Tag Archives: books

Reviews and FAQs

I got my first official Amazon review!!!

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It’s a solid 3-Stars and overall very positive, along with some very good feedback that I absolutely appreciate. Some of the issues were things that I was aware of – a general use of more casual/modern language in places (and that was a choice I made, even knowing it would likely be an issue for some), while others were things that, quite honestly, I just missed, even though I was careful about researching particular things.

I will probably make a separate FAQ page as time goes by, but for now, I wanted to address some things just to clarify for myself (and anyone else who might have been wondering), but also, particularly for the things I missed – so I know to do better next time!

To start – though it was not a common name, and to be sure it was more often seen as a surname, Rylee as a name is not a completely modern thing. At least not according to my search through Ancestry records of the mid-1800s. In Ry’s case, it was her mother’s family name that her father, in his grief, decided would make a great baby name for his newborn daughter as a way to honor his wife.

While I did spend quite a bit of time looking up individual words to ensure that they were not too out of place – I missed “mantra” completely. I can honestly say I didn’t even think twice about it as I was writing it, or any of the numerous times that I read back over it in the various editing phases. The same goes for “kudzu.” That stuff is all over the place and it never occurred to me that it hasn’t always been that way. But I learned something new, so today is a good day!! XD

I really can’t tell you all how much I value thoughtful, specific feedback like this, because no matter how much we, as authors, think we’ve covered all our bases, there’s always stuff we’ve missed (and I will endeavor to be much more detailed in the future). But if our awesome readers don’t tell us – we might never know. So please – and this isn’t just for In Plain Sight (or any other of my books to come) but for anything you read past or future from other authors – when you read something, especially if you really like it, write a review. Be enthusiastic about what you liked, but if there are issues, don’t be afraid to mention what things didn’t quite work for you. For my books, if there is something truly glaring that you come across, you can also always message me if you don’t want to leave negative public feedback.

I was browsing through the reviews I’ve done for others over the years, and realized that I actually haven’t done that many, which is a travesty because I do read frequently. Not quite as voraciously as I used to, but still… the lack of reviews I’ve done is pretty appalling. I aim to fix that and I  want to challenge my readers to do the same. Especially for books that you really like and/or authors who are not as well known, your review can make a difference to other readers who are considering reading that book. So if you’ve got thoughts about a book, be sure to share them and encourage others to do the same!!

 

How to Read In Plain Sight for Free

For those of you who might be on a tight budget, but still want to read In Plain Sight… I invite you to check out the Kindle Unlimited program.

KUprogram

The first month is free, and if you don’t like it you can always cancel. But if you read a lot, it’s a great way to access a ton of books for a fairly decent price (after your trial, KU is only $9.99 a month). Once you sign up, you can go to the page for In Plain Sight, and click on “read for free.”

Don’t have a Kindle reader… that’s ok too. Because there is an official Kindle reading app from Amazon that makes it super easy to take your entire library with you, wherever you go. It’s free and available for most devices (phones, tablets, computers, etc…).

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In Plain Sight – Now Available

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It’s official – both the Kindle version (currently $3.99) and the physical copies (currently $9.98) of In Plain Sight have been released!!! I’ll be hanging out tonight on Facebook if anyone wants to drop by and celebrate with me. Currently, it’s only available on Amazon, however, in the coming weeks it will likely be available in other places, though at a slightly higher price (due to things that are completely out of my control).

Once you read Ry and Eli’s story, please let me know what you think, not only Amazon reviews (which are always welcome), but feel free to message me here or on FB. I am already aware of some minor formatting issues with the Kindle version, and though I’ve pushed a quick fix for some of them, I am working on a full re-formatting. So hopefully that will be up soon, once I’m done fiddling with it.

Anyway… ENJOY!!!

🙂

 

Final Countdown…

One More Day
As much as I love Les Mis, I really needed a little Eliot and Margo singing today!

This is it!! In Plain Sight will be officially released tomorrow!! Have I mentioned how excited I am? Well… I’M EXCITED!!!!!

But also nervous, of course. So once you read it, please leave a review and let me know what you think of it. I hope you love Ry and Eli’s story as much as I do.

The Kindle version will definitely be available tomorrow (not sure if it will automatically poof from pre-order to available right at midnight or if there is some sort of lag involved), and physical copies should follow soon after (well… as soon as my lazy butt gets out of bed and pushes the publish button). Whether they will be available the same day or not, I don’t know, but generally within a day or so at the most, I would think.

🙂

 

 

The Marketing Process: Book Trailers

(the part where I share my epic fails so hopefully you won’t make the same mistakes)

I got a wild hair up my butt the other night (after watching a trailer for particularly interesting looking book) and thought that it would an absolutely FABULOUS idea for me to make a book trailer for In Plain Sight. I mean, how freaking cool would that be?!!!

I will fully admit that I was overly excited and totally didn’t think any of this through before I sent off the request to the random guy on FIVRR (who had the highest number of positive reviews). The first mistake, besides my failure to employ any sort of critical thinking skills, was choosing “expedited delivery” – meaning I wanted this bad boy in my hands within 24 hours. I mean, really this is what this person does, how hard could it be? (I know, I know… I’m an ass. It’s super freaking hard to do it right. But… EXCITEMENT!!!)

Bless his heart, he tried. And though I really wanted to be mad, as I watched the first video he sent me in a kind of horrified silence (the burning roses were particularly delightful… NOT), I realized almost instantly that it was entirely my fault. I mean, yeah, it was a total travesty, but at the same time, given the difficulty of what I was actually asking for, it was probably about the best he could do in less than a day. So being pissed wasn’t an option and I briefly considered just accepting the video as it was and writing the whole thing off as “lesson learned.” Because one of the things I finally realized – harsh light of day and all that – is that trying to come up with a video to accurately represent the Civil War era (in particular), along with the other elements of my story, on a minuscule budget (I’m cheap so sue me), all in less than 24 hours, is nearly impossible. So I’d totally set him up for failure. Oops, my bad.

