Monday, January 28, 2013

Writer's Dojo... Back & Ready to Geaux!

Leigh here! It's my day to post something Indelibilicious (I made that up. So?), but my good Indelible writer-friend Ali Cross OUT-COOLED me, so I'm turning the spotlight on her...

Take it away, Ali~

The Writer's Dojo is returning to its roots and invites you to join in on the fun! 

When I first started the writer's dojo in 2008, it was a way to keep the glory of National Novel Writing Month alive all year long. I loved the camaraderie and support I received during the month of November and desired that same feeling of community every month of the year, in every aspect of writing--not just the drafting.

Beginning February 1st, 2013, the writer's dojo returns to its roots and ushers in a new age of ninjawesomeness. Each month we will open three training rooms at the writer's dojo website. A room for drafters (Writing Month, aka WriMo), a room for revisers (Revising Month, aka ReMo) and a room for those querying (Querying Month, aka QuMo).

We invite you to set your own goals, whether it's to write a thousand words a day, revise ten pages a week, or submit twenty queries in a month, and register your goal in the appropriate training room.

Every Monday we'll post the leaderboard for the previous week, and at the end of each month those who met their goal will be able to post the coveted Writing Ninja Warrior badge on their blog or website.

To help you reach your goals, we have a number of ways to support you:

CHATS: At the dojo every Thursday at 4:00 p.m. Eastern time.

TWITTER: Anytime, day or night, at #writingninja.

GOOGLE+: Join our community for random write-ins and sprints.

NEWSLETTER: Subscribe to our Ninja News and once a month you'll receive an email with an encouraging note and a list of the top performers for the previous month. There will also be opportunities for giveaways, starting with February's newsletter!

We hope to see you at the dojo as you reach for--and achieve--your goals!

Friday, January 25, 2013


I don't normally make them. We all know we promise ourselves to do something and then we don't follow through. But this year, I broke my own resolution NOT to make a resolution. It started with the stress and the insomnia over the holidays with the new book release. Nothing with The Haunting Season  has been easy. Everything that could go wrong seems to have gone wrong. I kept thinking about all those things and the numbers and ranks and marketing strategies. I ran a million pieces of advice through my head. I've tried to do everything right by my books — I try to achieve perfection. I stress over covers and editing and beta readers. I stress over marketing and blogs, social media, ads. I pour over books on writing and improving my craft. I have my close friend and crit partner, Leslie Tentler, on speed dial to talk me off the ledge countless times during my first drafts. Why? Because I somehow think that a first draft has to be... good. No, I think they've got to be pretty darn good. Better than just missing scenes and typos and chunks of text I'll cut later.
It was 4 in the morning, January 1 when I couldn't sleep anymore and got up. I did a little reading on the iPad. Everything raced through my head at once  - the marketing, the drafts, social media - the number of books on my brain. Then, while thinking of all these things WHILE still reading a book on writing, I stumbled across this written across the screen:
‎"Don't get it right, get it written!" ~James Thurber
All thoughts stopped. I stared at that one sentence and sighed. I took a deep breath. And for the first time in months I felt tension slip away. The answer to everything writing related came to me then and there.
There's no better advice for completing a first draft out there. None. And so, that's my New Year's resolution. In the end, it's always the story that matters. Not the extra mile I've been doing with marketing. Not the extra time spent finding cute things to tweet or post on FB. To write well, a writer needs to have passion. I can't find passion if my mind isn't focused on one thing at a time. I need time to write horrible first drafts and the time to polish them into something amazing.
To gear up, I bought myself a present. It's a large 15 oz mug that I'll use every day. It'll sit on my desk and remind me of what I'm there to do. I could have gone with several others, like these:
Screen Shot 2013-01-02 at 4.20.55 PM
Hilarious. And true. And something to make me think about FB and Twitter, which would lead to checking them both.
Or this...
    Screen Shot 2013-01-02 at 4.21.14 PMWhich is flattery, but nothing more.
Or...Screen Shot 2013-01-02 at 4.21.37 PM
It's true, but it's hardly inspiration for me to put black on white. Besides, no one in my house would listen. They'd barely listen to this:
Screen Shot 2013-01-02 at 4.21.50 PM
Then, there's this one. I loved this:
Screen Shot 2013-01-02 at 4.21.27 PMI almost bought it right then and there. It's awesome. Totally accurate.
But then, I saw this:
Screen Shot 2013-01-02 at 4.22.09 PM
And I knew it was perfect.  As writers, we learn to replace many words with one well-chosen word. One word often makes the biggest impact.
This mug puts my mind where it needs to be - back to basics. And for me, that's

Just. Write.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

LCCNs and Why You Want One

On the title page of books published traditionally, you will see something like this-

Library of Congress Control Number: 2012932337
Hogan, Cindy M.
Protected/Cindy M. Hogan.-1st ed.
p. cm.
Summary: When terrorists find Christy, she must enter the Witness Protection Program and become someone totally new while abandoning everything she has ever known.

