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Topics - Amy Corwin

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Writers' Cafe / Looking for Historical Romance/Regency Cover Artist
« on: September 30, 2016, 01:29:55 pm »
Looking through past KB posts and searching online, I haven't really been able to find a cover artist with a portfolio that includes Regency/Historical Romance covers that really look fresh.

I'll be coming out with a new Regency (sweet) in about three months and I wanted to start working with an artist to create a cover so that I can do a reveal and begin talking about the book in advance of release.

What I'm looking for is a fresh take on historical romance/Regency. Right now, the current trend is still big, swirly skirts. I'm okay with that, but I'd like it to be a little fresher with richer colors. So many covers look washed out/tired. I'd be open to a new slant on Regency's--something light, new, with a bit of mystery. The book is a single title--not part of one of my existing series.

Let me know if this is something that intrigues you or if you have a cover artist who you think would be perfect.

I'd need at least the ebook cover (and if we could work out a paperback cover suitable for CreateSpace, that would be great, too).

Writers' Cafe / October KENP Rate - Now that's disappointing
« on: November 16, 2015, 08:22:59 am »
Well, looks like they really lowered the rate for October.
By my calculations, it is around 0.004809 per page.

I was really hoping it would stay at a minimum of 0.005 per page.

At this rate, by early next year, the page rate will be next to nothing, based on this trend:
Aug: 0.0057
Sep: 0.00507
Oct: 0.004809, that's $2.40 for 500 pages

So, just looking at trends (my trend is a little "expedited" but you get the idea):
Nov: 0.00408, or $2.04 for 500 pages
Dec: 0.0038, or $1.90 for 500 pages
Jan: 0.00308, or $1.54 for 500 pages
Mar: 0.0028, or $1.40 for 500 pages
Apr: 0.00208, or $1.04 for 500 pages read
May: 0.0018, or $0.90 for 500 pages read
Jun: 0.00108, or $0.54 for 500 pages read
Jul: 0.0008, or $0.40 (40 cents) for an entire book read. At that point, it's like, why bother?

Although if the rates continue to drop so much, by July, we could see a trend toward using KDP SELECT for the first book in a series instead of PermaFree because the net effect for the author would be that the book is without net profit.

Oh, wait, but that won't work because people are PAYING to borrow books, so while the author earns nothing, the reader is still paying and won't perceive the book as free (as in PermaFree), so while readers may like borrowing, I can't see why an author would do that rather than going wide and setting the first book in a series as PermaFree.

So, I'm thinking that by next summer, I'll be taking all my books out of KDP Select (again, after just putting them all in) and changing my tactics once again.

We must be flexible, I guess, and willing to change strategies every few months.

Writers' Cafe / Urgent help needed FNAC.COM Site
« on: November 03, 2015, 06:23:21 am »
I hope someone can help me, or that someone here reads French (I think it's French, but I have no idea, really).
Amazon just contacted me and is threatening to throw one of my books out of KDP Select because they found it on the site (here is the link: ).

I didn't put it there and I've contacted Smashwords on the off chance they distributed it there (it's their edition), but I'd really like to know if anyone has dealt with fnac and knows a contact email address or any way to contact them?

Has anyone dealt with this situation (trying to get a book taken down) and know how to get them to remove the book?

Thank you for any assistance. If you even speak/read French and can look at their site to see how to contact them, I'd be grateful. I poked around but just don't understand enough French to figure out how to contact them.


Writers' Cafe / Amazon rewarding trends
« on: October 31, 2015, 06:12:42 pm »
I've read a lot on KBoards and other places where Amazon rewards authors who have good performance or good book selling trends. And that you want a constant rate of sales rather than spikes, such as what you might see from a sale.

Over the last two months, my sales of gradually risen, and I was wondering if anyone actually had any specific numbers or knowledge of this?
I'm not even sure what might be included in some of the ways Amazon might reward "good sellers," other than things like mentioning your books more often for things like "also-boughts" or things like that.

So basically, I was wondering two things:
1) What things does Amazon do if you start selling well?
2) What sort of trend might be necessary for the algorithms to "kick in?" Assuming there are algorithms that kick in, :).

Just curious.
I've had a pretty good Sep and Oct, so I was curious about these things that I thought would never affect me before.
and Happy Halloween!

Writers' Cafe / First BookBub Ad
« on: October 13, 2015, 03:08:13 pm »
I just had to tell someone who understands the importance of this: I just got my first BookBub ad, after YEARS of applying for one! I'm so excited I can hardly stand it.