However, I did have some revisions built into my “contact” (such that it was) so as a last-ditch, I contacted him and was like, ok, I’m so sorry but… ummm… that’s not really what I was looking for. I followed that with a laundry list of more specific feedback, and a few things that I probably should have included the first time I messaged him. What?! Pretty sure we’ve already established that it was late and I wasn’t thinking! XD Thankfully, he agreed to do some editing without adding any additional charges. Whew!

The finished product still isn’t necessarily near to an idealized version of what I might have wanted, though honestly, I think that would have been difficult to pull off even with a decent budget – short of actually making my own mini-movie, which obviously isn’t something I’m able to do at this time – but at least it does get the point across.

Anyway, let me know what you think of it.

The moral of the story though, is it’s definitely worth it to take the extra time to fully think through your projects before rushing to get them completed. No matter how excited you are, if you fail to cover all your bases in the beginning, odds are you will be disappointed in the end. 😉

 

Countdown: One Week To Go!!

It’s hard to believe it, but In Plain Sight will released into the wild this time next week. From concept to completion, the telling Ry’s story has been a long time coming – over 10 years. For those of you who have stuck with me along the way,  there aren’t words enough to express how thankful I am for your support and feedback. I couldn’t have done it without you.

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Giphy

Anyway, to celebrate, I’m having a little release party over on Facebook on August 7th from 7p to 11p EST. Drop on by anytime during that time to hang out and party! Lots of fun and maybe even a few giveaways!! Can’t wait!!!

PS… Don’t forget that I’m donating 50% of all presale royalties to help a friend in need (you can read all about it here). So it’s a good time to get a great book to read and help someone out of a rough situation. ❤

 

 

Best Laid Plans…

So… apparently (even though it said it would take 6-8 weeks), there are print copies of IPS available in various places. I’m waiting on an email to see what can be done to reverse this (if anything) – because I really, really wanted the release date to be August 7th. For REASONS!!

If not, I’ll eventually get over it, but either way, you may want to wait a bit before buying a physical copy. I mean, as much as I would LOVE for you buy my lovely little book (GO RIGHT NOW>>> BUY IT!!!), I don’t want any of you to pay the $14.75 sticker price that is currently listed.  Eww!

On release day (August 7th) or shortly there after, the Amazon price for the paperback will be just under $10. It’s still a bit higher than I want it to be, but that’s just the way the cookie crumbles. I had to split distribution (hence the early release hiccup), because if I did it all in one place, I would have been stuck with just the higher price and honestly – I wouldn’t pay that much for a book (I mean… potentially I would… but it would really depend on the book). And I know I’m awesome, but $15 is a lot to ask for an unknown author’s first book. So yeah, just hang tight a little longer!

Obviously, the Kindle version, which is currently up for pre-sale*, is the best deal (I have so much more leeway with that pricing). But I also know that some people really, really like having a physical book in their hands. In the meantime, I just want to make sure that you aren’t overpaying.

🙂

 

* Don’t forget – 50% of all pre-sale royalties are being donated. (read more about it here)

A Little Fundraiser

L and V
Credit: Shot in the Dark Photography

I recently had a friend who passed away after a long battle with stage IV breast cancer. She was an amazing woman and a true fighter, and though she was very much not ready to go (nor were any of us ready to lose her), sometimes cancer just doesn’t care about our own desires.

My primary way of dealing with grief has always been to just keep as busy as possible, all while not talking much about it – and this is pretty much what I’ve been doing. However, I have also been wanting to do something to help raise funds for her fiance because I know he’s still got a lot to take care of even while struggling with his own grief. So I got to thinking, since my debut novel In Plain Sight is coming out on August 7th, and with the Kindle version currently available for presale on Amazon, I am going to donate 50% of all presale royalties raised between now and August 7th to her fiance’s GoFund Me campaign.

I invite you all to help me make this an epic gift in Larissa’s honor!

 

Simple Musings Gets An Update

While we all wait with baited breath for the August 7th release of In Plain Sight, I have taken this opportunity to do a little update for Simple Musings (an eclectic collection of poetic thoughts on love and loss, life and death, nature, spirituality and so much more) as well.

Simple Musings

To celebrate the gorgeous new cover art, I’ve released a Kindle version and this week only – it’s available for FREE!!

I’m not going to lie, in addition to poetry dealing with the grief and loss I experienced when my mother died, there is a lot of angsty love poems from the days before I was married. What? It was 25+ years ago… don’t judge me!! XD

 

Release Date for In Plain Sight

In Plain Sight preorder

My debut novel, In Plain Sight, will be released on August 7, 2018!! The Kindle version is currently available for pre-order on Amazon. Print copies will also be available by that date (not sure about pre-order yet).

For those of you who have been working with me on this project over the years, you may recall that particular day is a significant one in the book. Once I realized how close I was to getting everything together and ready for publishing , it quickly became clear that was the perfect day to launch Ry and Eli’s story into the universe.

I’m still working on pricing for the print copies – that’s my main hold up at the moment, now that I’ve finished all the last minute editing. My original set up is pricing a lot higher than I want it to (due to some of the distribution options I’ve picked), so I’m going to fiddle around with it some more to see if I can’t get the price down some. Either way, the Kindle version will be $3.99 when it’s released, and for those that don’t have a Kindle, there is a free Kindle reader app that is available for almost any device. But if you are like me, having a physical book in-hand is a lovely thing, so I will definitely continue to look for a solution that allow that happen in the best possible way.

I’m so happy the way this all worked out and I really can’t wait to share my book with you all.