Fancy Being The Author in the Spotlight?

light-67324_640PLEASE READ THE UPDATE AT THE END OF THIS BLOG POST!

This week, I’ve decided to revive the ‘Author Spotlight’ feature which I started on my blog a while back. When I first started it, it was a chance for debut authors to reveal the covers of their debut novels to the readers of my blog and to post an excerpt as well. I had a couple of guest authors but after that, it fizzled out a bit and so I’m going to change the purpose of the feature a little.

In future, it will be mostly for self-published authors or for those authors published by small presses to highlight their newest release. That doesn’t exclude anyone who doesn’t fall into those categories, it’s just that I feel that they might need more help. I would like to include the following as a minimum:

  • A picture of your cover.
  • Your bio.
  • An excerpt from your forthcoming novel.
  • Your buying links.

I would be more than happy to interview you as well if you’d like but we can discuss that in more detail once you make contact with me. Alternatively, you could write a guest post for me on a subject that we both feel might be of interest to my readers. I would be very interested to discuss unusual settings and musical connections, of course!

I propose having one of these features fortnightly at the moment starting on May 11th. I will not be running the feature in August though. I am planning to revamp my website this year and so I’d like to get this feature going now before I make some changes. The changes I’m planning revolve around the fact that I don’t feel the need to blog about every aspect of my publishing journey now, although I will of course keep those posts for readers to refer to in the future. I think it’s time to move on to a new phase for the website now that my second novel is well on its way.

I want to be able to help other authors gain some more visibility by featuring them on my blog in the same way that I have been lucky enough to be featured on other authors’ blogs. Many of my author friends have books coming out in the near future and they’re looking for blogs to host them as they make themselves known to readers. In fact, it was hearing one author’s request for blog visits that made me remember that this was something I’d tried to do in the past and wanted to revive.

If you think this would be of interest to you, please leave me a message in the comments below and I will get back to you to talk about it in more detail and to schedule a date. I look forward to hearing from you and would be grateful if you would share this with your writing friends if you think it might be of interest to them. Thanks for reading, as always. Have a good writing and reading week 🙂

PLEASE NOTE THAT I AM NOW BOOKED UP UNTIL THE END OF SEPTEMBER! IF I HAVE ALREADY REPLIED TO YOU, I WILL TRY AND SQUEEZE YOU IN BUT WOULD BE GRATEFUL IF YOU COULD GET BACK TO ME AS SOON AS POSSIBLE. OTHERWISE, YOUR FEATURE WILL NOW BE FROM OCTOBER ONWARDS. THANK YOU 🙂

Time to reveal my cover and book trailer!

The time has finally come – I have finished my final and I mean, FINAL read-through of ‘From Here to Nashville,’ my debut novel. It is now ready to go to the proofreader and so, I feel confident enough to let the world (that means you, dear readers) see my new cover for the book. Drum roll, if you please…

And here it is! I am so pdfw-js-fhtn-cover-smallleased with the cover that Design for Writers created for me and I have had some good early feedback from subscribers to my newsletter who had a sneak peek of the book cover last Tuesday before anyone else. Sending out my newsletter was an interesting challenge but it seemed to be successful because by the following day, I had more than double the number of original subscribers. If you’d like to sign up to my newsletter, here’s the link. I use Mailchimp for my newsletters and if you want to have a go at setting it all up for yourself, here’s a post I wrote about it when I first tried it out.

I also managed to include the book trailer I have been working on in the newsletter. I created it using a website called Stupeflix, although I tried out a number of others beforehand, like Animoto and Vimeo. It took a long time to find suitable photos for it to go with the text I had written but once I’d done that, it was relatively easy. I found the music on a royalty free music site, called Bensound. Then it was just a question of putting it all together. If I had lots more time, I would probably still tweak a few things but I’m mostly happy with it. Once it was complete, I uploaded it to YouTube and kept it as ‘unlisted’ until all my subscribers had had the chance to watch it. It is now public so anyone can see it but here’s the video below if you’d like to watch it now. I’d love to know what you think about it so do leave me a comment below.