They accepted the first book in my Archer Family Regency Romances series, so if all goes well, I might get some new fans who will be interested in the other 3 books in the series. Who knows? I might even get some more newsletter subscribers.

Anyway, my plan now (after I finish running around the house and screaming) is to line up some other ads to boost it up and start the free promo the day before with some other promo sites. I'll get to work tomorrow on that--I'm too ditsy right now to do anything other than smile insanely.

And I wanted to thank everyone here on the boards. You folks have been so supportive and helpful to me over the years. You really have no idea.

Writers' Cafe / Book Release - Tip, esp. for newbies
« on: September 10, 2015, 06:52:58 am »
While I'm not a newbie, per se, since I have over 15 books out, I am in the position of a newbie in the sense that I have not found my audience yet and still lack a significant number of newsletter signups, etc.

Used to be I could release a book and earn a couple of thousand without doing anything else. Those days are gone. Now, I have to work for each sale.

So, when I released my most recent book  A Lady in Hiding (The Archer Family Regency Romances Book 2) I used the regular techniques PLUS, I enrolled it in KDP Select and made it available for borrowing.

1) I selected to PRE-Release in order to get the link necessary to get ads lined up for when it went live. I priced the pre-release at $0.99.
2) I lined up a bunch of ads, spread out over the first week of release. I kept the price of $0.99 for the first week to get some sales started and hopefully get within the top 100 of an appropriate category.
3) I made the book available for borrowing.

I never really earned that much from borrows in the past and generally had only used that for boxed sets, figuring if someone wanted to borrow my books, they could get the boxed set, which is the first three books in any series. Then if they liked it, they might buy the remaining books in the series.

Here is what I didn't expect.
I'm getting more borrows than purchases. And given the number of pages read, I'd have to say that most of them are probably finishing the book.

Which leads me to this conclusion and advice:
If you are just starting out and trying to build your audience, readers might be more open to borrowing your book than buying it, even if priced at $0.99. So I would encourage folks to enroll in KDP Select and make their books available for borrowing. You may find more readers that way.

The funny (ha, ha) thing is that right now, my book is still $0.99, and since it is 351 pages, I will make $2 (.0057 * 351) per borrow if the reader finishes. Which they appear to be doing from the page number I'm seeing. So I'm actually doing better during this initial release with the borrows than with the purchases!

Of course that's just a rough estimate as far as how much I earn per book, because we're paid by pages read and really have no idea how many actual books were borrowed. We can only do the math and get an absolute minimum number of borrows with the assumption that the reader gets to the end of the book.

This works for both the reader and me!

Readers unfamiliar with me can get the book "for free" and try it.
I will earn more on that borrow than I will on the initial sale price (at least until next week when I set it to the regular price of $3.25).

Bottom line: I would encourage new authors, or authors who don't have a large readership, to consider enrolling their book in KDP Select and allow borrows, at least for the first 90 day period. You can always remove it after the first 90 days and release it more widely. If you want.

But I'm actually earning more on borrows than I ever earned from all the other outlets combined.

Just a tidbit I thought others might find useful.

Writers' Cafe / Your writing process
« on: August 30, 2015, 08:00:08 am »
I am always fascinated by the various processes writers use and especially those who write quickly since I am trying to do that as well.

How do you organization your production schedule? What I mean specifically is do you work on one project at a time, for example, do you go through editing one book while writing another?

I have always focused on one book from start to finish, but I am thinking this may not be efficient, especially when waiting for edits to come back from an editor.

Maybe I should be overlapping more.

Do others work straight on one thing or overlap?

Or have some other totally cool and unique method?

Sent from my XT1254 using Tapatalk

Writers' Cafe / General Question about Promotions
« on: August 27, 2015, 09:12:24 am »
Kind of a dumb question, but I was wondering--regarding promotions--what your thoughts are on the use of various promotion venues.


1) Do you use the same promotion venues, e.g. ENT, Booksends, whatever, for every new book?   Or do you try to "spread ads around" and not always use the same venues when you have a new book coming out?

2) Do you use the same promotion venues for sales, e.g. Free book, when you are promoting existing books?

I keep thinking that I should not use the same venues for repeated "Free book" periods for the same book, on the assumption that you would mostly be going to the same audience time and time again. I don't know if that is valid or not. but after a while, it is hard to find venues you haven't used before for the same book, if you know what I mean. I just keep thinking about the law of diminishing returns...

