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Showing posts from April, 2011

When life hands you lemons, sue life's ass, or beg. Or something

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Okay let's say no one's buying your books.** How can you make this into a unique selling opportunity?

--Emphasize the exclusive nature of this book. It's a small club! It's a chance to discover virgin territory! Be one of the few, the proud, the readers of this book.

--Talk about the rocketing growth of future sales. So in the first month two people bought your book. Next month, make sure you've bullied at least four people into buying. Buy the damn thing yourself if you have to. Your campaign for that month is all about how "my book is taking off!" and "Word of mouth -- means twice the sales!"

--Try for the pathetic. Here's your patter: "My dog needs eye surgery and I can't afford it. Hey, you, passing by. Stop and pay attention to wretched me. I want you to pretend that I'm sitting on a street corner with a tin full of change and some really old apples on a tray in front of me. I'm dressed in filthy rags and my hair is a mess…

Partial Kick Ass Heroine Identification Guide

A partial guide, dammit, not a partial heroine. I'd do a chart, but that involves software and clicking. Plus I'm hiding from my family and time is a-ticking. I got ten minutes for this entry.

Today we'll be talking about two major KAHs Rural and Urban, Paranormal. We've heard that the Paranormal KAH might soon be a vanishing species--their sales are down and that's a pity. We happen to love KAHs which is why we think we can write a guide.

First, a few basic KAH facts. All KAHs must:

1. Kick ass. And not just human ass. Demons, vampires, werewolves, jackel-headed gods, fairies, succubi you name it. Their asses will be handed to them by the KAH

2. Be part of a series. No point in Stand Alone KAHs. It just doesn't happen. If you read a stand alone KAH it's because her numbers didn't work out and the publisher dropped her. The author was ready to do 10 more books. In fact the author probably has already written those books.

3. Demonstrate increasing power. Over…
So what if sales for my stand-alone stuff are crappy? (I'm not supposed to mention that because it turns out that success, or the illusion of it, breeds more success, but whew, those numbers are stinking up the place) BUT WHO CARES? This is the important part: HEIDI FREAKING CULLINAN likes my books. Or maybe she means she likes the Bonnie Dee / Summer Devon books. That's fine with me--I really did co-write those things.

HEIDI FREAKING CULLINAN is fast turning into one of those authors for me and it just makes me want to tap dance with joy to think she knows who I am. I think the last time I felt like this was when Valerie Parv said she liked my book. I could dine out on this feeling for a few months and not even notice the fact that I sold fewer than 20 books. The approval of peers you respect is a heady pleasure. No wonder I see congratulatory notes back and forth on twitter. Public displays of affection via Mutual Admiration Societies might be annoying** to outsiders but it&#…

5 of 5 stars for Mad Baron

Once again I'm posting a review (this one's from Romanceaholic) all over the internet, but honestly, the first couple of reviews for a book are such a relief -- when they're good, I mean.

This is my first Summer Devon novel, but I must say that she is incredibly skilled with both sexual tension and tasty love scenes.

The urge to say HEY! YAY! is extremely hard to suppress. But I swear this is the last copy/paste-paste-paste-paste HEY! YAY! I'll do. At least for this book. Although I don't guarantee I'll shut up on those yahoo groups.


I'd go on a tangent about how annoying it is to see self promo everywhere, but you already know that.

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Aw, back to grim non-romance-based reality: my poor middle guy is sick as a dog. blearuuuuugh--during school vacation week too.

note

When you get to know your editor you don't have to be as careful when you submit something to her. Daer EditorThis is our book. A paritial of it, anyway! Ha! We love our book and because we have pets we think you should pubish it and also we knit. And we belong ot some many groups that you have herd of that will demonstrate we are cerious about our career. If you do not publihs it we will go all over the internet and weep about how you crushed our dreams, you horrid beyotch.Summmer Devon* * *
UPDATE: The editor said yes, she'd buy the book. Yay!

why I don't do many promo loops

All those yahoo loops--the ones in which writers can post excerpts and links--consist of authors talking at each other. Readers never seem to bother visiting the loops. Except wait! EVERY SINGLE TIME I go to post my books, I read a couple of intriguing excerpts and then my credit card ends up in my hand and oh, no....I cross the line into reader again.

