Friday, November 29, 2013



Check out these Black Friday Deals!
Lee Strauss
The Perception Series
YA sci/fi dystopian boxed set
$6.50  $.99

Complete Perception Series set: Ambition, Perception, Volition and Contrition

The PERCEPTION Series books ( SF/mystery/romance) are Young Adult novels that take place in the not too distant future in a world changed by climate extremes, natural disasters and impending wars, and where scientific breakthroughs cause class divisions--both financially and philosophically. It explores the clash between faith and science and how differences can separate us as enemies or ally us together. And in some cases, even in the midst of betrayal and personal crisis, there's room to fall in love.

Leigh T. Moore


Barnes & Noble:

Anna Sanders expected an anonymous (and uneventful) senior year until she crossed paths with rich-and-sexy Jack Kyser and his twin sister Lucy. Pulling Anna into their extravagant lifestyle on the Gulf Coast, Lucy pushed Anna outside her comfort zone, and Jack showed her feelings she’d never experienced... Until he mysteriously withdrew.

Anna turned to her internship at the city paper and to her old attraction for Julian, a handsome local artist and rising star, for distraction. But both led to her discovery of a decades-old secret closely guarded by the twins’ distant, single father. A secret that could permanently change all their lives.
Laura Pauling 
A Spy Like Me

$2.99  $.99
Eighteen-year-old Savvy Bent expects fireworks on her first date with Malcolm - in Paris! Except over a picnic of sparkling cider and strawberry tarts, a sniper shoots at them.


That’s only the beginning. From the top of the Eiffel Tower to the depths of the catacombs, Savvy must sneak, deceive, and spy to save her family and friends and figure out whether Malcolm is one of the bad guys before she completely falls for him.
Christine Fonseca
The Requiem Series
YA Gothic Romance
Lacrimosa (Book #1) - $2.99 $.99 
Libera Me (Book #2) - $2.99 FREE for Kindle
Dominus (Book #3) - $2.99 $0.99 for Kindle
Some sacrifices should never be made...even for love

Katie Klein
Cross My Heart
YA Romance

$3.99  $1.99 
Amazon only

Jaden McEntyre and Parker Whalen are a wrong fit from the start. Jaden is driven and focused, Harvard Med School within reach. Parker has a past—a reputation—and the rumors about his mysterious habits abound. So there’s no reason why, when they're assigned to work together on a project in English, they should discover they have anything in common, or even like each other, and they definitely shouldn't be falling in love.

Monday, November 18, 2013

5 Things I Wish I'd Known When I First Started Writing

1) It's okay if my first draft stinks. No seriously. It's okay if the first version of my book is downright awful. It's more important that I finish a crappy first draft than to HALF-finish a flawless one. So my advice? Type away! :) Don't worry about grammar or pacing, and if the scene you're working on is lousy, just move forward and try to make the next scene less lousy. :)

2) Critiques might make me cry, but they will also make me a better writer. I'm not going to lie. I read all of my reviews. ALL of them. Why? Because I learn a lot about my writing weaknesses--and how I can improve them--from critical reviews. (I'm speaking only of constructive criticism, of course. Mean criticism is just, well...mean.) So after you're done wiping your tears, use what you've learned from those constructive reviews to make your writing stronger.

3) Everyone works at their own pace. When I first started writing, I felt so lame because some of my writer friends could finish a book in a week. A WEEK! And there I was, taking at least six months to write a book. I felt so much pressure to write faster and wasted a lot of valuable writing time stressing about it. But writing isn't a race. It's a journey. So take your time.

4) It's okay to take a day off. I used to write every single day. I thought that if I didn't take any breaks, then I'd finish my manuscripts super fast and they would be masterpieces. Haha. But that's not how art works. Sometimes you have to take time off and recharge your imagination. Downtime is crucial to the creative process, so don't be afraid to give yourself a break.

5) Celebrate everything. I used to temper my excitement about things, as if rejoicing in my small accomplishments was somehow unprofessional. But success isn't about the big moments, it's about the small ones--the seemingly insignificant triumphs that only I know (or care) about. So don't hesitate to get excited about the little things (or the silly things, or the things no one else notices). Have a personal celebration for ALL of your accomplishments---all the time--because you deserve it! :)

Chelsea Fine

Chelsea lives in Phoenix, Arizona where she spends most of her time writing stories, painting murals, and avoiding housework at all costs. She’s ridiculously bad at doing dishes and claims to be allergic to laundry. Her obsessions include: superheroes, coffee, sleeping-in, and crazy socks. She lives with her husband and two children, who graciously tolerate her inability to resist teenage drama on TV and her complete lack of skill in the kitchen.