(My last free promo did okay as far as giving away copes, but the tail wasn't there nor were the sales of my other books high enough to pay back the cost of the promo. But I'm not giving up. Just trying to use my promo dollars in the smartest way possible.)

Thanks for any advice, opinions, theories, or tips.

Writers' Cafe / Really stupid question
« on: August 19, 2015, 09:16:43 am »
I ought to know the answer to this, but it escapes me at the moment.

I'd like to promote the heck out of my next book during its release week, but most promo sites want the link to the book. I thought that just setting it up in KDP without actually publishing would give you the ASIN, which you can think create a link from. This appears not to be the case (I could have sworn it did that in the past).

Does anyone have an answer as to how to get promos set up to start the day of release, without actually releasing the book in KDP?

(Like I said, I ought to know the answer to this, but my mind is blank right now.)

Writers' Cafe / Blurb Help, please, for a trad Regency Romance
« on: August 07, 2015, 07:01:06 am »
Hi all!
Hope everyone is having a fun and productive summer.

In my efforts to be proactive (and make fewer mistakes, LOL) I'm hoping folks will be willing to lend their eyes and thoughts to a little blurb I am working on for a Regency Romance (traditional/sweet) that I have slated to be released in late September.

It is a short blurb, so hopefully it won't be too much work or make anyone barf from the pain of reading it. :)

Will a 40-year-old mystery bring them together...or keep them apart?

The Archers and the Comstocks have been sworn enemies for over forty years and the feud only grows stronger when Anemone Comstock meets the Earl of Wraysbury, a member of the Archer family. She is determined to ignore him and has no intention of reenacting Romeo and Juliet, a silly play she didn't find romantic in the least. But the earl has other ideas, and they are soon thrown into the midst of an old mystery--and each other's arms.

That's it. (I said it was short.)
Let me know what you think, how it can be improved, etc. I tried to stay away from padding it with details like what the feud is about (Stanley Archer and George Comstock went missing 40 years ago and each family thinks the other is responsible) but if you think I should add that--or anything else--I can do that.

Thanks for any opinions, hints, advice, sneers, or expressions of dismay and disgust. Etc.

Several Regency romances and Regency mysteries by Amy Corwin are on sale from July 30 through August 6, 2015 for $0.99!
Some of these books have never been placed on sale at a reduced price before. So if you are searching for a fun beach read or want to try something new, why not take a look?

$0.99 Sale Books

Books offered at the $0.99 price include the following:

Happy Reading!

Writers' Cafe / Mistakes aren't always fatal in promos
« on: June 03, 2015, 07:03:23 am »
I'm torn about posting this, but maybe someone will profit from my mistakes/theories. Sorry that it is so long. I wanted to explain my reasoning and what happened.

So, I have several books published, both traditional and indie. Back in 2011, I started Indie publishing and initially did better than I expected until a publisher released a slew of similar books (around 50) in Aug/Sep at $.99 from a really famous writer and basically, my sales when flat. I tried everything I could since then to recover, ranging from making the first book free, making the first book $.99, promotions, freebies, etc. All mostly unsuccessfully. I already had a newsletter, but never got more than 40 or so subscribers over all those years.

But, I could always rely on new books netting me a profit (after editing/cover, etc costs) of $2,000 or so, so I was happy enough with that to settle into a groove.

UNTIL THIS YEAR. This year, new releases didn't sell at ALL. In fact, I'm in the hole. Deep. With no profit yet this year and we're in the 6th month.

What to do?
So, a kind author on this board told me to try FREE for the first book. Again. I had my doubts about this strategy because the first book was free before with no help to other books or my newsletter. No help with getting reviews, either.

I considered the following:
  • Older books don't tend to do well
  • FREE means loss of revenue (and I'm already suffering from loss of income due to low sales of my latest book)
  • FREE is not good for a book's rankings after it isn't free any longer
  • I've never had any success with a FREE book leading to other sales (tried it back in 2011/2012 to no avail

I *do* wish that I had decided to do $.99 instead of FREE, given what is happening. And if I do this again, I will probably do $.99, BUT, the problem is that what is happening may not happen if the book is $.99 instead of FREE.

So what is happening?
Well, a series of mistakes that didn't turn out so bad.

