Friday, December 16, 2011
I'm happy to be participating in the Mistletoe Madness Blog Hop over the next week with some awesome authors, who you will find listed below. To celebrate the holiday season, we're all in a very giving mood. I encourage you to hop on over using the links on this post to see what prizes are available from the different authors, cause holy smokes, there are a lot of them! You can win some free books, eBooks and gift cards, to name a few things.
I'm in a giving mood too and would love to reward one deserving person with a special gift this Christmas. Want to enter my contest to win? Simple. Just post a comment below telling me what your favorite holiday book or movie is, and I'll randomly select one commenter to win a $15 gift card to Amazon.com. Please include your e-mail address somewhere in the post so I can notify you if you win.
The link to the entry form for the blog hop GRAND PRIZE (a Nook Color pre-loaded with books from the sponsor authors):
Good luck, and happy holidays!
Monday, December 12, 2011
Would you believe that "Cry Wolf" was inspired by a real urban legend? Well, it was. There are modern day sightings of werewolf-like creatures in the United States, and cryptozoologists (researchers who investigate unknown animals) often refer to them as Dogmen. Perhaps the most famous case is called the Beast of Bray Road. Interested in learning more? I'm not usually one to promote Wikipedia because it's not always accurate, but after reading books and doing research on the topic, I give two thumbs up to Wikipedia's page on the Beast of Bray Road.
Check it out. Some fun and creepy reading there.
As the holidays near, I hope you'll check back here. I'll be announcing some giveaways I'm participating in, and whoa boy, there are some goodies. Details coming soon!
Wednesday, November 23, 2011
I compiled a mental list that I figured I would share with the rest of you. You know Jeff Foxworthy's catch phrase "You might be a redneck if..." followed by some funny reason you're probably a redneck? Well, I came up with my own "You might be an author if..." reasons.
You might be an author if...
- You find yourself checking (fill in the blank - Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes & Noble or all of the above) at least 10,000 times a day to see if anyone new has posted a review or rating of your latest book. Nevermind that you checked 30 seconds ago. 30 seconds is plenty of time for someone new to post a new review/rating!
- It doesn't matter where you go - the grocery store, an elementary school, CHURCH! -- you have to resist the urge to fall to your knees and beg everyone around you to please, for the love of all that is holy, please buy your book! Your cat/dog/child really needs to eat.
- You find yourself checking your e-mail inbox every 5 to 10 minutes to see if a Google alert about a new review for your book has popped in, or if a book reviewer has responded to your request to review your book, or if Steven Spielburg has contacted you about securing the film rights to your book (hey, it could happen!).
- You find yourself checking your actual mailbox multiple times a day (before your mailman ever comes) because you're waiting on a query response from that certain book editor/agent concerning that partial/full submission of your next manuscript. You keep thinking, "It's been 8 weeks already! Why the hell hasn't he/she responded yet?!?"
- You only get about two hours sleep before you have to be at your full-time job because, dammit, your characters were feeding you great information and you had no choice but to stay up all right drinking coffee to get it all into a Word document.
- The next day, you realize your characters fed you crappy information, and you delete the before-mentioned Word document and start all over again.
- You have to resist the urge to argue with bad reviews about your book on Amazon/Goodreads/Barnes & Noble. What do they mean, they hated your heroine? I mean, seriously?!
- You start wondering if you need therapy or medication because you've become so neurotic over your book's sales or reviews, and because you do everything listed above - and then some!
Friday, November 11, 2011
I don’t hide the fact that I am currently obsessed with two YA series that are also both (or will be) movie series too. Of course I’m talking about “The Hunger Games” and “Twilight.”
I know what you’re probably thinking. But Angie, you’re a romance writer, not a YA author! I know. I know. Believe me, I know. I used to only read strictly romance or mainstream novels until I went and saw the first “Twilight” movie with my niece and nephew (teens at the time). It was cheesy. It was overly dramatic. It was full of face shots that held waaay too long on the actors who wore waaay too much pasty makeup. I absolutely loved it! So I ran out, got the books and devoured them in record time. It took me longer to catch onto “The Hunger Games” because — let’s be honest — the premise sounds godawful, doesn’t it? Kids being forced to kill kids. Who wants to read that?!? Well, me, apparently, cause I finally read it on recommendation and LOVED it. Suzanne Collins did a fantastic job with that series. Don’t let the morbid premise deter you.
Why do I mention these things? Because my giddy little fangirl heart is all aflutter with excitement and can hardly stand to wait for next week to get here. First, Good Morning America will premiere the full-length trailer for “The Hunger Games” movie on Monday. Squee! Second, “Breaking Dawn Part 1” — my favorite book in the series, I might add — hits theaters midnight Thursday/Friday a.m. Squee! Squee!
I know I should probably be participating in NaNoWriMo along with so many of my fellow authors, but I’m too busy setting my VCR (yes, I still own a VCR — so what?) and spending all my free time channel surfing for interviews with the Twilight cast.
Priorities, people. What can I say?