Facebook  |  Twitter

Friday, November 15, 2013

How to use Twitter to expand your #AuthorPlatform

Unless you are completely unfamiliar with social media, you've at least heard of Twitter. A social media platform where you send out messages of 140 characters or less. When I first heard about it in 2008, someone explained it to me as a site based entirely on Facebook Updates. "That's the stupidest thing I've ever heard of," I said with disdain. Fast forward to when I decided to indie publish and I knew I needed an author platform. Blog… and what else? I wanted my internet presence to amount to more than a few blog posts that would get lost in the void. So then I reluctantly went to Twitter. I created my profile and tried to figure it out. Fast forward again, and I'm at nearly 4K followers and I pretty much "live" on Twitter.
It is my absolute favorite way to connect with readers/bloggers/fans/other awesome people. It's also a quick way to reach a lot of people that you might not be able to reach. So how do you make Twitter work for you?
1. Follow as many book people/bloggers as you can. Don't do this all at once, because Twitter will think you are a spambot and shut down your account for a few days. Follow people who write in your genre, bloggers you read, agents you might be interested in. I'd also suggest following @maureenjohnson and @TaherehMafi, both authors who are brilliant at using Twitter.
2. Watch and learn. I spent at least a week just creeping on other people's Twitter feeds to figure out "how" to tweet. What people liked, what they found interesting/funny. Which leads me to…
3. Figure out your Twitter "style". This is very much like figuring out your writing style. I try to tweet in the same style that my books are, so people can judge what kind of books I write based on my tweets. I follow the styles of Maureen and Tahereh because they are similar to my personality. Some have described my feed as a string of non-sequitors and it is. Some of my tweets this week:

I also live-tweet events and my observations on them, like the Oscars, or the Superbowl. Other people find these observations amusing, so I normally gain a few followers during those times. I also added a "follow me on Twitter" option to all my contest entries.
4. Tweet! The best way to start is by responding to people. It feels REALLY WEIRD at first to tweet a complete stranger, but most people on Twitter are used to it. My beta reader/very good friend and I met on Twitter when I tweeted about sending out ARCs of one of my books. When you respond to people, that opens up a conversation and then those people will see how lovely and smart and witty you are and follow you back. The way to gain followers is to ENGAGE. The way to LOSE followers is by spamming EVERYONE with links to buy your books.
5. Host contests for bookmarks/swag/ARCs on Twitter. This is a quick and easy way to get some buzz going.
6. Join a chat. Every Thursday night I participate in #NALitChat, which is a chat for authors of New Adult. If you are unfamiliar with that little number sign and what it is doing in front of those words, read on. That is called a hashtag, and anything after that (WITHOUT spaces or punctuation) turns into a link that you can click on, and see what other people are saying about that subject. It's like a flag to add to your tweet so people can see what it's about.
7. #Use #Hashtags #ToYou #Advantage. There are a few writing #Hashtags like: #amwriting, #amediting, and those for various genres and categories.
8. BE YOURSELF. This is MOST important :)

Now get #Hashtagging!

Chelsea M. Cameron is a YA/NA and Adult New York Times/USA Today Best Selling author from Maine. Lover of things random and ridiculous, Jane Austen/Charlotte and Emily Bronte Fangirl, red velvet cake enthusiast, obsessive tea drinker, vegetarian, former cheerleader and world's worst video gamer. When not writing, she enjoys watching infomercials, singing in the car and tweeting (this one time, she was tweeted by Neil Gaiman). She has a degree in journalism from the University of Maine, Orono that she promptly abandoned to write about the people in her own head. More often than not, these people turn out to be just as weird as she is.
Her New Adult Contemporary Romance titles include My Favorite Mistake, which has been bought by Harlequin along with a sequel, My Sweetest Escape (January 28, 2014), Deeper We Fall and Faster We Burn and For Real (November 14, 2013) and the novella, Christmas Catch (November 1, 2014).

Her Young Adult books include Nocturnal, Nightmare, Neither, and Neverend (The Noctalis Chronicles) and Whisper, the first in The Whisper Trilogy. The second and third books in the series, Silence and Listen, will be out in 2014.

Her Adult Contemporary Romance titles include Sweet Surrendering, and, coming soon, Dark Surrendering.

Visit her online: 

Monday, November 11, 2013

Time Out!

Time out means different things to different people. Most think its a bad thing, like when a child is punished for being a little too rambunctious or sassy, but it doesn't have to mean something bad. Taking a much needed time out could be very good, especially if you feel worn out and creatively drained.

In June I experienced a health scare that nearly took my life. It forced me to put on the breaks where my writing (and life) was concerned. While healing has been a challenge, it's allowed me time to evaluate the important things in my life and set priorities a little differently, putting my health and well being closer to the top of that list.

What does that mean for my writing career?

It means not pushing myself so hard. Setting reasonable deadlines and allowing myself to take time off from writing to "refill my creative cup."