Here's the scenario. Learn from it what you can. I can't explain anything. I'm totally confused.
  • I decided to make the book free in May. So I sent a request to BookBub, saying anytime in May would be fine. They REJECTED me.
  • So I moved on to eReader News Today with a suggested date of May 21. I didn't hear back from them.
  • So, for a bunch of reasons, I set up promos with other sites, both paid and free, that spanned May 28 through June 2. These included:

5/28 - Fussy Librarian
5/29 - Indie Book of the Day
5/30 - Digital Book Today, Freebooksy, Author AD Network
5/31 - Book Gorilla, Awesome Gang
6/1   - eBook Impresario, Bargain eBook Hunter, PixieScroll
6/2  - FreeBook Service

Then I got an email from ENT. Apparently, the first email didn't arrive in my inbox. So now I also had ENT scheduled for 5/21. An oddball date, but there you are.
Then, as if that oddball date wasn't bad enough, I was worried about making my book FREE since I had to do that with price matching, so I started the process on May 11 and DARN if it didn't go free on May 11.

I thought, well, that's just my luck all over. Or my incompetence with things like this.

What Happened?

May 11-21 - No advertising - 825 downloads
May 21 - ENT - 1,468 more downloads and # 88 FREE in Kindle Store (# 2 in my category)
                        Total downloads at this point: 2,293
May 22-28 - No advertising - 1,499 more downloads (stayed at #2 in British Detectives)
                         Total downloads at this point:3,792
May 28 - Fussy Librarian - 256 more downloads (#3 in British Detectives)
May 29 - Indie Book of the day - 93 more downloads (#4 in British Detectives)
May 30 - Digital Book Today, Freebooksy, Author AD Network - 1,615 more downloads (#2 in British Detectives)
                         Total downloads at this point:5,756
                          And 3 people signed up for my newsletter
May 31 - Book Gorilla, Awesome Gang - 1,444 downloads (#2 in British Detectives)
                         Total downloads at this point:7,200
                          And 3 more people signed up for my newsletter
                          And I got 4 more reviews (5 and 4 star)
June 1 - eBook Impresario, Bargain eBook Hunter, Pixiescroll - 1,226 downloads (#2 in British Detectives)
June 2 - Freebook Service - 20,862 downloads
                          Total downloads at this point: 29,288
                           #1 in British Detectives
                       #5 FREE in Kindle Store

Today - June 3 - No advertising and it sits at:
                           #1 in British Detectives
                           #3 FREE in Kindle Store

All of this cost a little over $420.
There has been no significant movement of my other books. So I'm deeper in the hole by $420.

I did get a few new newsletter subscribers and a few new reviews. Which is good. But $420 is a lot to pay for a handful of newsletter subscribers and a few new reviews, even if they were nice reviews.

I can't explain what happened yesterday and why the book suddenly took off. I don't think it was the advertiser, which was a last minute addition. I *think* the Amazon algorithms kicked in, probably because of the "stretched out" promo schedule which went from May 21 to June 2 by accident.

Although this is interesting, given my past experience when the book was free, I don't expect it to lead to more sales and let me recoup the money spent on the promo or let me recoup my losses on the other book I released this year. Maybe I'm just pessimistic.

I plan on leaving the book as FREE as long as there are lots of downloads and it has any kind of decent ranking.

Then, I'll set it to $.99 and run another big promo to get the BOUGHT (versus the FREE) ranking back up, because being FREE causes a huge rank problem when you set it back.

Finally, I'll set it back to the normal price.

Why not leave it FREE? Because that never worked for me. When it was FREE before, after the initial download frenzy, it drifted down to just a few copies a day. Setting it to a normal price continued to sell a few copies a day, with the added advantage of getting paid for my work. Since the results were the same, I kind of think getting paid for my work is nice. :)

That's it.

I hope this helps someone. Or gives someone ideas for their own promotional efforts.

Or that someone can explain what the heck happened yesterday that sent my book screaming to a slot near the top of the FREE list.

Writers' Cafe / How long do you allow for Free price change?
« on: April 23, 2015, 10:31:15 am »
For authors out there who have recently set their books to permafree, how long did that take?

I have a book I'd like to set to free by a certain date, and I'm trying to figure out when I need to set the price on Smashwords and other locations to have the Amazon bots find it and set the price to free for me.

Hope that makes sense. I know it will be variable, so I'm just looking for a rough estimate. My initial thought is to give it at least a week, if not two weeks to price match.

Thanks for any thoughts or experiences.

