Saturday, January 18, 2014

Why my books might not be for you and why I'm okay with it...

Why my books might not be for you and why I'm okay with that...

Not everyone is going to fall in love with my writing and I'm okay with that. I write in first person present point of view. Almost all of my characters are from the south because I'm from the south and my writing reflects this.

My stories contain language, graphic sex, violence and sometimes drug use. All of which can be offensive for some readers.  For example my first book Beautiful Strangers is written in the point of view of a speed addict and it is written to make you feel as though you are chasing the high with her. Many readers have said they felt like they were experiencing the characters high while reading. My bestselling romantic suspense novel I'm with You has self harm and touches on mental health which can be a trigger for some readers.

If you love overly descriptive or wordy written filler then you aren't going to enjoy my writing. I write what I want to read. I am not the type of writer who will tell you the skye was the bluest of blues unless it is important to the story. I'm not going to write about it or waste my time describing something that I myself would want to skim.

Would I love to have everyone who reads my work think it's the greatest thing ever? Of course but I write for entertainment not to win any literary awards. I write real gritty raw romance that is full of angst and heartache. One of the best compliments I have received is on how real my characters are.

I'm still growing and learning each day that I continue to write. One day I hope you take a chance on me and fall in love with the stories I've written and continue to write... But if you don't I'm okay with that.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Facebook etiquette for writers part 1

Let's talk Facebook etiquette. Yes there is such a thing in the writing world. Hey I get it, you wrote this awesome book- you can't wait to shout it out to the masses...I wrote a book buy it-read it-love it- oh and leave a review. Oh and by the way I have a page go give it a like and share it with your friends This isn't too much to ask right?

There is a way to do things on Facebook when approaching authors, bloggers and readers. What? You mean I can't just friend them and then shove my stuff down their throat and expect them to love me and be my instant friend forever? No...

When reaching out to other authors and blogs here's some tips.
1. A brief message with hi my name is____ is a wonderful way to introduce yourself.
2. If you aren't familiar with a fellow authors work don't lie. Be honest.
3. There is a difference between a working relationship and a friendly relationship.
4. Sending other authors a message saying hi I just liked your page can you do the same is a turn off for most. There are groups and events for those type things on Facebook.
5. Messaging the same impersonal message to everyone can be tacky.

I used to think sending out invites to everyone on my friends list for page likes and events was  perfectly fine. Until I started getting bombarded with them from people who had never even had one conversation with me, not even hi thanks for accepting my friend request. Which I don't expect from anyone who is friending me from book world. But do not friend an author, blogger, or reader and spam them. And by spamming I mean sending numerous request to like 15 different pages and inviting them to 30 events in one week. One it's annoying and two people will unfriend you for less.

And most importantly everybody talks. If you say something on Facebook be prepared for people to know about it or don't say it. Screenshots people- people take screenshots so even when you think things are private they aren't.

I am sure I am leaving out something important but it's early I need caffeine and I'm sure there might be a part two to this post in the future. And I hope I made some sense.  Next post I'll be talking about reviews. Remember these are my experiences... You have your own journey ahead of you.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

My adventure in self-publishing continues

I have tried to write this post countless times and each time I've stopped myself. It seems no matter what you say on the topic of self-publishing someone will get their panties in a huge twist. Why? Because no one is allowed to have an opinion. This is my personal experience, I am no expert and I do not claim to know it all.

So what have I learned after navigating the scary world of self-publishing? A whole hell of a lot. I'd never be able to condense what I've learned into one post and have it make any sense. But I will share a few things I feel are important to know.

There is this wonderful thing called mutual respect... Meaning I respect anyone who has written and published a book. It makes no difference to me whether it was through self-publishing or traditional. Because guess what, writing a book is a huge accomplishment. Say it loud and proud - I wrote a book damn it!

Google is your friend. If you don't know something search for the answer. Or ask your writing community. There are lots of blogs that are on the internet to help you. I had no clue what I was doing going into this and most days I still don't.

Not everyone is your friend...yes I mean that some people can't wait to see you screw up, because for some reason they think there aren't enough readers to go around. Not true there's room for all of us. Be patient.

Don't bully your fellow authors. Just don't plain and simple. It's NOT a competition. Getting caught up in ranks is an ugly thing in itself. Ask any writer who's published a book, they've been there.

Bad reviews are going to happen. If you aren't prepared for people to tell you that they didn't like your book, chances are you aren't ready to publish. Do they piss me off? Of course I'm human, it's in my nature to want to be accepted and have my work loved. Does it stop me from writing, learning and trying to improve my craft? Hell no!

Sel-publishing is not easy and it takes a lot of work- a lot. If someone says it's easy they are a liar. In my opinion of course...

Did I jump the gun and hit the publish button with my first book too soon? Yes I did because I didn't know what in the hell I was doing.  Life is all about learning and growing.

I have so much more to tell you but I'll save that for another time. Next post I will talk about FaceBook etiquette. Yes there is such a thing... Shocking I know.

Remember this is my journey so it's not the same as anyone elses. It's mine. I don't expect you to agree with everything I said or go and adapt to doing things my way. I'm just a girl pursuing her dream and sending a piece of myself out into the world with each story I write. And in case I forgot to say it I'm indie and proud!

Monday, January 6, 2014

Clearing the air about Beautiful Strangers and Jaxson Hayes

*warning this post contains spoilers* If you have not read Beautiful Strangers read no further....

I understand that a few of you are unhappy with the way Beautiful Strangers ended. I'm sorry that the story didn't end the way you pictured it and trust me I love Jaxson Hayes he is my favorite character. It was hard not to let him ride off into the sunset with Grace. I tried to give them their HEA I truly did, but every time I wrote the end with the two of them together it just didn't feel right. The masquerade series at first was going to be three books about Jax, Evan and Grace, book one was going to be a cliffhanger with Jaxson ending the book with his pov. The last line was "getting on this plane without Grace is the hardest thing I've ever done and lying to her about my vasectomy hurt even more." Y'all would have been sending me hate mail had I drawn out the plot into three books because in the end Grace would have ended up with Evan anyways. So I took you my readers into consideration and I made a choice to do the series differently and make each book about a different couple in a different city but all featuring the masquerade club.  Now that being said because I love Jaxson Hayes he has a spin off novella series of his own that follows him and Sadie. The first two are in Jaxson's pov and the third is in Sadie's. The first of his series is out now -Blackened Heart. The second Wicked Heart releases this month.  At the end of the day these are my characters and I have to standby them and listen to their voices. I hope those of you who love Jax just as much as I do will give his series a chance. Last of all I appreciate all of you who have purchased, read and reviewed my books whether you love them or hate them I thank you for your time and honesty.