I have also started uploading my details to the Kindle Direct Publishing page so that I can be as close to ready for my launch as possible when FHTN comes back from the proofreader. This has led me to discover the delights of providing tax information as a non-US publisher. You may not be aware if you live in the UK that if you want to publish your ebook to Amazon and receive your full royalty payments, you will have to prove to the IRS that you are eligible for the waiver of the 30% tax rate in the US and would prefer to pay tax at the UK 20% tax rate instead. This may take some time so for the moment, I will have to pay tax at the 30% rate!

I would like to make my book available for pre-order so I put in the date I’m aiming for as my publication day and it then said that I have to upload my finished book by ten days before the publication day. That wouldn’t leave me very long after I get it back from the proofreader. I think I could upload a draft version but I’m scared about mixing them up! So this one may be a case of having to wait and see.

So, what will I do next? Well, I have signed up to the Romantic Novelists’ Association’s New Writers’ Scheme again and I would like to submit my second book this year. The first draft is at 80,000 words but most of these are not right! I keep adding to my outline in Scrivener how I want the story to go but now I have to really knuckle down and get the actual story right, as well as finished. It will only be the very first draft that I’m able to submit if I can manage all that. Still, you have to start somewhere and at least I have something to go with. I will try and finish the outline over the next couple of weeks at least but then I’ll have to get back to FHTN and its publication and marketing. No peace for the wicked, as they say 😉

Thanks for reading, as always and I would love to hear your comments on my book cover and my book trailer 🙂

 

 

My Piece of Sky

DSCN3409A long, long time ago, I sat down at this computer to start writing a story. The date was Tuesday, April 2nd, 2013 to be precise and fuelled by the TV programme ‘Nashville,’ I’d come up with an idea for my own story. I had no idea whether I would get to the end of the story or not at that point, I just wanted to write it all down before I forgot it! 😉 Today, 642 days later, I’m about done with my story and I’m just a few weeks away from self-publishing my first novel as an ebook in the first instance, followed shortly after by a paperback version.

I have spent a fair bit of time over the holidays (understatement of the year!) wrestling with formatting my novel in Scrivener, accompanied by the brilliant book ‘Scrivener for Dummies’ by Gwen Hernandez. It is now formatted to my satisfaction, I think (eek!) I have also worked my way through my own and my beta readers’ edits and got to the end of them without doing myself an injury. Finally, I contacted my proofreader to see if it would be possible to send it to her a bit earlier than we had planned. Her answer to this was yes and all of this means that I can look at a publication date of sometime during the week of the 16th February, 2015 which will be half-term week for me and therefore, a bit easier to manage. As it can take a few days for your book to upload to Amazon though, I’ll probably aim for a ‘soft’ launch in the week before to deal with any major upsets before the proper publication day.

My next task then is to send out my first newsletter. I have already started designing this and it will include my Cover Reveal and also the Book Trailer I’ve been working on. If you want to see both of these before anyone else, don’t forget to SIGN UP to my newsletter! All you have to do is click on the link. I will be doing a blog post soon about how I made the book trailer as well.

The next major thing to think about is marketing: yes or no? I have taken part in some giveaways myself run by authors and I even tried running one a while ago on my Facebook page but there wasn’t much take up. Similarly, although I have enjoyed ‘attending’ a number of Facebook launch parties, the attendees always seem to be other writers so I’m not sure how useful they are in terms of sales to new readers. Finally, there’s the issue of book blog tours. I know of many lovely people running these but I have no idea how useful they are to writers. Obviously, we all want to make our book stand out in a veritable ocean of others out there. So, if you have any advice on this topic, I’d love to hear from you in the comments. Some of the more experienced self-publishers believe that the best marketing is to get on with your second book and don’t worry, I fully intend to do that! I feel that some other marketing is necessary though and should be fun.

This is where I’m at for the start of 2015 then, folks. Thank you for accompanying me along the path so far. I hope you’ll keep on reading over the next few weeks and holding my hand as I edge closer to publication. Thank you for reading and supporting me with your advice and I look forward to reading your comments 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

© Julie Stock and My Writing Life, 2013 – 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Julie Stock and My Writing Life with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

 

Cover Reveal for ‘Fractured Immortal’ by debut author, E. L. Wicker

light-67324_640Welcome to this new feature on my blog where I focus the spotlight on a cover reveal for a debut author. If you are a new author and would be interested in being in the spotlight with the cover of your first novel, please do get in touch with me.

 

 


Today, it’s the turn of author, E.L. Wicker.