Monday, October 31, 2011
It's also Halloween, and I hope everyone has a safe and fun holiday! I was walking around a Halloween Express the other day, and I saw this creepy Halloween decoration. What struck me about it was that it reminded me of the Woodbine Werewolf I imagined when writing this story.
See why this story would make a good Halloween read?
Mwahahahaha! Happy Halloween!
Saturday, October 29, 2011
Here's a complete list of contests and blog posts so far. If you have a few minutes to check it out or want to enter to win a free copy of my book, I would really appreciate your time.
Win a $10 Amazon gift card and a copy of CRY WOLF at Katie Reus' blog. To enter, just leave a comment:
Win a copy of CRY WOLF at Rage, Sex and Teddy Bears, which also provided a review of my book:
Win a copy of CRY WOLF at Jen's Bookshelf, where I received a 5 out of 5 rating for CRY WOLF:
Win a copy of CRY WOLF and read my Q&A at Fierce Romance (Note: Contest has ended):
I'll update this list as more giveaways/posts are added. Thanks again, and good luck!
Friday, October 28, 2011
On the off chance people care, I thought I'd post a little about myself...or more specifically, my interests outside of writing. Well, that's a funny story, because I always combine my passions with writing. I actually have two other blogs that have become sorely neglected in recent months. One is "Confessions of a fangirl" where I have spent years blogging about my favorite shows (including Supernatural) and comic books and such. If you want to see how geeky I am (and how scary my mind can be), feel free to wander over and check it out.
I have also been collecting celebrity autographs since I was in middle school. It's more than a hobby. It's a passion! I love the challenge of seeing just who I can get a response from through the mail, and occasionally, in person. My collection includes Jimmy Stewart, Shirley Temple Black, Jennifer Lawrence, and (yes I have both through the mail and in-person sigs from) my former future husband Jensen Ackles. That blog gets a lot of traffic, so if you're interested, you can check that one out too.
Yes, I'm a blogging fool.
Wednesday, October 26, 2011
My guest post at the Here Be Magic blog is now up and just begging for comments. I'm not kidding. Please go comment, even if it's to call me a big fat weirdo, cause that post is entertaining nothing but crickets right now. It's kind of sad, really.
Later today, my friend Esmerelda Bishop (well, we're in the same critique group anyway) will be kind enough to host a Q&A with me at the Fierce Romance blog.
Jen's Bookshelf is also holding a contest to give away a copy of CRY WOLF this week at her blog, with my blessing. Head on over and enter to win it or the audiobook. Winner's choice. And check out some of Jen's reviews while you're over there.
And don't forget to check out fellow author Katie Reus's website, where she's currently hosting a slew of authors (including yours truly) to celebrate a month-long Monster Mashup. My post, and a contest, goes live this weekend. Check it out and enter to win some goodies.
Wednesday, October 19, 2011
First of all, if you’re an author and you’re reading this, I’m sorry if I just offended you by calling you, me and JK Rowling weirdos in this blog title. But come on. You gotta admit it’s probably true — right? I mean, some of us love being in the spotlight. Some of us hate it. Some of us take offense at reviews. Some of us don't.
I had this epiphany today at lunch when I was talking about my book with my good friend and co-worker — I’ll call her Candy to protect her identity.
“I got two more reviews,” I told her happily. “I got a 3 out of 5 on one and a 4.5 out of 5 on the other.”
“That’s pretty good,” she said.
“Yeah, well, the 3 out of 5 reviewer said she liked the first two-thirds of the book, but then it went downhill from there. It’s weird because a lot of people have said the opposite. I’m just confused.” I sighed.
Candy — God bless her — gave me a mini pep talk that led to a discussion about a friend of ours who also writes books — I’ll refer to him as Bob to protect his identity. He’d had a awesome fantasy series published a few years ago with a publisher that has since gone out of business, and when he was laid off a few months ago, he self-published his next novel. Now, I know Candy loved his fantasy series and she really liked his new story too, but she had some issues with his newest book. Mainly some gratuitous sex. She said she told him the truth about that -- that the book would have been better without the explicit sex.
Well, he asked Candy to go on Amazon and give him a review to try and boost his sales.
Gasp! This idea horrified me! I would never ask someone I know to give me a review. In fact, it's hard for me not to ask people I know NOT to read my book because it creeps me out, imagining them inside my head that way. Strangers, okay, but people I know?! I could not ask them to review my book. Never! Well, okay, so maybe if a psycho killer were holding a knife to my cat’s throat and ordered me to do it then yes, yes, I would. But I would also really hope I don't know any psycho killers who would do that to me. Anyway.
“Well, did you give him a review?” I asked.
“Of course,” she said. It turns out he'd asked some other friends to give him reviews too.
As I was listening to this, I didn’t grab my chest and gasp for breath in horror — but I wanted to. But I am weird like that. I mean, the mere idea of asking a friend to review my book...uh uh. Can't do it. Call me Queen Weirdo. I don't care.
