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Hey everyone!

I have a short story in a new anthology! Check out all the info below!

From castles to forests, humans to animals, bards to the rainbow bridge—journey into magical lands, imaginations, and adventure with seven talented Solstice Publishing authors.

realms-of-fantastic-stories-001-1

Cats prepare for one of their kind to cross the rainbow bridge. A minstrel assists in protecting the kingdom he serves. A queen is in hiding… and other stories that will fire the imagination of all who enter this realm.

 

https://youtu.be/DXubrPBV458

 

Realms of Fantastic Stories Vol 1 features K.C. Sprayberry, Stephen St. Clair, Rocky Rochford, Rick Ellrod, KateMarie Collins, Debbie De Louise, and Margaret Egrot with tales sure to delight and please.

 

 

getBook.at/RoFSVol1

 

 

Back to the grind

Hey! It’s Monday!

Had a great weekend! Went to Portland with my hubby to attend Rose City Comicon. To be honest, it was the first time we’d been without our daughters and not around other family in a long time. Spent way too much money, but I’ve got a great outfit to wear to Renton City Comicon now!

‘Emile’s Blade’ is with my editor at Solstice Publishing. Just heard from her this morning, in which she declared it to be ‘riproaring’. This is a good sign, I think.

Oh! And the cover’s done already!

emile%27s-blade-001

I’ve gotten the three transition chapters done for the combo book. Waiting for ‘Emile’s Blade’ to be done with edits and proofread, then I can insert it and get the process started on that one.

So, what’s next? Well, I’m going to return to Lily, Talin, and Kade’s world. That’s right, I’m doing a follow up to ‘Mark of the Successor’!

BB

Happy Tuesday! I hope everyone had an excellent Labor Day yesterday! We spent part of the day at the ocean. Even witnessed Poseidon being denied a sacrifice!

By the way, if you have a small car (like a Mini Cooper), don’t drive on the beach.  And, if you do, don’t park near the surf. Because you will get stuck as the tide is coming in. Which leads to needing a team that specializes in pulling cars out. And the state park Ranger taking note. That last one is the kicker, since it’s now known you ignored the ‘do not drive on the beach’ signs.

That’s not really what I want to talk about today, though. One thing I’ve noticed about authors is that a good number of them really don’t know how to talk to their publisher. It can cost you future contracts.

First off, most publishers have more than one author in their stable. And several hundred, if not thousand, titles that they have the rights to. If you’re emailing them and expecting your title requires their immediate attention, you’re probably going to be put off to the side. Why? Because no one likes being dictated to. It’s human nature.

Publishers have a lot they do, most of which authors don’t see. They juggle hundreds of authors, thousands of titles, a day. Add to that new submissions, cover art requests, making sure editors and proofreaders are working well with the authors they’re paired with, uploading new releases, marketing the brand, etc. It’s rarely about a single title.

So, don’t threaten. Don’t be demanding. Be polite, acknowledge that their time is important. Thank them for taking the time to deal with your problem at their convenience.

Oh, and unless they tell you they never said something, don’t forward them their email as ‘proof you agreed to this’. Especially over a weekend when they’re not at work.

My writing mentor, Nick Pollotta, said it the best. He taught me that this business is ‘incestous, in that everybody knows everybody else – and they talk’. He was beyond right in that assessment. One pushy email will make publishers remember your name in a bad way. One that makes them think of how you present yourself to them when reading your next manuscript.

You got your foot in the door. Don’t shoot it off.

BB

 

Everyone give a warm welcome to author S. C. Alban!

1. What’s the title of your latest release? Link?

My most current release is A Life Without Living. A paranormal romance, it’s the first book in The Strega Series. The second installment Barely Living Alive is currently in contract and undergoing edits. It will be released later this year.

2. Why do you like writing in this genre?

I like writing paranormal because I love the unexplained. I am a huge believer in the improbable and am fascinated with the realm of the unexplainable. I love how this genre pushes one’s imagination past everything that is known to be true in the current world.

3. What do you like to read?

I am a huge Anne Rice fan. I love her witch series and, of course, her vampire stuff. I love Richelle Mead, Laurell K. Hamilton, and Stephen King, but mostly, if it’s a good book, I’ll read it. This includes YA, SciFi, mystery, contemporary fiction, and straight up romance (including historical).

4. Favorite movie?

I am a HUGE movie fan and I love everything from slapstick comedy, to documentaries, to horror. But, there are two movies that I can watch over and over and over again. The first is Chocolat (2000), and the second is Cousins (the 1989 film). When it comes down to it, they’re both really about relationship intricacies, so, I suppose I’m really drawn to those types of films that focus on that.