Those free promo opportunities always end up costing me money.

skeery internet world in which we're living

But before we get started today--have you bought our new book yet? Or have you asked for a review copy? Why not?

Okay. Review copy brings us to .....
#1 scary internet trend. WTF? I'm getting scathes of emails (if "scathes" = more than five, less than ten) from people wanting me to review their books. The requests are polite and--here's something cool--most employ proper grammar and punctuation.

But still. WTF? Where are these people finding me? Why me? Why their books? Is this going to get worse and worse as the self-publishing trend explodes? Yes, of course it is.

I have occasionally sent out unsolicited books to people but not any more. I never will again. It just feels odd to find someone I don't know asking me for a favor. Actually I'm scared when people I do know ask me for the favor. Because what if I say yes and HATE their book? Will they go all Howett on my ass?

Or what if I don't fulfill the unspoken contract and read their book at all? The only reas…

Happy New Release Day To Us!

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Hey, lookit! Bonnie and Summer have a new book out, House of Mirrors.


1902--Jonah finds refuge and passion with enigmatic carnival owner, Rafe Grimstone. The open-hearted preacher’s son will risk damnation for love, but Rafe hides his identity like the changing images in a house of mirrors.

Want a review copy? Ask me.

nostalgia

I was reading Sno Ho by Ethan Day and had to stop. It's a cheery, fun, fluffy bit of a book, but the voice of the narrator made gave me the teary snuffles. He sounded exactly like my friend JD, but ExActLEEEy. The over-wrought, exaggerated responses, followed by embarrassment and then the attempt at dignity-- pure JD. Even some of the phrasing seemed to echo him. And especially the funny. Oh man, the funny. With a waggle of the eyebrows or a delicate flair of the nostrils, JD could make you crack up at anything, especially art history lectures, which really isn't good for the morale of the class.

I guess it's good to be reminded of dead friends. Except here's the thing...I didn't see JD the last year of his life--he moved home to some midwestern state after he got diagnosed with AIDS. I wrote (this was pre-internet. Or maybe not, but JD was a Luddite so he wouldn't have a computer) but I didn't call more than a couple of times. I was young, I didn't kno…

I suppose it's inevitable

Diane Wynn Jones, Judith Merkle Riley, Edith Layton...all these writers keeling over. I found an author whose work I really love and went to read about him. Yay! He's younger than me! he'll keep producing as long as I need him.

I better write to him and warn him not to pull an Emma Jensen.

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If Horatio Alger released his top seller RAGGED DICK today, it would have to be one wicked BDSM title. (yeah, I tweeted that, but really I don't want to be alone with that imagery. Also what price MOBY DICK?)

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Today's earworms are a series of Al Stewart songs. The tunes are meh, but at least the lyrics are interesting.

I'm just enough of a hypochondriac to wonder if earworms are a sign of BDS (brain dissolving syndrome) Anyway. I'm going to Pandora on to drive out "On the Border" and "Chelsea Hotel" and get back to writing a cheerful pot dealer who's going to cause trouble for The Hero.

WOETRY!

The legend hunts beside the transported birth. Why can't the twisting overtone recover?
How does a harmony malfunction? Before a blackboard listens a censored dust
Around the burnt center clicks the implemented space.
His heroin rules the desire beside a crossing atom.
. . . .
now You Write The Rest of My Poem.

little SBD

I dreamed I won a contest in which I could become male for about 24 hours. I realized I still liked men and thought yes! this will be very useful for my writing! Talk about taking your job seriously. Speaking of contests, The Gentleman and the Rogue just finaled in the Passionate Plume contest.

Summer has finaled in that contest twice before (for two novellas, "Invisible Touch" and "Knight's Challenge") and I was sure I had saved a little widget thingy to show off, but apparently I didn't plaster it all over the place. Summer is a doot when it comes to promo, I guess. They may send me another widget and if they do, I'll be sure to save it here. It's a nice one.

What I read last week: Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter, which I've already reviewed elsewhere. I enjoyed that sucker. I think I loved it, in fact. I still wonder why the hell Larry, who knew there was more to life, stayed put and went into that damn garage every day, but I guess southern …