective stays in rehab and psychiatric hospitals, he finally finds his way to sobriety.

Sobriety doesn’t mean the roller coaster ride is over. Gorman is a man driven to succeed and that drive is full of bumps in the road. And once success is reached, he often feels the need to reset his goal and start over again. In someone less successful, this would be financially devastating. In Gorman, it seems to work just fine. At times, he comes across as cocky, but he tempers it by poking fun at himself. You Had to be There is an interesting, inspirational read. You can learn more about Gene Gorman at:

http://www.genegormansbooks.com

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WEDNESDAY’S WISDOM A Quote by C.J. CHERRYH

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It is perfectly okay to write garbage—as long as you edit brilliantly.
- C. J. Cherryh

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PULP FICTION BOOK COVERS THAT WILL LEAVE YOU WONDERING….

We’ve come a long way since  pulp-fiction book covers like these graced the corner drugstore’s book racks. Or have we? You be the judge.

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I’ve looked at this and looked at this and I can’t figure out what’s going on. What’s she hanging on? What happened to her clothes? Is her dentist about to lower her into a ring of fire? Somebody explain this to me.

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I wonder if this author went through the entire alphabet.

pulp 6

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I really want to read this one.

pulp_Marianna Mob

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I have no words…

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I hope Jane Austin haunted whoever did this cover.

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Happy Reading!

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WEDNESDAY’S WISDOM, A Quote By Raymond E. Feist

Raymond E. Feist

When you’re writing, the most important thing, your north star, is the ending. Every word you write should be weighed against that, and if it isn’t contributing to your ending, it’s a sideline and should be omitted. Readers know instinctively when a writer doesn’t have an ending yet.

Raymond E. Feist

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BOOKS, CANDY, AND THE CONUMDRUM OF SALESMANSHIP

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IS IT JUST ME, OR IS SHE A LITTLE SCARY?

 

The most frightening experience of my childhood had nothing to do with monsters in the closet, bad dreams, vampires, werewolves, or the latest episode of The Twilight Zone. Those were the things normal children were afraid of. Every spring, my own personal nightmare arrived in a box I carried home from my monthly Campfire Girls’ meeting. That box contained twelve slim boxes of the most delicious candy you ever wrapped your taste buds around. Chocolate, caramel, pecans and magic pixie dust… Delicious. Sorry, Girl Scouts, Thin Mints and Samoas rock, but they don’t compare to those little bites of heaven I took home with me.

Are you scratching your head? Wondering what I was afraid of? I wasn’t scared of the candy—that would be beyond weird—and I wasn’t scared of the girl on the box, though that would perfectly reasonable considering she looks like she could bore holes in a person’s head just by looking at them. I was afraid because I had to SELL something. To people I didn’t know. My parents were always good for two or three, but the remaining boxes had to be sold to strangers, who lived in houses I’d never been to, and though my mom or dad always waited for me at the curb, I had to knock on doors and talk to the people who opened them. My sales pitch ranged from ‘You don’t want to buy any Campfire candy, do you?’ to knocking on the door, waiting ten seconds, and then running. I was slick as snake oil.

I haven’t changed much. Writers tend to be introverts and connecting with people who aren’t in our inner circle can be uncomfortable. Particularly, if we want to sell them something. Like candy. Or books. Social media can make this easier, but we still have to come up with clever ways to get others to like our Facebook page, read our tweets, watch our podcasts, find their way to our blog, website or Amazon page and click buy. And somewhere, in the midst of building our platform, we write, which is all we really wanted to do in the first place.

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THE STUFF OF NIGHTMARES.

Just writing can be tough. Our muse dogs us when we try to ignore it, runs away when we need it the most, and, occasionally, points us in the wrong direction just to screw with our mind. And once we’ve painstakingly crafted and honed our work-in-progress, gone through everything we have to do to make it as near perfect as we can; we have to put it and ourselves on display. And risk rejection? ARE YOU KIDDING ME?

We’re writers, not salesmen, and marketing can be challenge, but the online writing community is both generous and welcoming and, fortunately, there are many writers who are willing to take the time to share their mistakes and successes. If you own an eReader you’re probably familiar with best-selling crime novelist, Nick Stephenson.  In addition to his Leopold Blake thrillers, he’s written two books on marketing that are full of great information. I’ve just finished Reader Magnets, Get Readers to Come to You, ( it’s free!) and about half-way through reading Supercharge Your Kindle Sales, which I think is even better.

