Archive for April, 2014

Today, for Last Monday, we get to say hello to Solstice Shadows author D.M. Sears!

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

Eden’s Darkness http://www.amazon.com/Edens-Darkness-Ellethny-D-M-Sears-ebook/dp/B00J383J12/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&sr=8-2&qid=1398692241

2. Why do you like writing in this genre?

For me paranormal fantasy is so much fun, you have so much leeway to use your imagination. I have always been a

creative person and this gives way for me to express and use that creativity.

3. What do you like to read?

Anything from Anne Rice, Christine Feehan, Dean Koontz, PC and Kristen Cast, Tolkien, Suzanne Collins, and Allison

Goodman…to name a few. I own so many books it is hard to name all my go to reads!

4. Favorite movie?

Again, I have over 1,000+ DVDs, so it is difficult to name a favorite. Chennai Express, Jab Tak Hai Jaan, Paa, Schindler’s

List, and the Star Wars set are my must haves. I love a broad range of films for certain.

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

I find that I absolutely under no circumstances can I write in silence. I have a difficult time finding my focus, so I

usually write with my iTunes blaring or in a loud place with a lot of kids hanging out. Children tend to boost my

creativity. If I get a sudden spurt, I will grab my iPad and make notes for later. I end up bouncing my ideas off my

mother, daughter, and devoted sister before I begin the writing process, they help me more than I can express!

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

I was sitting in the local café in my town and over heard people discussing Eden’s Mark. They had no idea who I was,

and one of them turned to my table and told me I needed to read it because a person from our town wrote it. For a

stranger to tell me to read my own book was indescribable. Something I did not think would happen, people in my

town reading my book, I was taken back.

7. How can readers find you?

My fan page on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/DM-Sears/675167942528555

My gmail: ellethnyseries@gmail.com

My website: http://myrissaeden1.wix.com/ellethnyseries

And lastly, Twitter: @DMSears1

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

It is harder than it looks LOL! The promoting and social media to organize is much more than I knew prior to

submitting. I will say this, it has been fun and a great experience that I would do again and again given the chance!

9. Favorite snack/drink while writing?

I MUST have coffee or tea while writing. It is not that I need it for energy, it is more of a habit. Write a few sentences,

sip drink, edit…rinse and repeat. It is my crutch so to speak, without it, I am lost.

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

This sounds funny, but I do not have anything for inspiration on my desk. When I am in need I call my mom, my sister,

talk to my daughter, or just gaze out a window. Music is probably the only thing I guess I can say I keep with me for

that purpose, but it ends up becoming that background noise I need to focus.



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First off, I’d like to thank Marie Lavender and her blog, Writing in the Modern Age, for nominating me! Check out her blog here: http://marielavender.blogspot.com/2014/04/liebster-award-nomination.html

Here’s the rules, if you’re intrigued.

The Rules

1.  Link back and thank the blogger who nominated you in your post.

2.  List 11 facts about yourself.

3.  Answer the 11 questions asked by the blogger who nominated you.

4.  Pick 5 – 10 new bloggers (must have less than 300 followers) to nominate and ask them 11 new questions. Do not re-nominate the blogger that nominated you.

5.  Go to each new blogger’s site and inform them of their nomination.

So, here we go!

11 Facts About Me

1. I didn’t start writing until I was 40.

2. I’m very much more a cat person than a dog person.

3. Even fake spiders can scare the bajeebers out of me.

4. I like to cook.

5. I hate to clean.

6. I love jewelry.

7. We own approximately 250-300 movies on dvd/blu-ray.

8. My office wall is a mixture of fantasy art, SCA award scrolls, autographed photos, and art by my mother in law.

9. I adore raspberries, blackberries, and strawberries but don’t care for blueberries.

10. I’ve shed 81lbs in the last 8 months.

11. I get most fired up when someone tries to mix religion and politics, or religion and women’s rights.


Questions Asked By Marie Lavender:

1.  Name three secrets that you never told anyone

A) I used to hate broccoli

B) I thought I saw Bigfoot as a child

C) My secret guilty pleasure is watching “The Maury Show”.

2. If you won the lottery, what would be the first thing you would do?  

Put money aside for my kids to go to college, pay off the house, and save the rest.

3. Looking over the last ten years, what is one goal you have achieved and one that you have not achieved?  

Achieved – got published!

Not achieved – not down to a healthy weight. Yet.