We all need to take a break now and then. Allow yourself some guiltless pleasures. Take a walk. Read a book. Spend the day with a friend. Or simply sit on your deck or patio and breathe in some fresh air. You'll be amazed at how it boosts your creativity and helps your muse feel more at ease.

After helping run the family restaurant for most of their marriage, Christine finally broke away to pursue her career as a writer. She's the author of the YA Paranormal Romance, BOUND, the first book in THE CRYSTOR series. She's currently living with her husband and son in the middle of sage brush and lava rock with a spectacular view of the Snake River Canyon in South Central Idaho.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Enter to #Win cool literary toys from MamaKopp!

The Holiday Season is fast approaching, and if you're anything like me, you've got a lot of people to buy for and not a whole lot of ideas about what to get.

I'm a big fan of giving gifts made by Indies of all kinds - whether they be authors, potters, cooks, or crafters. Supporting folks who are working for themselves gives me a double dose of Holiday Spirit!

So, I thought I'd shamelessly plug one of my favorite artisans and then give away a fun Harry Potter toy set appropriate for children or decorating your writing space, which is totes what I would do with it. ;)

My friend Lorilee makes Waldorf-inspired toys and has a popular store on Etsy. Check out some of  her awesome work!

This is the Harry Potter set that is up for grabs:

The giveaway is open to US and Canadian residents only. (Sorry!)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Stacey Wallace Benefiel is the author of the Zellie Wells trilogy, the Day of Sacrifice Omnibus, Found, Crossing, the upcoming Frayed, The Toilet Business - a collection of humorous essays, and multiple short stories. She sometimes goes by S.W. Benefiel or Reina Stowe, but knows she's not foolin' anybody. Stacey lives in an orange house in Beaverton, OR with her two kids who have old people names. When she's not writing, thinking about writing, or driving the kids around, Stacey is at CrossFit, lifting heavy things and cursing the inventor of the Burpee.

Monday, November 4, 2013

National Novel Writing Month of Craziness

As a writer, whether or not you're participating in NaNoWriMo, it's a good idea to write every day. I loved what James Patterson had to say in his pep talk... "Most professional writers keep this kind of pace all year round. Holidays, birthdays, vacations—you name it, we’re writing. The trick is making writing into a daily habit. Same time. Same place. Same hot beverage of choice. Every. Single. Day. Again. And. Again." ~ James Patterson

You can read his entire pep talk here

If writing is what you love, what you want to do for a living, then writing daily is the key. So set a goal and then DO IT.  

My goal this November is to write 100,000 words. Yeah, I'm doing double the NaNo. 

What about you? What are your writing goals?


RaShelle Workman is the international bestselling author of the Dead Roses series ("Sleeping Roses," book 1 in the series, has been translated into Turkish and is NOW available wherever Turkish books are sold), the Immortal Essence series, the Blood and Snow series, the Cindy Chronicles, and Touching Melody (A Forever First Novel). She's sold over three hundred thousand copies of her novels worldwide in the past year, including Japan, Canada, and Europe. You can find RaShelle all over the web, but the best place to start is on her blog:

Friday, November 1, 2013

Stock Versus Professional Photo Shoot.

What every other debates is what they want on their cover. Every time a new book comes out we either fall in love with the cover photo or we despise it. We complain that it's a work of art or a cheap ploy that the author or publisher is using the get readers to buy their book when it's actually horrible.

Some readers wonder why Daemon (aka Pepe Toth) is on so many covers (Indie and traditional) and authors get mad when they see the same thing.

Here's why...

It's called Stock photos.

You can go to sites like


and search for whatever type of images you want. Put them in photoshop and BAM book cover.

These work for a lot of awesome covers. Cover designers do great with these. I have these on 98% of my covers.


But after The Only One was released I realized something that upset me. Look at that cover. It's beautiful. I love that image. I love how it related to a certain scene in the book and conveys the passion of the two characters. But you know what I hate? I hate that I've also found it on ten other covers since it was revealed three months ago.

For my next serial (Forever Wild, a serialized novel) I wanted to have seven covers, so I decided to do a custom photo shoot with K Keeton Designs. I picked out my own models and drove down to Springfield, MO to watch my custom shoot unfold.

I was able to figure out the exact shots I wanted. Pic out the exact models. Set the mood and get everything cohesive for seven

The problem?

It's a lot more expensive.

You can get stock art for about $10 each photo. A custom shoot is anywhere from $200 (if you have maybe a good friend with some photography skills) and upwards in the thousands. That still doesn't include your cover designer fees. So with stock photography you can get a beautiful cover for under $100 and with a custom shoot it can be around $1000. Is it worth the difference? I guess we'll find out when my cover is revealed on November 13th :)

Magan Vernon is a Young Adult and New Adult writer who lives with her family in the insurance capital of the world. When not writing she spends her time fighting over fake boyfriends via social media. You can find her online on