You want this in your book, too and you can! Why do you want it? It is the catalog control number used for your book in the Library of Congress. Cool, huh!

PCN is a preassigned control number for print books only. The book must also be printed in the US and you must get the number before it is printed for the first time.

What is it exactly?

A Library of Congress catalog control number is a unique identification number that the Library of Congress assigns to the catalog record created for each book in its cataloged collections. Librarians use it to locate a specific Library of Congress catalog record in the national databases and to order catalog cards from the Library of Congress or from commercial suppliers. 

Why do you want one?

The purpose of the Preassigned Control Number (PCN) program is to enable the Library of Congress to assign control numbers in advance of publication to those titles that may be added to the Library's collections. The publisher prints the control number in the book and thereby facilitates cataloging and other book processing activities. The PCN links the book to any record which the Library of Congress, other libraries, bibliographic utilitites, or book vendors may create.

Are you eligible?

Only U.S. book publishers are eligible to participate in the PCN program. These publishers must list a U.S. place of publication on the title page or copyright page of their books and maintain an editorial office in the U.S. capable of answering substantive bibliographic questions.
When you get a PCN, you are assigned a particular person to take care of your needs. Find yours under Liaisons
How to get yours
It is a two-step process.
First you must complete an application to participate here.
 **Note-You must be a publisher to get this number. You are the publisher of your book if you are an indie publisher. You should get a license (doing business as license) and make it official.
Next, when the application has been approved, you, as the publisher, will be sent an account number and password. Then you can log-in and fill out the Preassigned Control Number Application Form to get your number.
Then you print it on the title page of your book.
Easy Peasy! Go get yours today! Don't let your title page be bare.
Are you convinced? Are you going to get a PCN for your awesome book?

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Being An Author Opens Doors You Can't Imagine


Meeting others. In my desire to do my best to write that one novel that will expose me to a larger audience I searched around my city for a writers group. I found a few and I joined them all. Maryland Writers Association, The Romance Writers (I just hang out a few of their meetings), The Columbia writers group (I found them off of , the Black Writer’s Guild, Mid-Atlantic Book Publishers, and Independent Book Publishers Association, Critique Circle, and All of which I joined not to meet people but to learn about writing. But throughout the years I’ve met tons of amazing and best-selling authors who’ve further inspired the best from me.

Speaking Platforms. Did you know you don’t have to be a bestselling author to get speaking gigs? Well you don’t. Matter of fact, sometimes you don’t necessarily even have to have anything published. You can support others to becoming published and be able to speak about this. I never knew this before I started speaking and touring for my books. I have met people who have spoken at events (maybe for free or even sometimes paid) that support the art of writing by being a long standing board member of writerly organizations, being a freelance editor who edit books of other authors, or someone that organizes and promotes authors and such. Sometimes just starting to write something and exposing yourself to people in the business gains you knowledge that you can share on the speaking circuit.

Gives you something to talk about. I’ve met quite a few writers that have been writing their novel for over 5yrs or even more. They sometimes admit that they may never finish but love to just write. They often share their challenges with their writing and their triumphs and from one author to another I totally understand that writing is like putting together a puzzle. Some people like to finish it, others like to widdle at it. But in both cases, it is pleasurable and freeing.

Can Support Other Goals. There are many people in my day time career and some of my peers that love their career areas in medicine, engineering and social services. They’ve found it a necessity to have a published work to support their speaking or to give to peers on their subject matter. Many of them don’t like to write. But they’ve worked with writing coaches to help them write books, pamphlets, support documents and white papers to share. Sometimes this has turned into a profitable venture for them. Believe it or not, many of these folks self-publish their materials and make a pretty penny on speaking and selling these items to their guest.


With all I’ve shared about writing and being an author, what has just putting pen to paper have exposed you to? Or grown in you? Are you a Blogger who has a following or a writer who’ve met great friends in your journey or a student who wrote a story that moved your class. Please share.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Indelibles Samplers for Your Reading Pleasure

Love a good love story?
Want to get lost in a great fantasy read or historical romp?
Enjoy mindbending futuristic tales?  

We have a sampler for you...

Four amazing samplers! FREE!

Best-selling books. Best-selling authors.