I’ve also recently joined Books Go Social.  It was setup to help writers and readers find each other and I’m excited by everything they have to offer. It’s growing fast, so go check it out!

For now, I’m off to finish Supercharge Your Kindle Sales.

Happy Writing!

for 2415 blog.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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WEDNESDAY’S WISDOM a Quote by Michael Crichton

michael crichton

Books aren’t written, they’re rewritten. Including your own. It is one of the hardest things to accept, especially after the seventh rewrite hasn’t quite done it.

Michael Crichton

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WEDNESDAY’S WISDOM, a Quote by Stephen King

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“The road to hell is paved with adverbs.”

Stephen King

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Pivot Post Update

Diana Douglas:

M. Louisa Locke’s Victorian San Francisco Mystery series had me hooked from the beginning, but her success is due to more than just her talent as a writer. She’s graciously shared her 2015 marketing plan with us. We can learn a lot from this dynamic self-publisher.

Originally posted on M. Louisa Locke:

550px-Balloons-aj.svgThis  report on how my plans for marketing in 2015 are working can be summed up in one word: Super. But for those who are interested––here is a little more detail.

Recap of Strategic Goals:

Recognizing that the Kindle Unlimited subscription service on Amazon was undermining the effectiveness of the Kindle Countdown 99 cent promotions for my books, I decided to:

  • take my 3 full-length novels in my Victorian San Francisco Mystery series (Maids of Misfortune, Uneasy Spirits, Bloody Lessons) and my short story collection (Victorian San Francisco Stories) out of KDP Select
  • upload these 4 books into other bookstores
  • make the first book in my series, Maids of Misfortune, perma-free
  • advertise Maids of Misfortune as free through a BookBub promotion.

By the middle of January I accomplished all of these goals.

  • I uploaded my 4 books to Apple, Nook, Kobo, Page Foundry…

View original 925 more words

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CRUMBS FROM THE EDGE, An Entertaining Look At Just About Everything

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Char Bishop’s, Crumbs from the Edge, is an eclectic, beautifully written collection of short stories that range from a ‘you go girl!’ theme in Dancing on the Other Side to a young girl’s heartbreaking thoughts on her wedding night as she waits for her much older bridegroom to come to their bedroom in The Rag Doll.

Crumbs from the Edge gives us eleven tales, each with something unique to offer, and I thought I would touch on three of my favorites.

Letting Go is an endearing, sometimes humorous account of a woman’s conversation with her dead ex-lover’s ashes as she hikes along the bluffs of the Pacific coast trying to decide where to scatter them. She doesn’t seem that surprised that he begins by criticizing the red tights she’s wearing. I never would have allowed you to wear that. You always looked beautiful for me, and I enjoyed showing you off. Their conversation opens a window into the volatile, but loving relationship they once had. And how he sets her free.

Wheeling through Life is the tale of one woman’s love affair with her cars and how that love affair came full circle. I’ve never been a car person, but Wheeling through Life was a total blast from the past for me, taking me back to the days when my dad drove a pearly pink 1957 Chevrolet and my older brother had a 56 Ford that got 6 miles to the gallon when he could get it started. I love the way the story opens. I disagree that a passion for cars is the exclusive right of the male; I’ve loved the cars I’ve owned. Granted, I wasn’t as interested in what was beneath the hood as I was with the look of a car, how it made me feel, and where it could take me. You don’t have to be a car fanatic to love this story.

Powder Burns, my hands-down favorite, is the story of an unpleasant retiree who gets his comeuppance while on an early morning walk. Char’s description of his pre-dawn jaunt along a local golf-course trail is stunningly told, taking us from his unease… As he walked, the sound of his muted footsteps on the trail was magnified by the intense quiet… He suddenly heard howling on the far side of the course and felt a spike of adrenaline prickle in his arms. Coyotes… to a delicious moment of horror that would do Stephen King proud.

The Oasis Circle series is Char Bishop’s latest project and I had the pleasure of critiquing the first book in this three-book cozy-mystery series. By the end of the book, this little neighborhood of fun-loving, retired women and their comical dogs were my best friends. If I could figure out where they live, I’d move in.

Char’s gift for prose has been honed by experience. Before she decided to focus on contemporary romance for mature women, she was ghost writer for the nonfiction book, A Professional Treasure Hunter, has published and illustrated two children’s books, and written magazine articles, personal histories and professional newsletters. Her past writing experience also includes monthly columns and freelance material for independent Northern California coast newspapers and magazines.

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You can find Char at http://www.charbishop.com

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