5. What are your writing habits? Music or silence? Daily regimen or spurts of creativity?

It really depends on how I’m feeling. Sometimes, I pop on the headphones, crank up the music and just flow. Other times, I need total silence. I try to write something everyday. When I’m trying to finish a novel, I give myself a word count goal. When I’m working on a script I give myself a scene goal. It really just depends on what I’m doing that day and where the deadlines are.

6. What was the most surreal moment you’ve had as an author?

I think that would definitely be when I was scheduled to do a book signing at a pretty popular bookstore in my area. When I arrived, there was a huge sign out front that said “Author Signing Today.” My first thought was, “Great. I’m supposed to be signing here today, too. Why would they put two of us here on the same day.” I was a bit bummed. Then, the friend I was with informed me that I was the author, that the advertisement was for me. It all kind of hit me at that moment. I realized that I was an author, and everything that went along with it. It was definitely surreal.

7. How can readers find you?

Readers can find my all over social media. I also have a website. The links to my contacts are below:

http://www.scalban.com

http://www.facebook.com/scalban

http://www.twitter.com/muchasfloras

http://www.instagram.com/s.c._alban

8. What do you know now about being published that you wish you’d known before submitting?

The number one thing I wish I would have known before embarking on this journey was to start a blog way before I actually did. It would have given me such a better understanding of how things work and I wouldn’t have felt that I was learning it at the same time as I was trying to get my book to publication.

9. Favorite snack/drink while writing?

Actually, I often have to be reminded to eat when I’m working, and I work with a water bottle by my side. But, occasionally I’ll have something crunchy like popcorn or pita chips. Nothing too greasy though, I like a clean keyboard.🙂

10. Look at your writing area…what’s the item you keep to inspire you (piece of artwork, figurine)?

I always have a candle burning while I write, I don’t know why, it just is nice. And, lately, I’ve been keeping a few crystals/stone within reach as fidgets…. Something for my hands to do when I’m thinking about how I’m gonna write myself out of the mess that I inevitable create.

Thanks for stopping by, S.C.!

BB

Closing a door

Hey.

It’s Wednesday, not Monday. And I haven’t exactly been on the ball each week with posts here.

I did a big push and wrapped up “Emile’s Blade” earlier this week. It’s with my beta readers now, and should be under contract/with my editor at Solstice Publishing shortly after the first of September. Now I’m starting to connect all three Amari stories (Fin’s Magic, Alaric’s Bow, and Emile’s Blade) into a single book that we can release in both ebook and print formats.

I’m working with two different cons now! I’ll be a guest at Renton City Comicon in October, and a panelist at RustyCon in January. Love that these new opportunities are starting to open up to meet readers. And help authors.

There’s been other things going on, though, beyond the books. I’ve had some real issues lately with feeling like I have too many balls in the air. Work, writing, house, college (oldest heads that way in a few weeks), high school swim practice for the youngest, promoting, doctor and dentist appointments, vehicle maintenance, and about a dozen other things. It’s led me to spend more time just sitting and not wanting to participate in much of anything over being excited for the future.

A lot of this is related to my parents both passing away within seven months of each other. My dad’s death hit me really hard. When I was there the last time, I brought home one of his sweaters just to have something that still had a bit of his scent on it. My mom was morbidly obese. So am I. And I won’t die the way she did, so I’m looking into having surgery.

Our insurance won’t cover it, so I need to sell some books. LOTS of books. We’re looking at $20,000 to get this done.

So, yeah, things haven’t been the best. I never set out to lie to anyone reading this blog. If anything, I wanted to be brutally honest. To live past the age my mom was, I have to do something now. And current book sales aren’t going to get me there.

Still, it’s moving forward with the planning. It’s getting the preliminary testing and visits done now so, when the money is there, we can do this.

Oh, and I’m going to take a dream trip to Scotland when it’s done and I’ve recovered from the surgery.

Ever so slowly, the door on my past is closing. In some ways, I’ve kept it open for far too long. I don’t think I’m done grieving, which is one reason why I had to force myself to finish up ‘Emile’s Blade’. When you read it, and I hope you will, you will understand why. I’m probably going to have bad days ahead of me. When the desire to call him and give him some exciting news will remind me that he’s not able to answer any more. And there will be days where the juggling act I do will want to come crashing down. But I hope, and feel, that those days will be farther and farther apart. That the good will outweigh the bad, the memories give me more smiles than tears.