Contemporary - Science-fiction - Historical - Fantasy

But this isn’t all about us. 
This is about you, the reader, finding books you love to read.

Just click on the pictures for your free download!

                                 To celebrate the release of the samplers,
we're giving away free books!

Four winners will win the ebook of their choice from any sampler.

1. Download your FREE samplers today and enjoy the experience.
2. Fill out the rafflecopter form for a chance to win!
3. If the book is already free, you'll receive the second book in the series!                               

Enter now!!!

Thanks! And enjoy!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Starting out Indie

(photo source)

I get emails from a few friends who were like me, querying for years with a lot of bites from agents, but no contract. They see my books hit the best seller lists and stellar reviews on Amazon and want to know "How does self-publishing work?"

I can't say that I recommend self-publishing for everyone, but the longer I've gone Indie, the more I don't know if I could ever go back. But after a year of doing this gig, there are some definite things I wish I knew when I started.

1.) Your book needs an editor. You may have awesome grammar skills and have had eight critique partners read your masterpiece, but another set of eyes that is attached to it never hurts. An editor doesn't have to cost an arm and a leg, you can pay anything from $100-$1000 depending on the editor and if you need a lot of editing or just some proofreading.

2.) A kick butt cover can sell your books. When looking for covers for my next New Adult book, I thought of doing it on my own, but I don't have the eye that the professionals do.  I hired the awesomesauce Steven Novak for my alien series and I'm using Mae I Design for my New Adult (since she has the market cornered on "panty dropping" covers). A cover can cost you anything from $50-$1500, depending if you also want to do print and if you are using custom photography, etc.

3.) Paying for a blog tour is worth every penny. I did do my own blog tour for How to Date an Alien and My Paper Heart, the problem? I didn't know that many bloggers who would take the book on, some didn't post on the day they were supposed to, etc. I finally decided to use blog tour organizer for my last alien book and she brought me thirty people that hadn't read my books who were interested in participating. It opened my book up to a new audience and now I can have those contacts for future book reviewing. There are many blog tours out there and you can go for as little as $30 for a few stops or even up to $300 for massive like multiple month tours with multiple stops.

4.)  Learn to format properly or find someone to format it. I learned to format my first ebooks and the paperback process took me almost a whole day to figure out. There are services that will do it reasonably, but you have to figure out what software is available and if you just can't get the right formatting to upload your word doc or epub file, then maybe it's time to hire someone. These can costs anywhere from a bout $20-$50.

5.) Stop reading reviews. It's tempting and there will be some that will gush for your books, but the ones that hate it will bring you to tears for no reason. I remember reading one for My Paper Heart that attacked me as an author and said they literally wanted to slap me. I wanted to cry, wanted to respond to the reviewer, but I held back, because nothing good ever comes from responding to a reviewer that writes something negative (as we've seen the stories).

6.) You wont be an overnight success. Yes, there are some Indie authors that do make those tremendous overnight successes, but then there are those that have a slow build up and rock it (M. Leighon had 14 books out before she made the NY Times best seller list). If your books don't sell, don't give up, just keep writing and keep on trucking.

Magan Vernon is a Young Adult and New Adult writer who lives with her family in the insurance capital of the world. She is in a very serious, fake relationship with Adam Lambert and constantly asks her husband to wear guyliner. He still refuses. She also believes her husband is secretly an alien, disguised as a southern gentleman. You can find her online at Or check out her awesome book covers and purchase her books at all online retailers including Amazon and Barnes and Noble

Monday, January 14, 2013

New York Times Best Seller: Addison Moore

It is a truth universally acknowledged that every Indie strives for something greater. We all strive to make a living on writing, we all strive to be like our heroes before us:  Stephen King, Charlotte Bronte, etc.

And one of our own, Addison Moore, has proved that an Indie can go for greater and make it.

You see that? Next to that number 10 is Addison Moore and that number 10 is for the New York Times Best Seller list.

I've always looked up to Addison. She has kids, writes full-time, and continues to put out amazing books that keep rising up the Amazon best seller charts. She took a risk and went away from her normal paranormal YA and wrote a contemporary love story. A risk that got her to the New York Times best seller.

All of us Indelibles want to say congratulations to Addison and wish her well with her continued success. She is truly an inspiration to us all.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Make Me Care

In WRITING THE BREAKOUT NOVEL by Donald Maass (Love all of his craft books. Seriously. Go read them!), he says that you shouldn’t necessarily write what you know, but what you care about. “If you don’t know, you’ll find out. But if you don’t care, why should anyone else?” (3).