I can’t really judge Bob for what he did though. Books are a tough business. Yeah, I said it. BUSINESS. Naturally, we’d all love to write for the fun of it, but the reality is, we all have bills to pay, which means we have editors and publishers to impress, along with multitudes of readers to tempt into buying our books.
And reviews are a funny thing too. I actually appreciate the comments that come along with them because they’re helping me to figure out where my weaknesses are. I'm not sure I would trust anyone who knows me to be honest though. A certain book — you know, the one I’m working on now — has changed a little since I started it because I realize now I have a tendency to do certain things that shall remain between me and my computer’s DELETE button. Ehhh-hmmm.
So, please, if you read my book and are kind enough to give me a review, be honest. I might cry a little at first. I might even pound my head against the wall if it’s really negative, but I have a thick head so it’s okay.
And I’d probably hug you if I could, just knowing you read my book. I won’t, cause that would be silly, but still. You read my book, so thank you.And thank you, hopefully, for helping me to become a better writer.
Tuesday, October 11, 2011
Whew, where does the time go? Can you believe there’s only two and a half weeks before my book will be released? I’ve posted a list of blog tour stops I’ll be making in the next few weeks, so feel free to stop by and give a shout out. Plus, there will giveaways! After all, I figure anyone who puts up with my quirkiness deserves the chance to win a little something.
In the meantime, the reviews for “Cry Wolf” are starting to trickle in, and (thank you, God!) folks have been largely positive. Some people have LOVED it and some people have rated it average on Goodreads, but I’m grateful no one has yet given me a 2, 1, or (gasp!) a zero. I’m sure those will come — after all, you can’t please everyone — but I’ve been too busy to really think much about it. I suppose there’s nothing better to cure neurosis than a little bit of preoccupation with something else.
I’m working on my own book trailer and hope to get that up soon. I don’t expect it to do much in the way garnering me readers, but as a wannabe, amateur filmmaker, I simply could not let the opportunity pass to dabble around with it. I’m having fun, anyway.
I’m thisclose to cutting out pictures of my book cover characters, attaching them to Popsicle sticks and using them to act out certain scenes. Or — too much? I don’t want people to think I’m not taking this serious enough, but that’s how my mind works. I always wanna go for the funny. And wouldn’t that be hilarious? I giggle just thinking about it.
I’m sure I could find a cheap wolf hand puppet at Toys R Us, after all…
Thursday, September 29, 2011
It is hard to believe October is almost here, or that “Cry Wolf” will released in 32 days (not that I’m counting or anything).
I’m knee deep in promo stuff, and I’m also about three chapters away from finishing my next manuscript — and why yes, it’s also about werewolves, sort of. I’m starting to realize I can’t approach werewolves the way most romance authors do — or at least, none that I’ve read. For example, I put my profound love for wolves as animals to good use when I was plotting “Cry Wolf” and approached the werewolf subplot from a cryptozoology standpoint. Cryptozoology, in case you’re not familiar, is the scientific study of unknown animals — Bigfoot, the Loch Ness Monster, etc. I had a blast doing it too! If I were independently wealthy, I might find a Bigfoot or lake monster hunt and go on it! But that probably won’t surprise anyone who knows me because, well, I’m weird like that. I had some critique partners early one who asked me why I didn’t go the traditional woman-falls-in-love-with-a-tortured-werewolf route, and the truth is, I was having way too much fun writing it my way.
Hmmm. Maybe that’s one reason it took me so long to get this story published.
Anyway, I’m writing another story with werewolves attached — I’m sorry, I just can’t seem to help it — and it’s veering away from the norm too. And as I plan out my promotional strategy for "Cry Wolf" while thinking ahead to my next story, I've decided whether my books are a hit or a flop, I want to donate some of the proceeds from it to charity. But which charity? There are three I already support when I'm able - breast cancer research, animal welfare and the endangered wildlife fund.
I’ve read countless books on wolf sociology and biology and the such that keeps seeping into my new plot. In college, I applied for an internship to spend six months at the Wolf Education Research Center in Oregon. I’ve never visited the center, but I wanted to — very badly — when I was younger. The idea of pitching a tent and observing wolves up close for scientific study appealed to me more back in those days than writing, filmmaking or, shoot, probably eating — three things I love to do now.
Point is, I've decided I will donate a portion of my first month's proceeds to the Wolf Education Research Center. Most likely, I'll donate to a different charity each month as my book sells. Check back here to see which charity I'll be donating to - and which you can help me donate to by buying my book!
In the meantime, I’m trying to tell myself my next story can’t be about wolves in any shape, form or fashion. That sucks, cause I already have an idea for a story…and guess what? There’s a werewolf involved. Go figure.
It’s been a while since I’ve been able to update — I blame my pesky little day job this time, but I wanted to thank everyone who voted for me in Maggie Shayne’s video contest. I placed second! I didn’t win the Kindle, but I did win her complete series in e-book — so naturally I had to go straight to Amazon and buy a Kindle so I could read them. So far I’m loving it. So many books, so little time to read them…
Check out Maggie Shayne's final book in the Wings in the Night series, available for pre-order on Amazon.com.