The Book Bazaar / New Regency Mystery - Honeymoon with Death
« on: February 13, 2015, 11:26:14 am »
New Regency Mystery
Honeymoon with Death

On their honeymoon trip through Europe, Prudence and Knighton Gaunt take a brief excursion to see the triple falls on the river Velino on their way to Rome, little knowing the chain of events this will precipitate.

The couple sends their own carriage and servants on to Rome to reserve rooms and joins a small group of travelers in a hired coach. Unfortunately, before the group reaches the triple cascade, their carriage breaks down on a remote road. A band of ruffians ambushes them, and their only safety seems to lie in a ramshackle, old inn reputed to be haunted.

The party of travelers spends one night only to discover one of their group dead the next morning. The body lies in a ravine near the area where they were attacked, casting suspicion on the bandits.

But why had the passenger returned to such a dangerous spot in the middle of the night, and why was the victim wearing another traveler’s cloak?

As Knighton and Pru investigate, they discover the other travelers were not all the strangers they seemed to be. Mistaken identity, revenge, envy, and frustrated love vie as motives, and Knighton is pushed to desperation when Pru disappears as well. He must use every ounce of logic and intelligence to find her—and identify the killer--before there is another death on the road to Rome.

Fire Talk / Blank Pages in Books
« on: January 18, 2015, 12:27:19 pm »
I did a search of this topic and found some old threads, but none of the suggestions helped me. Here is the issue:
I bought several books yesterday on my Kindle Fire. When I went to read them, I would find random pages completely blank. If I touched the screen as if asking for a word definition, it would pop up a definition, so the text is there, it is just invisible.

this happened with multiple books, all downloaded yesterday. Which makes me think there was an issue on yesterday of some kind. Or it may be an issue with my Fire that just started yesterday. I haven't tried to purchase/download any more books on my Fire today (I did get one on my Paperwhite, though).

Here is what I know/tried. I am looking for a solution or solutions.
  • I checked the books on my Paperwhite and the books were fine, no blank pages. So this is just a problem on my Kindle Fire.
  • On my Kindle fire, I deleted the book and downloaded it again. Did not help.
  • I tried changing the font, font size, background color, and line spacing individually (one thing at a time). Did not help.
  • I think I tried changing the orientation (but I can't remember perfectly since I tried so many things last night). It did not help.

I don't believe this is a problem with the book(s) themselves. I believe it is one of the following:
1) A problem with the Fire. (My husband has complained of similar things in the past and only has a Fire - no other device - and those books with random blank pages remain at least partially unreadable for him. Sadly, I initially thought it was just a "user issue." I see now it is not.)
2) A problem with the download process and Fires.

My gut feeling is that there is an issue with the Fire since I see others reporting the same thing (and my husband has had the same thing) and this issue does NOT seem to affect other devices/reading apps which tells me it is not actually the book itself, although it may be the way the Fire handles the download process. Or handles the book files themselves.

I wonder if tablets ever experience the same issue? If not, it might be an argument for moving away from the Fire to a different type of tablet platform. Just saying...why live with the frustration?

Thoughts? Solutions? Whatever?

Writers' Cafe / New Pseudonym - pros and cons - opinions?
« on: July 25, 2014, 08:37:52 am »
I'm getting ready to release a new book in a genre that is different from my previous books.

In the past, my books have generally been: Regency (historical) romance and/or mystery, contemporary mystery (with a bit of romance), or paranormal romance/suspense.

The book I'm getting ready to release is horror, although I suppose you could consider it as paranormal suspense.

I've been thinking about using a different pseudonym for the horror book as kind of a "fresh start". In fact, what I'm actually considering is, for once, NOT using a pseudonym at all.

What stops me is the thought of having to set up additional webpages, author pages, etc, for another name.

I know most of the really well-known, established writers use different pseudonyms for different genres. I can see the appeal of that for readers, as even if they know all the pen names for an author, they know, for example, that if they look for books by "Jack Kilbourne" (I don't know the spelling) they are a specific kind, versus books by "JA Konrath" (again, I think I may be misspelling that, so please forgive me). In other words, it helps readers find the specific KINDS of books by an author that they like. Someone who likes Konrath's mysteries may not like the more gruesome horror of his horror books written under the Kilbourne name, so they can just do searches for Konrath.

I've personally searched for "Barbara Michaels" as opposed to books she's written under other names, because her "Michaels" books are the ones I like. I'm not interested in the others. It makes figuring out the KIND of book a lot easier.