I’m the type of person who doesn’t like to “quit” anything—especially books. I’ll hang in there until the end, even if I’m struggling to keep the pages turning.  Right now, though, I have about 75 books in my “To Be Read” pile—including on my Kindle. Between the day job and writing, I only have time to read 35-50 books a year (on average). (Yes. I keep track of the titles. I’m OCD like that.) 

I never understood why people would abandon books before the end—but I’m beginning to see the appeal. Right now I just don’t have the time to invest in a book that doesn’t capture me from the first few chapters.

Obviously, what captures one person might not necessarily capture the next—I realize this is totally subjective. I also realize that, by “not hanging in there,” I might miss out on some real gems. Still….

In perusing the list of titles I read last year, I easily remember which books I struggled to get through and the ones where the pages practically turned themselves.

A few of the ones I struggled with were well-plotted and well-written, but I wasn’t necessarily rushing back to the Kindle (or shelf) to pick them up. On the flip side, I recently finished a story that could have been edited better, but had me completely sucked in—and I mean “bathwater running cold” sucked in.

The difference?

I cared.

I cared about the characters and what happened to them.

Again, this concept is highly subjective, because the things I care about you might not care about, and that’s okay. But, as writers, this is something that should always be at the forefront in our minds—it’s something I continue to work on.

Because if I don’t care, why should I expect my readers to care?


Katie Klein is a diehard romantic with a penchant for protagonists who kick butt. Her YA contemporary romance, Cross My Heart, is an Amazon Teen Top 100 Bestseller and was a 2011 Goodreads Choice Awards Nominee for Best YA Fiction.

She’s bouncing between three books right now—one that’s turning its own pages, and two she’s trying *so hard* not to give up on. No, it’s not your book, so don’t worry.  :)

You can find her on the web at,, or!/katiekleinbooks.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Indie Life - Join us!

Starting today, the Indelibles will be hosting a monthly feature called INDIE LIFE. Modeled after Alex Cavanaugh's awesome Insecure Writer's Group, this will be a chance for indie authors to post about indie life, find each other, offer support, encouragement, news, helpful hints, and anything else that makes life as an indie author a little easier.

What is Indie Life?
How: Sign up on the Linky at the bottom of this page
When: Post on the second Wednesday of the month (starting TODAY 1/9/2013)
What: Write anything indie related: something that will inspire or help a fellow indie; something that celebrates a release or a milestone; something that talks about the ups and downs, joys and heartaches of Being Indie.
Grab: The banner above to include in your posts!

Because being Indie doesn't have to mean going it alone.

Laura Pauling brings us her first Indie Life post.

With a new year comes the wave of blog posts about resolutions and writing goals. I enjoy reading them. I love seeing what my friends and blogging pals are up to. What insight they have in how to balance their writing and their families.

I don’t love writing resolution posts myself, so I jotted down some confessions. Most erred on the side of humorous and flimsy. But one mentioned how I miss the good ole days of blogging.

Three times a week, I blogged. Three times a week, I read a lot of posts and commented on most of them. But I didn’t mind it. In a phase of writing where I was querying and querying and querying, publishing to my blog and gaining readers brought a feeling of accomplishment.

Over the past year, each month, my Google reader diminished in posts. More writers were taking extended breaks. Eventually, I joined the crowd and dropped to blogging once a week.

But I was writing more, and I was publishing.

Even though I miss those days, I don’t want to go back. I still love keeping up with my friends and meeting new ones, but even more? I love seeing the progress my friends are making.

Some are signing with agents and getting book deals. Some are just jumping into the querying pool or signing with small presses. Others are self-publishing and hitting the best seller lists. More and more writers are making strides with their careers and finding success.

I couldn’t be more proud. I love it.

So yes, I miss the good ole days of blogging, but I love this day and age of blogging even more. Here’s to another fantastic year even with all the highs and the lows that a creative life brings.


NOTE: if you previously signed up, but your name is not on the list - please sign up again! We had a linky catastrophe that deleted everyone's names. Thanks for your understanding!

Copy this linky code to include the linky in your Indie Life posts!
<script type="text/javascript" src="" ></script>

Friday, January 4, 2013


One to two times a month we'll be posting the latest Indelibles news. Check out these new releases by our authors!