4. What are your plans for retirement? And will you travel, if so where and why?  

Retirement? LOL. That’ll happen when my hubby retires, and I’ll probably still be writing. We both have lots of places in the world we’d love to see, so I can see us doing some traveling as our budget allows.

5. Favorite drink on a Friday night?

Right now, due to my diet, alcohol rarely happens. Though I do like some Irish whiskey or hard cider when I can drink.

6. What do you think the secret is to a good marriage or relationship with a significant other is?  

Communication, commitment, and the ability to listen to each other.

7. Name three words that describe your personality.

Stubborn, determined, honest  

8. Home-cooked meal or take-out? 

Mainly home cooked right now because of my diet, but I also enjoy dining out. There are some days where it’s just too much to cook.

9. When was the last time you blogged and what was the topic? 

I post my blog on Mondays typically. The last one was on staying optimistic even when your books aren’t selling. And why it’s important not to let your frustrations out on social media.

10. What do you think the key is to happiness? 

There’s a key? I think it’s different for everyone. In general terms, it’s finding something that you’re truly passionate about and do it, despite what anyone might say. Being true to yourself is better, I think, than staying in a job that kills you emotionally. A great paycheck is fine, but you won’t be happy if you don’t love what you’re doing to earn that wage.

11. Who is your favorite poet and why?

Shakespeare or T.S. Eliot. I’m not a huge poetry fan, but I like the sonnets and I love ‘Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats’.

Here’s my nominees!

1. Tony Rudzki http://writingsfromthefruitcellar.wordpress.com/

2. Todd Diel http://toddsshorts.blogspot.com/

3. Serena Zane http://serenazaneauthor.blogspot.com/

4. Kate McClure http://ommers.blogspot.com/2014/01/building-blocks.html

5. Jeff Hargett http://strandsofpattern.blogspot.com/2014/04/omalleys-flower-at-utah-childrens.html


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Good Monday, everyone! For those of you who celebrated Easter yesterday, my best wishes. I spent the weekend breaking fingernails and pinching skin on my hands as I assembled a desk and dresser from Ikea. Our youngest is no longer a little girl, and the time had come to revamp her bedroom. The bunk beds will be donated sometime this week, I think. She’s loving her new space, so the sore muscles were worth it.

In some ways, spending a couple hours figuring out the furniture was a welcome break from checking sales and seeing them go nowhere. One of the most frustrating things about being an author is knowing you put so much work into a story and no one wants to read it. I take that back. People do want to read it. Sometimes. But they don’t always want to pay for it. I’ve lost count of the number of people who thought I should give them a copy of one of my books over buying them. That’s not being supportive of the author. That’s being a cheapskate who thinks the time the author spent writing it, the artist spent on the cover, the editor and proofreader spent making it as perfect as possible isn’t worth $0.99. 

Going a few days, or longer, without a sale is never fun. Every author encounters this at some point, especially those of us early in our careers. It’s depressing, discouraging and generally peeves us to no end. Then the doubt sets in. What’s wrong with my book? Is it the title? Is the blurb putting them off? What about the people I met at the con/grocery store/hair salon? They said it looked interesting and they’d look into getting a copy. So, why haven’t I seen a single sale?

It’s almost enough some days to give up writing entirely. And some authors do.

The thing is, you can’t force anyone to buy your books any more than a shoe company can force someone to buy their shoes or a t.v. station can compel you to watch their shows. You have to find that inner strength, the one you relied on so much when you submitted your first m/s. You remember the thrill of seeing even a single sale, and hope that your stats will change in an hour/day/week. And you keep writing. Keep promoting. Keep hoping.

Have I got a following? I think so, at least the basis of one. I’ve got about 150 followers to this blog, over 2k on Twitter, and over 800 on FB. I also know fewer than 10% of them have ever bought one of my titles. That’s just part of the business. Maybe one day one of you will decide my ramblings here have interested you enough that you’ll pick up one of my books. Or someone on Twitter will retweet one of my book links and ten new people will see it and check it out. It’s the great unknown.

Every day, every hour, your sales can change. Sure, some days it feels like I’m preaching to the choir or pushing the boulder the size of my minivan up a really steep hill. But I won’t give up. I worked too hard to get here. I can work some more.


(P.s. Here’s all the links in case you missed them earlier!)