So.....I'm interested in what others have done and which way they've gone.
I have already published two books with paranormal elements (Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Romance/Paranormal Suspense - whatever you want to call them) so there is a bit of similarity there. And I frequently wonder if I'd have done better to publish those under a different pseudonym...

Let me know what you think...

Writers' Cafe / Anyone want to be a Beta Reader?
« on: November 15, 2013, 11:32:05 am »
Dying to get some free reading material?
Well, I'm dying to find some Beta readers who are willing to read and give me feedback on manuscript(s). :)
I write in the following categories:
  • Contemporary (mostly cozy) mysteries
    Paranormal romances
    Regency mysteries
    Horror/Paranormal Suspense

Right now, I find myself in need of a beta reader for a contemporary (cozy) mystery set in North Carolina. You don't have to read all the kinds of books listed--I only listed them because during the next year, I'll have manuscripts in each of those genres that will need a beta reader.

What is a beta reader?
A really nice person who is willing to read a manuscript, warts and all, and willing to tell the author what he or she thinks about it. These are "pre-publication" manuscripts so there will be mistakes in them. (I wish there weren't any mistakes in them, but I'd be shocked if they were perfect.)

If this sounds interesting to you and you're willing to do it, please leave me a message and let me know.
I'd be grateful and you'd be a hero. :)

Writers' Cafe / ARGH! Series Number Conundrum
« on: August 14, 2013, 08:19:45 am »
I'm having a mental breakdown so maybe some of you folks who write series can help.

You see, I had my series bifurcate on me. Now I don't know what to do about the book numbers in the series. And there is a possibility of other branches in the series bifurcating, too.

I'm leaning toward "Choice C" at the end of this dissertation. But I'd like to know what others think (both readers and writers).

Concept: I started a series of historical mysteries, with a detective agency as the central link. I didn't want to get "stuck" with a single detective for fear I'd get tired of him (or her) and also because I like the option of having a very minor/mild romance subplot. It is more flexible to have new detectives as it allows me more scope, variety and the possibility of a new romance.

The Vital Principle is the first book in the series. It takes place in 1819.
A Rose Before Dying is the second one. It takes place in 1821 and has a different detective.
A third one (1/2 done) is called The Illusion of Desire. It takes place in 1821 and has another, different detective.

Then, because of editor comments (e.g. don't rush the romance) when I wrote the first one, the hero and heroine don't "get together" at the end in The Vital Principle. I left it "open" in that sense.

Now, readers have asked for another book to follow up on The Vital Principle because they want to see more of the hero and they want the mild romance to flourish.

So I wrote The Dead Man's View. But now I don't know what "series number" to use!
Technically, it follows immediately after The Vital Principle (circa 1819), so it should be "2". And because of further editor and reader requests, I also have planned a third one, A Honeymoon with Death (circa 1820), which immediately follows The Dead Man's View (circa 1819).

CHOICE A)   Republish A Rose Before Dying as number 3 in the series. PROBLEM: I'll have to push it out again when I publish A Honeymoon with Death, and potentially keep pushing it out if folks want more of the first detective.

CHOICE B)   Republish A Rose Before Dying as number 4 in the series. PROBLEM: It will leave a gaping hole in the numbering until I finish and get A Honeymoon with Death published. And I may have to push it out again later if people want me to write more of the first specific detective.

CHOICE C)   Leave A Rose Before Dying as number 2 in the series, making The Illusion of Desire number 3, etc, as originally planned. Then use number 1.1 for The Dead Man's View and 1.2 for A Honeymoon with Death, and so on. That gives me potentially 9 more book numbers for that specific detective.

That seems best to me.

The reason I'm leaning toward the 1.1 numbering scheme is that the detective I'm writing now in The Illusion of Desire is interesting at least to me (a disabled war vet from the Napoleonic war) and I can see folks asking for more of him. Using the "dot-number" means that at any point in the series, if a detective "catches on" I can write more of that specific one, e.g. 3.1 for a "sequel" to The Illusion of Desire, meaning that same detective.

I just don't know if that sort of thing is acceptable to readers.
These are all full-length novels, so 1.1 would be used for a full-length novel.

Any ideas/opinions are appreciated.

Writers' Cafe / Pseudonyms - how many do you use?
« on: July 20, 2013, 09:01:23 am »
I'm just curious about other author's use of pseudonyms. I've always just used one but I know other authors have used multiple pseudonyms, generally when they write in different categories/genres.