Now available in a single volume, G. P. Ching's bestselling Soulkeepers Series, books 1-3, will sweep you away on an adventure of good vs. evil, with plot twists that will keep you guessing until the very last page. Amazon

In the year 2050, a secret government study nicknamed Operation Source Code injects eight volunteers with a retrovirus. The goal? To abate the energy crisis by reprogramming human DNA to power personal electronic devices. The experiment works but with disastrous consequences. Seventeen years later, Lydia Troyer is far from concerned with the energy crisis. Growing up in the isolated community of Hemlock Hollow, life hasn't changed much since 1698 when her Amish ancestors came to America. She milks her cow by hand, makes fresh bread every morning, and hopes to be courted by Jeremiah, the boy who's been her best friend since she could walk. But when Lydia's father has a stroke and is taken to the outside world for medical treatment, Lydia and Jeremiah leave home to visit him. An ordinary light switch thrusts Lydia into a new world where energy is a coveted commodity and her own personal history makes her the most sought-after weapon on the planet.

Be careful what you let in… Siler House has stood silent beneath Savannah’s moss-draped oaks for decades. Notoriously haunted, it has remained empty until college-bound Jess Perry and three of her peers gather to take part in a month-long study on the paranormal. Jess, who talks to ghosts, quickly bonds with her fellow test subjects. One is a girl possessed. Another just wants to forget. The third is a guy who really knows how to turn up the August heat, not to mention Jess’s heart rate…when he’s not resurrecting the dead. The study soon turns into something far more sinister when they discover that Siler House and the dark forces within are determined to keep them forever. In order to escape, Jess and the others will have to open themselves up to the true horror of Siler House and channel the very evil that has welcomed them all. Amazon

When your mind is a weapon, freedom comes at a price. Four months have passed since Kira left home to join Julian’s Jacker Freedom Alliance, but the hole in her heart still whistles empty where her boyfriend Raf used to be. She fills it with weapons training, JFA patrols, and an obsessive hunt for FBI agent Kestrel, ignoring Julian’s worries about her safety and repeated attempts to recruit her for his revolutionary chat-casts. When anti-jacker politician Vellus surrounds Jackertown with the National Guard, Kira discovers there’s more to Julian’s concerns than she knew, but she’s forced to take on a mission that neither want and that might be her last: assassinating Senator Vellus before he can snuff out Julian’s revolution and the jackers she’s come to love. Amazon

What happens when two people who don’t believe in love happen to fall madly, deeply into the most beautiful relationship they could ever imagine? A train wreck. Twenty-year old Kendall Jordan devises a seat of the pants plan to“play the player.” When Kendall spots gorgeous Cruise Elton from across the room, something in her burns to have him. There’s only one problem; Cruise likes the ladies—a lot, and Kendall has never shared so much as a decent kiss with a guy. Kendall has long since come to discover that love is an illusion that never lasts and Cruise couldn’t agree more. So when Kendall proposes that Cruise tutor her in becoming a female version of himself, Garrison Universities own manwhore, he’s more than happy to comply. But when real feelings begin to emerge, and neither Kendall nor Cruise know how to classify them, everything they once thought they knew is redefined as they discover in one another, Someone to Love. Amazon

Scarlet remembers. Everything. Her past lives, Tristan, Gabriel, Nate: she remembers it all--including how to get to the Fountain of Youth. But time is running out. Heather and Gabriel have been kidnapped by Raven, while the curse that has plagued Scarlet and Tristan for centuries has shifted, putting the star-crossed lovers in more danger than ever before. Water from the Fountain of Youth is the only thing that can save Scarlet and her loved ones. But the water comes at a price. With lives--and hearts--at stake, Scarlet leads her friends on a dangerous journey to the Fountain of Youth. Where eternal life is possible, but death is certain. Amazon

Blood and Snow 6: Masquerade's Moon Snow's birthday party is a Masquerade Ball, but a war is brewing, and her party may be the battle ground.
Blood and Snow 7: Seal of Gabriel The seven magical properties of the Seal of Gabriel.
Blood and Snow 8: Telltale Kisses Snow goes on a kissing spree.

After finally settling into her new life at the Citadel, Thalia is reunited with her father, who is disturbed at the changes within her. Risking banishment, Thalia must work to prove to her clan and herself that she is still capable of leading them. The problem is, her memories haven’t returned, and she cannot shake the feeling that she doesn’t belong. 

Thalia discovers that betrayal runs deep within her clan, just as she sets out to join Joss and Kael in doing the one thing she fears most: track the Septori to save Joss’ kidnapped sister. Along the way, she must confront her own fears on a journey of self-discovery that will take her deep into the stronghold of Denai; as they travel to the ancient floating city of Skyfell.

My Alien Romance Series

Now available in a single volume, The international best selling My Alien Romance series books 1-3 is in one Ebook. Bonus material includes: playlists for each book, an interview with Ace and Alex, and a bonus short story: A Very Alien Valentine's Day.