Amazon – Kindle/Daughter of Hauk:  http://www.amazon.com/Daughter-Raven-Chronicles-KateMarie-Collins-ebook/dp/B00HG15SBM/ref=sr_1_2_bnp_1_kin?ie=UTF8&qid=1389373492&sr=8-2&keywords=katemarie+collins

Amazon – Kindle/Son of Corse: http://www.amazon.com/Corse-Raven-Chronicles-KateMarie-Collins-ebook/dp/B00HFF3MUS/ref=sr_1_5_bnp_1_kin?ie=UTF8&qid=1389373492&sr=8-5&keywords=katemarie+collins

Amazon – Kindle/Mark of the Successor: http://www.amazon.com/Mark-Successor-KateMarie-Collins-ebook/dp/B00HFF3SH0/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&sr=8-1&qid=1389373492

Amazon – Kindle/Kick the Can: http://www.amazon.com/Kick-Can-KateMarie-Collins-ebook/dp/B00HG15R36/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1389373492&sr=8-3&keywords=katemarie+collins

Amazon – Kindle/The Strength Within: http://www.amazon.com/Strength-Within-P-Estelle-ebook/dp/B00H2SVIS6/ref=sr_1_8_bnp_1_kin?ie=UTF8&qid=1389373492&sr=8-8&keywords=katemarie+collins

Amazon – Kindle/Looking At The Light: http://www.amazon.com/Looking-The-Light-KateMarie-Collins-ebook/dp/B00HJY0GRM/ref=sr_1_6?ie=UTF8&qid=1389373492&sr=8-6&keywords=katemarie+collins

Amazon – Kindle/A Stab at the Dark: http://www.amazon.com/A-Stab-At-The-Dark-ebook/dp/B00HJYZAXM/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1389373492&sr=8-7&keywords=katemarie+collins

 Amazon – Paperback/Daughter of Hauk:  http://www.amazon.com/Daughter-Of-Hauk-KateMarie-Collins/dp/1475230338/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1335468615&sr=8-1

 Amazon – Paperback/Mark of the Successor: http://www.amazon.com/Mark-Successor-KateMarie-Collins/dp/1491298162/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1377528453&sr=1-1&keywords=mark+of+the+successor

 Amazon – Paperback/Son of Corse: http://www.amazon.com/Son-Corse-Raven-Chronicles-Volume/dp/1492837970/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1382546541&sr=8-1&keywords=Son+of+Corse

 Audio Book: http://www.amazon.com/Daughter-Hauk-Raven-Chronicles-Book/dp/B00BK4RB8O/ref=sr_1_2?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1361631472&sr=1-2&keywords=daughter+of+hauk

 Amazon – Kindle/Fin’s Magic: http://www.amazon.com/Fins-Magic-Amari-KateMarie-Collins-ebook/dp/B00J7X1DQG/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1396230750&sr=1-1&keywords=fin%27s+magic

 Barnes & Noble – Nook/Fin’s Magic: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/fins-magic-katemarie-collins/1118958910?ean=2940149453931

Smashwords – Fin’s Magic (multiple platforms): http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/420044

Twitter:  @DaughterHauk

FB:  http://www.facebook.com/pages/KateMarie-Collins/217255151699492

Blog:  http://www.katemariecollins.wordpress.com

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Yes, you read that title right. Vacation happened! It’s why I wasn’t posting on Monday last week. Miss me? LOL

We had a great time. Went towards the San Francisco area. Took in a baseball game, walked Fisherman’s Wharf, drove down Lombard Street, and took a boat tour of the bay. It was warm and sunny, something we miss out on here in Seattle Suburbia. Don’t get me wrong, we DO get to see the sun. After a long, gray winter, however…it was good to soak up some natural vitamin D.

The other nice thing about the break is that it made me forget about everything that ‘had’ to get done that typically gets in the way of my writing. Work happens every day. And I LOVE my job. It’s the other stuff (dishes, laundry, etc) that I tend to put higher on the list of my must do list. They take priority over writing, and they shouldn’t.

So, I’m back at work today. Finally caught up on my emails and have a good sense of what will be done tomorrow and the rest of the week. Writing will happen soon, as well. I’ve got the last book in the Raven Chronicles to finish up, plus have the edges of a new Amari book floating about in my mind.

It’s a toss up which one will be written first. Which one do you think? Finishing up Arwenna’s tale, or letting everyone know where Alaric comes from?


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