I find it really hard to keep track of and manage one pseudonym, so I shied away from using multiple, but now I'm have second thoughts. In fact, I sort of wish I had split off my Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Romances with a pseudonym to separate them from the historical mysteries/Regencies that I also write.

My initial thought was that readers are astute and can figure out based on the blurb and genre if they want to read a book or not. That readers didn't really need an author to use different pseudonyms for different genres, i.e. that readers could figure it out.

But lately, I'm thinking that while readers can figure it out, it may be easier on them if you use different pseudonyms for different genres as a "shorthand" way to know what they are getting. A prime example is Barbara Michaels (light horror) and Elizabeth Peters (historical mysteries). It's one author, but if you just want some light horror, you can search for Barbara Michaels, versus having to weed through all the books under one pseudonym for a particular genre you like from a single author.

I based my decision (to a large degree) on Georgette Heyer, who wrote both Regencies and contemporary mysteries under the same name , i.e. Georgette Heyer. She obviously figured that readers could figure it out and select the genre they wanted.

What do you do as an author? What do you prefer as a reader?
Do you prefer it when an author uses one name or multiple?

Writers' Cafe / I've accomplished this!
« on: February 18, 2013, 05:26:07 am »
I hesitated about which forum to put this in, but ultimately decided writers might find it most useful.

How about a thread on what you managed to accomplish today!

Personally, I need something to spur me on some days, and sometimes, I'd just like to be able to say, "Hey, I wrote 2k words today, yippee!"

So I thought, hey, why not a thread where we can all comment on what we've managed to accomplish?
It doesn't have to be "I wrote 100K words today." It can be as simple as "I did the dishes."
Some days, even just changing out of your jammies can be a challenge :) so why not have a place where we can write about what we've managed to do, no matter how trivial?

Chatting with others can inspire us and motivate us, so I hope this becomes a warm place to share and help each other put one foot in front of the other in our journeys. far, I haven't accomplished much today except start this thread, but hey, it's a start!

Happy Writing (or doing whatever you wish)!

The Book Bazaar / Feed your hunger for vampires with: A Fall of Silver
« on: January 27, 2013, 03:51:15 pm »

A Fall of Silver

Their secrets are about to catch up with them.

The only good vampire is a dead vampire: that’s Quicksilver’s philosophy and she sees no reason to change it. In fact, she’s about to kill one of the undead when Kethan Hilliard confronts her, promising peace and redemption for both vampires and humans in exchange for an end to the slaughter.
But Quicksilver knows that’s not going to happen.

Someone is killing humans and vampires, and sweet words aren’t going to end the nightmare.

The events awaken terrible secrets from Quicksilver’s past, and she’s not about to repeat her previous mistakes. This time, she’s going to end the madness and silence the horror, forever.

Not Quite Kindle / Puppy playpen or not?
« on: November 28, 2012, 11:01:00 am »
We're getting a new puppy and I need help thinking through some things. :) I know there are a lot of dog-lovers on the kindle board, so perhaps you can help me.

We're trying to decide if we need to get a pen (or playpen, if you prefer) for the puppy until she gets housebroken and learns "the ropes."

Here is why:
  • Our new puppy is a Jack Russell. Our previous Jack Russell was an adult when we got her so this wasn't such an issue. But this puppy will be small enough to be attractive to hawks if we put her out in the back yard unattended. (We actually wouldn't let our adult JR out without escort, either, for that matter.)
  • Our other dogs (Chesapeake and a lab) are big enough that we can put them out in the fenced back yard during the day and it's not a problem (i.e. hawks aren't interested in a 130lb lab).
  • We have 1 acre fenced in, so the dogs have PLENTY of room to run around. Plus, we let them in and out of the house numerous times during the day because we both work from home.
  • We both, however, work from home. So while I can let the puppy out just about every hour to work on housebreaking, I can't supervise her continually because I'm working (and so is my husband).
  • I've always disliked penning dogs (hence the one acre fenced in yard) but I'm worried because the puppy will be so darn small. It will be easy for her to get into trouble while I'm working and don't notice what she's doing.

What are your thoughts, pros & cons, about a "playpen" for the puppy, at least during the initial few months?