A weaver of words from a young age, I first started writing when we were given an assignment to do so in school. I can remember being called up to the teacher as she asked me (looking slightly annoyed) “What’s this?” I can’t remember the story but I do remember one of the characters had a stutter and so I explained that to the teacher and she let me go back to my desk. I guess six year olds didn’t write stutters into their work. Well, I did. And I haven’t looked back since.

Of course, over the years I wrote many more, none of which I finished, until last year when I read a book and loved it so much that I wanted to be able to do the same – write a book that someone out there would love. So I did. Whether it is loved by one or many remains to be seen, but I did it and I am so happy I did.

It opened the floodgates to so many, many more words. And while I am busy working on ‘Finding Immortal’ the follow up to ‘Fractured Immortal’ I am also writing another book. I just can’t seem to stop.

I love to talk to people, so if you ever have something you want to say, please do but be warned, it’s very difficult to get me to shut up again 🙂

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FRI Fractured Immortal is a New Adult Supernatural Romance. Packed full of action, friendship, jealousy, romance and a few steamy scenes to boot.

In 1810, an army of vampires tore through Bearwood on a terrifying rampage of death and destruction. Turned to a vampire that night, Ilia Rose fled the many painful memories soon after, walking the Earth for two centuries to seek revenge on army leader, Sol. When Ilia learns he has returned to her hometown, she follows. But the reason for his reappearance puts her life in further danger, and an unwelcome revelation about Sol’s ally, Nathaniel, means Ilia and Nathaniel must unite to defeat the enemy.

Thus Ilia begins a gut-wrenching battle to save her life and the lives of her friends, a battle which not everyone will survive.

A vampire tale like none other, love, pain, devastation and revenge, all weave together to create the first in a dark and unmissable new adult series.

EXCERPT

old_paper_texture_by_olebern-d1wdu38

Pre-order Fractured Immortal now! Release date is 21st December, 2014:

Amazon UK

Amazon US

Giveaway!

Enter the giveaway to receive a copy of Fractured Immortal for your Kindle. (Kindle only)

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© Julie Stock and My Writing Life, 2013 – 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Julie Stock and My Writing Life with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

 

Cover Reveal for ‘Letting in Light’ by debut author, Emma Davies

light-67324_640Welcome to this new feature on my blog where I focus the spotlight on a cover reveal for a debut author. If you are a new author and would be interested in being in the spotlight with the cover of your first novel, please do get in touch with me.

 

 

 

Today, it’s the turn of author, Emma Davies.

I read her book, ‘Letting in Light’ recently and really enjoyed it and I think you will too.

Here’s the blurb:

‘Rowan Hill. Come first out of curiosity, explore as a guest, return as a friend. 

When Ellie arrives at Rowan Hill all she wants is peace and quiet and a place to lick her wounds, but fate it would seem has other things in mind for her. 

Firstly there’s Will, who has a reputation for being a humourless grumpy loner; things would be perfect if everyone would just leave him and his estate alone. Is he just plain grumpy, or is it the big fat secret he’s keeping that makes him act the way he does? 

Then there’s Finn, who’s drop dead gorgeous, but who ran away from his past. He’s now planning a return home to Rowan Hill, and although he knows Will’s secret, he’s not about to tell Ellie. Is it loyalty to his brother that keeps him quiet, or perhaps it’s just that he has a few secrets of his own? 

The perfect solution for all of them is staring Ellie in the face, trouble is she’s been accused of meddling before. Her vision for Rowan Hill could be just what everyone needs, so should she follow her heart or her head? 

As Ellie puts her plans to save Rowan Hill into action, romance and friendships blossom, however the complications of the past are never far away, and a shocking revelation soon threatens their hopes for the future. Suddenly the beliefs they once held true become the biggest obstacle they have to overcome. Will Ellie find the courage to learn from the truth and finally let a little light into all their lives. 

After all, life, like art, is all about perception, and sometimes it just depends on your point of view….’

If you’d like to buy it, it’s a snip at 99p at the moment. Here’s the link: http://amzn.to/ZZ0GcZ

You can find out more about Emma on Twitter here and on Goodreads here and on her website here.

Letting in Light new cover

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

© Julie Stock and My Writing Life, 2013 – 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Julie Stock and My Writing Life with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.