Archive for July, 2015
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Monday, July 13th, 2015
One More Week!! After all this time, worry and work, I can’t believe CAGED MAGIC is almost here.
Kindle / iBooks / Nook / Kobo / Google Play
I spent most of this weekend working on blogs and interviews for the two books (Caged Magic releases 7/20 and Exposing the Heiress releases 8/4). One of the interview questions I struggle with is: “Tell us about yourself.” Umm, I’m not that interesting. I realize I probably think that because I’m around myself all the time and therefore, immune to my charm (SHUT UP, WIZARD! I CAN SO BE CHARMING IF I WANT TO…AND I’M TIPSY.) Seriously, Wizard’s on the last few chapters of Caged Magic, so lets not interrupt him okay? He already snapped at me once for bugging him while reading. Which is pretty ironic since he chatters to me all the freaking time while I’m reading, but whatever…
What was I saying?
Oh right…so I’m tempted to make stuff up about myself to sound more interesting. Here’s a few ideas I could lead with:
–Since I was never actually convicted of the crime…
–I’d love to tell you but being in Witness Protection means I’m forbidden.
–After I woke up from the coma, I couldn’t remember who I was. Do you know me? What’s my name? And also, where’s my dog?
–If I tell you, the people in my head will hear…
–I see dead people (because come on, who hasn’t wanted to say that?)
But of course, I do none of these things because bloggers and readers are asking sincere questions, and I truly want to hang out and chat with them. I just would love to share more interesting stuff about me. Although, there was the time a neighbor was stabbed right in front of my apartment seconds after I went inside (true story, actually) but that’s pretty hard to work into “Hi I’m Jen, I write books, and also my neighbor once saved my life…” Somehow that just sounds awkward and a little creepy, LOL!
So how was your weekend?
Friday, July 10th, 2015
Who else is happy it’s Friday?
I’m in a working-light mode. I am working but not at the frantic pace I was for most of the year, so it’s a nice breather for me. I’ve accepted that I’m not going to really start a new book until after I get back from N.Y. Just editing first four Wing Slayer Hunter book files, writing promo blogs, answering interview questions and trying to keep up.
Oh! And Wizard is reading CAGED MAGIC. I had the print proof copy sitting around, and he picked it up and started reading yesterday. He was at the half way point this morning when a sprinkler pipe sprung a leak so he had to put the book down. For the past 24 hours I’ve been getting random comments like:
“How is Risa going to get out of this lie?”
“What about the baby? What happens when Linc finds out the truth?”
“I hope Ram and Ginny ** again.” (I had to bleep that word — let’s just say that Wizard was blunt. And worried about Ram and Ginny — who have small point-of-view scenes in CAGED MAGIC.)
“Shield witches? Witch hunters? Demons, spawns and angels? How do you come up with this stuff? Should I be worried?” (He plots a lot of this with me, but seeing it in the context of the story is vastly different.)
“Get out of my reading room! Can’t you see I’m busy?” (I pointed out that “This isn’t your reading room, dude, THIS IS MY UPSTAIRS OFFICE!” To which Wizard replied, “You were on the phone, it’s my reading room now. Go away.”)
And so much more. Just random, off the cuff comments. But one thing I’m happy about is that Wizard is following the book with no problems. He only read Blood Magic years ago so that likely means those who haven’t read the series won’t be too lost. Also, Wizard isn’t a reader and he seems pretty hooked.
Today I’m hoping to find a couple little things I need for my NY trip, and then I’m meeting Biker Witch (my sister) for coffee. I’m also writing more blogs, more interviews, trying to stay on top of it all. Nothing exciting on tap this weekend.
How about you guys? What are your weekend plans?
Wednesday, July 8th, 2015
Biker Witch (my sister) has thrown down a bet. If I win the Rita for HER TEMPORARY HERO I have to buy her a Starbucks coffee. LOLOL!! I’m totally going to win and she has to buy me a Starbucks! And the prices at Starbucks just went up, so I’m going to order something very expensive and enjoy it immensely. That will teach her to torment with texts like, “…after you have to get up and speak in front of thousands of people when you win…”
Not going to happen. And I will get a free Starbucks coffee out of it! I’ll take pictures when I collect my winnings and share with you all
But now let’s get to Wednesday Worthy.
It’s David Gandy! (Photo from http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2013/08/13/david-gandy-wheyhey-icecream_n_3748664.html ) So what do you think? Is Gandy worthy?
Monday, July 6th, 2015
Happy Monday! Hope everyone who celebrated Independence Day in the U.S. had a great time. We stayed home and really enjoyed it. I got some real downtime in this weekend.
I’m also working on promo blogs for the two blog tours and started thinking about some of the best advice I’ve gotten over the years. I wanted to share these four with you guys (although they may be repeated in my blog tours ):
1) No one will believe in you until you believe in yourself. This was before I was published and I was whining to a friend about people not taking me seriously as a writer and wondering if I would ever make it. My friend looked me dead in the eye and said, “No one will believe in you until you believe in yourself.” That was a light bulb moment for me. Why was I looking elsewhere for validation? I started treating myself as pursuing a professional writing career, not a hobbyist. And I quit looking for validation from everyone else. Instead of talking about my career goals, I focused on believing in myself and achieving them. Believing in myself help me focus on my goals, and once we do that, we begin achieving our goals.