From what I've read about pens, if you give the puppy plenty of toys, a bed, water, and "pee mat", a pen can keep the puppy out of trouble. I plan to let her out about every hour to go outside, but I need to be with her. We live in the country and I wasn't being "cute" when I said hawks (and owls) are a real possibility. There is a pair of Red-Tailed Hawks hanging around our catfish pond out past the fenced-in area (yes, we live in paradise for dogs) and there are Red-shouldered Hawks behind the house as well. They'd think the puppy is a tasty morsel if I let her out without being there, even with the two other big dogs. Not to mention that she's mostly white which is like a big, flashing "eat me" sign.

My husband hates pens but in this case, I'm wondering if this really is a case of "better safe than sorry"?

Do you use pens?
What have your experiences been?

The Book Corner / Medieval or Historical Mysteries Anyone?
« on: October 23, 2012, 05:27:54 am »
Ok, I'll admit it, I've gotten totally hooked on Medieval mysteries. Don't know why, but there you are.
Haven't been able to find Cadfael yet on Kindle (I hope it's in the works, though) and I've gotten all Mel Starr's and a few others.

So now I'm wondering if anyone has any other suggestions for Medieval (or even other historical) mysteries?

(I've also gotten most of Lindsay Davis' Falco, but they are very expensive so I have to space out the purchases. Tried Saylor, but he can be a little "rough" sometimes so I'm a little shy of his books...)

The Book Bazaar / ESCAPING NOTICE, A Regency Romantic Mystery is live!
« on: March 18, 2012, 05:07:02 am »
Escaping Notice, my latest Regency romantic mystery is out and here's a bit about it.

A frog in a teapot, a lost necklace, and a sabotaged boat: incongruencies leading an unlikely hero to investigate a chilling murder in Regency England.

Discarded by his betrothed with a parting sally that “being an earl does not excuse being a bore,” Hugh Castle, the Earl of Monnow, joins his brother on a relaxing cruise, hoping to forget. But a storm capsizes their boat, and despite Hugh’s desperate efforts, he can’t save his brother’s life. Then he finds evidence amongst the wreckage of sabotage and realizes he was never meant to return to dock. Someone intending to murder the earl killed his younger brother, instead. Angered beyond endurance, Hugh travels to London to enlist the aid of the Second Sons Inquiry Agency in finding his brother’s murderer.

Helen Archer attended the Earl of Monnow’s ball in expectation of celebrating his betrothal, but the event seems destined for disaster. She arrives late, the earl makes no announcement, and Helen manages to lose the fabled Peckham necklace her sister reluctantly loaned to her. Unwilling to admit her carelessness to her sister, Helen rashly decides to return to the earl’s estate and retrieve it in secret.

When his aunt threatens to send him to his cruel uncle, the Earl of Monnow, Edward Leigh-Brown decides he’s had enough. He’s going to join the navy and follow in Lord Nelson’s footsteps to become a military hero. But finding his way to London is a lot harder for a young boy than it seems, and he’s soon lost. When he bumps into Miss Helen Archer at an inn, he’s more than happy to accept a ride in her carriage, even if she seems determined to escort him to an inquiry agency to hire someone to locate the family he doesn’t want located.

When the three meet in London at Second Sons, Helen impulsively decide to accompany Hugh to the earl’s home, disguised as servants, to pursue their secret goals. Hugh hopes to uncover a killer, Helen hopes to find her necklace, and Edward just hopes he can find the opportunity to escape again.

But they are soon engulfed in an adventure none of them anticipated, and Hugh must hurry to identify who wants him dead before their deception ends in the death of another innocent.

Fire Talk / Christmas, FIRE, and iBird
« on: December 18, 2011, 06:37:56 pm »
I know I shouldn't have opened it because it's not Christmas yet, but...

I put a Fire on my wish list because I was interested in getting one, but I didn't know anyone actually looked at my list.

So I got this box in the mail Saturday from Amazon and I opened it. Nicely wrapped present and packing slipt with FIRE on it! I just couldn't wait so I went ahead and opened it. It was a Fire! My sister went nuts and bought it for me. And I'm thrilled with it.

In fact, I'm thinking of making a short video of it and posting it on Facebook, because it's got one killer app on it that is destined to cause fights between my husband and me for control of the Fire--the iBird app. Sure, I have it on my Droid, but the screen is so tiny that it's not as useful as it might be. But on the Fire, it totally comes alive and is much more useable. Both my husband and I are birders and this alone really made my day.

I'm going to drag hubby out for the Christmas bird count this year and guess what we'll be bringing along?

I'm so happy...

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