The stories that still need to be written will come to pass. The surgery, and Scotland, will eventually happen as well. And maybe, possibly, hopefully, the future I want won’t be as far away as it seems.

BB

Hey! I know, I’ve let things slide for a few weeks. It was a combination of a lot of stuff. Vacation, real life, and a half dozen other things that had to be done before we got to relax.

This past weekend, at the end of our vacation, I traveled to eastern WA. Partly to help my sister with estate stuff. Partly to lay our parents’ ashes to rest. And partly to attend my 30th high school reunion.

Yes, I AM old enough for a 30th reunion. LOL.

Now, I wasn’t one of the popular crowd back then. I had a few friends, yes, but we weren’t the ‘in’ crowd. I got picked on some because of my weight, I was ‘too smart’, etc.

There were two official gatherings. Things started to be odd the first night. Part of it could’ve been because we’d buried our parents earlier that day, but I wasn’t in a huge mood to be social. I went with the intent of staying put and seeing if I could actually recognize people over planning to work the room.

Someone I remembered as being nice but not much else got all excited when she saw me. She insisted that I ‘don’t go anywhere’ as the husband of a classmate had been dying to meet me since he found out I was going. Apparently, this guy is big on Goodreads. Found my books – and my photo – and went nuts because he remembered seeing me in her yearbooks!

That’s how it started. I had more and more classmates coming up Friday, all excited about me writing books. One of the organizers told me to bring them with me to the gathering on Saturday (I had brought the limited stock I had as a friend wanted to buy my newest one).

Saturday night, I sold books. Several books. Sold out of 3 titles, plus a copy of one other. And the one thing I heard over and over, even from those who didn’t get books, was that they’d been wondering who the ‘class celebrity’ would end up being. The one person out of almost 400 graduates who truly broke free of that town and did something famous/memorable/immortal. And that it was me.

I spent my time in high school living vicariously through them, imagining their lives to be so much better than mine. Now, they’re thrilled to have a published author come out of their graduating class.

Yeah, I can live with that.

BB

Good morning! Everyone please give author Francene Stanley a warm welcome!

1. What’s the title of your latest release? Link?

Karm Currents, released on March 16 th is the fourth and final novel in the paranormal Moonstone series. set in the little village of St. Ives, Cornwall, England. Each book is a story that stands alone. In Karm Currents, Liliha continues her telepathic sojourns where she whispers advice to strangers. But, Liliha is an ordinary woman, separated from her teenage daughters in Australia. Her youngest daughter, Alissa, arrives to live with her, and brings her grandmother. As if that interference isn’t enough, Liliha’s ex turns up to take their daughter home. And then there’s the love interest, Harry.

https://www.amazon.com/Karm-Currents-Francene-Stanley/dp/162526349X

2. Why do you like writing in this genre?

I love the work out possibilities that lie beneath the surface of everyday life. Perhaps we’ve lived before. If we have, we might have known each other in a previous life.

3. What do you like to read?

I read everything I can, although some of the novels are not as engaging as others.

4. Favorite movie?

Movies that contain hidden possibilities fascinate me. Labyrinth with David Bowie, all The Lord of The Rings, Chrysalis with the bunch of old-uns who moved to a higher plane … so many. However, I watched The Bourne Conspiracy Four last night and thoroughly enjoyed the plot, the action, and the way the characters assisted each other against the bad guys.

5. What are your writing habits? Music or silence? Daily regimen or spurts of creativity?

I like total silence when I’m writing. At the moment, I’m working on the first section of my memoirs, which covers the forties to the seventies. Any noise distracts me from my train of thought.

6. What was the most surreal moment you’ve had as an author?

My most surreal moment came when the local paper sent a photographer after the launch of my first book. What shocked me was my change. Instead of the calm woman who took everything in her stride, I became a shaking wreck, unable to speak without a quiver in my voice or form a proper sentence.

7. How can readers find you?

My author page at Amazon shows a little about my varied life experiences and lists my books. Link: http://amzn.to/1ljAdMf

8. Look at your writing area…what’s the item you keep to inspire you (piece of artwork, figurine)?

On the shelves above my writing desk, I can gaze at photos of my three children (two deceased), an embroidery of wildflowers, my singer/songwriter brochure, photos of myself and my sister as children, my grandmother’s bible, a woven Indian headband and some preserved ginger in a jar from my German co-writer. They remind me of who I am and how far I’ve come.

Thanks for stopping by, Francene! Best of luck with your writing!

BB