2) The only one standing in your way is you. I believe this was way back when I decided to try to write paranormal and I was scared, throwing out excuses. One of my writer friends, Marianne Donley, told me the I was the only one standing in my way and it stuck. It’s very much like the time I was talking to my oldest son about colleges. I was helping him fill out paperwork for the state university, while he was telling me his high school councilors told him he “should be going to an Ivy League school.” He absolutely he had the grades, intelligence and drive. But this was a life lesson. His dad and I had clear goals about what we wanted to teach them, so I explained, “We are not paying for college. We will help, and the harder you work to make things happen for yourself, the more we will help. But if you think an Ivy League school is the way to go, then you go out and make it happen. Don’t ever let your dad and I stand in your way. Ever. If you want it, you can make it happen.” Oldest son has done well — it doesn’t matter what path he chose, but he made his life happen and is very successful now. This is exactly what Marianne meant — the only one standing in your way is you. If you want it, then you work your butt off, as hard and long as it takes, to make it happen. No excuses.
3) Never tone down one character to match the other. This was advice from Laura Wright. It was when I was revising a book, maybe Blood Magic, and the editor felt my hero was overshadowing my heroine. My editor suggested I “tone down” the hero. Laura and I were discussing the revisions and I told her that. Her response was NO, NO, NO and NO. Never water down a character (unless he’s an offensive jerk), but bring the heroine up to match your hero. I did that and it worked. It was harder than just toning down the hero, but it made for a much better book. A stronger heroine to meet a powerful hero automatically creates more conflict.
4) If a scene isn’t working, even if that scene is “gold,” dump it. Cut it. Get rid of it! This one is my advice to myself and one I’ve repeated over and over, especially in the last few years It just happened in Caged Magic. I had a scene of Linc and Risa spending some time together, laughing and building a rocket. My reasoning was trying to give the two characters a lighter-falling-in-love moment in a darker book, and at the same time, reveal more about the characters. It totally worked, except for one thing — Risa’s beloved baby was missing and there she is laughing, playing, flirting and falling in love while her godchild is out there in the hands of a demon spawn. The scene was well written (my editor said), but it didn’t belong in this book where it clashed with Risa’s internal and external motivations. And it was going to make any mother out there pissed at Risa. My editor suggested I keep the scene, but tone down some of the fun and cast more of a shadow of worry over it. To quote Laura, NO NO NO and NO. That scene belonged in a fun contemporary book not a dark paranormal. If I’d tweaked it, I would have been forcing a square peg into a round hole. Instead, I kept the key dialogue in the scene that revealed character and brutally cut the rest. Then I took the opportunity to write a new action scene where the two of them are trying to find the baby, and threaded in the dialogue. It made a huge difference in the book, and showcased Risa in a much better light. And it ended up showing them connecting on a deeper level than my original scene. Don’t be afraid to dump a scene and take the opportunity to up your game in the book. Yeah, I had to put some serious time and sweat into doing it, but the story improved dramatically.
So there’s some of my favorite advice to writers.
Now it’s your turn. If you’d like to share your advice or thoughts, I’d love to hear it. Or tell me if you had a good weekend, I always lover to hear what you guys are up to.
Friday, July 3rd, 2015
I can’t believe I leave for New York in 19 days! Where is time going? I’m trying to get all my promo work done before hand since I’ll be leaving two days after Caged Magic releases, then Exposing the Heiress will release less than ten days after I return. It’ll be a whirlwind, but it’s fine. The bummer is I haven’t started writing a new book yet, but that’s just part of the business.
I am bugging Wizard for a dog (only halfheartedly, because we both have mixed feelings), but that ended up in a bet dirty, sexy bet involving chocolate chips and a video. We then got into heated negotiations on the terms of the bet and dissolved into manic laughter before we could actually do anything too wild or crazy. Seriously, we really should have adult supervision. Things have only gotten WORSE since Wizard retired. We are a bad influence on young minds or puppies…just saying…
Anyway, let’s move on, shall we? It’s a holiday weekend–July 4th–here in the states. Wizard and I are staying home, probably making some tri-tip steak, and hanging out by the pool. See? Sometimes we can act like adults. I’m also thinking I will finally break down and make him brownies–if he makes me a margarita, and once margaritas are flowing, well…then I can’t promise we’ll act like adults…
What are your plans this weekend?
Wednesday, July 1st, 2015
It’s so cool to get some advanced feedback on CAGED MAGIC and it’s good! Things like this one on Goodreads:
I rarely give 5 stars to books, I always give 4 stars because on those books there is always something missing. But with this one, I couldn’t find a reason to not give this book less than a 5, if there was a number higher than a 5, I would give it in a heartbeat, because this book had everything.
I know, I sound like Sally Field at the Oscars, “You like me, you really like me!” LOLOL!! Of course, not every reader will feel the same way, but this is a huge relief and happy dance for me. Since only my editor, copy editor and formatter had seen the book before it went out, I was a tad nervous. (Ignore Wizard’s choking sarcasm A tad nervous? You haven’t slept more than four hours in weeks! He’s just amusing himself)
Okay so just one more thing then we’ll move on. I have all the pre-order links except B&N. I should have that one today — it just wasn’t showing up when I checked yesterday as B&N was doing some site maintenance. If you’d like to check out pre-orders that I have so far they are:
And now for Wednesday Worthy Candidate.
So what do you think, is he worthy?
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