Cover reveal for Miss Frost Solves A Cold Case!

Y’all, I am SO excited about this book. It was so much fun to write!

Miss Frost Solves A Cold Case - cover

 

Here’s the cover for the first book in the new series I’m releasing in March, and some more info about this series.

*Is this a Nocturne Falls spin off? – It’s more of an adjacent series. The Jayne Frost books are set in Nocturne Falls and will feature some well loved characters in addition to some new ones. They’re also more mysteries than romances, but there is some romance. I can’t help myself.

*When is the book coming out and will there be audio? The book will be out around the second week of March if all goes well. Yes, there will be audio and it should be out a few weeks after the book goes live. (Again, if all goes according to schedule.)

*Will there still be more Nocturne Falls romances? Absolutely! I’m working on book 6 now. No firm date for its release but maybe May or June.

*Will there be more Jayne Frost books? I hope so, but that’s really up to you guys. If you love them and want more, I’m happy to write them. If you don’t love it…then I may not write more. We’ll figure that out together.

*How can I find out when these books are released? The best way to stay up to date with book release news (which includes audio, short stories and everything else) is to sign up for my newsletter: http://eepurl.com/xT-9L

If you have any other questions, leave them in the comments and I’ll do my best to answer them!





The Cost of a Book

Every once in a while, someone comments that my books are too expensive. Affordability is relative, so fair enough. For that person, $4.99 is too much to pay for a full-length book. (Fortunately, there are libraries.)

So yes, $4.99 is what I charge for the full length books in my Nocturne Falls series. Print books are 9.99. I just released a short story in the series and it’s priced at .99. I have a few more shorts I’ll be putting out for that price as well. (And just as an aside, the first book in the series, The Vampire’s Mail Order Bride is currently free at all retailers. So BIG discount there.)

So why do I price the way I do? Aren’t ebooks cheap to produce? Let’s talk.

Each full length book I put out in the Nocturne Falls series costs me approximately $1500 to produce. That number includes the digital and print cover, editing, proofreading, and digital and print formatting – all things I do to provide the best possible end product I can.

What it doesn’t include is the three to four months of my time that go into writing, revising and approving each book. Nor does it include the advertising and marketing I do for each book so that it might actually get noticed by readers, something that gets harder and harder in this current market.

It doesn’t include the cost of maintaining my website or my newsletter list. It doesn’t include the time I put into social media (not writing) so that my pages stay active and my reach doesn’t dry up completely. It doesn’t include all the books and Kindle Fires and other swag I give away each week on my Facebook page.

And let’s not even start with what I spend on attending conferences to meet more readers and make myself a better writer.

But that’s the cost of doing business. (And then there are audiobooks, which are a whole ‘nother expense.)

I think $5 is a fair price. It’s far less than what most traditionally published ebooks go for. In fact, my traditionally pubbed ebooks currently range from $6.99 to $9.99.

If writing was a hobby for me, maybe I’d spend less producing the book and charge less for it, but writing is my business. It’s what pays our mortgage, puts food on our table and feeds the kittens. And, you know, sometimes gets me a new pair of shoes.

So what can $5 buy you these days?

Well, obviously, a Nocturne Falls book. Which, I might add, you can reread any time you like and on average, seems to provide about five hours of reading enjoyment. Maybe more. And that could be spread out over a couple of days.

A fancy coffee at Starbucks is about $5. But unlike a book you can reread over and over, you can only drink a coffee once. Probably lasts thirty minutes. I’m guessing. I drink homebrew because going out for coffee would cut into my writing time.

A movie ticket is $13 around here. I think a matinee is $11. So more than twice what a Nocturne Falls book costs and again, you only get to see the movie once for that price. Plus it’s over in two hours. And let’s not talk about how much popcorn costs…

25 by Adele is $11.88 on Amazon if you buy the CD. That’ll get you about 70 minutes of listening and you can play it over and over. Not a bad deal at all. In fact, I may have just one-clicked. But still more than $5.

Hmm. Not a lot beside a book you can get for $5 that lasts for any reasonable period of time. At least not anything I can think of. But then I don’t get out of the house much. Mostly I’m at my desk writing.

I hope this sheds some light on what goes into producing a book. If you have any questions, I’m happy to answer them.

Happy reading!

 


Vampires, valkyries and kittens, oh my!

*THE VAMPIRE’S FAKE FIANCEE IS LIVE! *

The Vampire's Fake Fiancee

Welcome to Nocturne Falls, the town that celebrates Halloween 365 days a year.

The tourists think it’s all a show: the vampires, the werewolves, the witches, the occasional gargoyle flying through the sky. But the supernaturals populating the town know better.

Living in Nocturne Falls means being yourself. Fangs, fur, and all.

Sebastian Ellingham isn’t known for being a happy vampire. And when his long estranged wife returns expecting to pick up where they left off, things take a sharp turn toward cranky. Sure he’s been protecting her for centuries, but her assumption that he’s still available (he is) rankles.

His answer is to hire a woman to play his fiancée. The lucky victim is Tessa Blythe, sister of one of the town’s deputies, librarian in need of a job and, oh yes, reluctant Valkyrie. Playing along with Sebastian is all about the end game: earning the position of Dean of Library Studies at the local private academy.

When unexpected sparks fly between them, they agree to mutually deny the attraction. Fate, however, has other plans…

Kindle: http://amzn.to/1MZaxjI
Kindle UK: http://amzn.to/1MYSoCv
Nook: http://bit.ly/1VT9SaC
Kobo: http://bit.ly/1ZidKap
iBooks: http://apple.co/1SFDDvP
iBooks UK: http://apple.co/1SFDDvP

Print (paperbacks) should be available sometime in the next week)

HAPPY READING!


My Best Tips for New Indie Authors

I’ve been blessed to have a tremendous first year of dedicated self-publishing, but I also know what it’s like to have not-so-great years. I started self-publishing in 2010, but because of my traditional publishing career, I never fully committed myself or my writing to it. The time just wasn’t there frankly, which I think is purposeful on the side of traditional publishers. They want you too busy to try out the indie side of things. (Because the indie side has cookies. But I digress.)

For those of you on the hybrid fence, I can tell you being full indie has been life changing. But I suppose that’s a post for another day. ;o)

In the year (14 months, really), that I have been full indie, I’ve learned a lot. And because I like to see everyone do well, I wanted to pass on some of the things I’ve learned that might be helpful to those of you just starting on this journey.

1. Be humble

If you’re coming out of traditional publishing, it’s easy to think you know what you’re doing, but indie publishing is a different venture. In some ways, very different. In others, not so much. You have to be more disciplined, in my opinion, because you’re solely responsible for your own deadlines.

And if you’re starting out in indie, you might think you’ve read everything you need to read, bought all the indie publishing how to books you need to buy and talked to all the people you need to talk to, so much so that you’re sure you know exactly what you need to do.

You don’t.

Whatever your starting point is, you’re still behind the curve. Keeping an open attitude about that is important. Sit at the feet of those who have the kind of career you want to have and soak up whatever they’re willing to offer.

Learning the market is a great example of this. What NY thinks is dead could be (and often is) thriving in Indieland.

2. Be teachable

This goes hand in hand with being humble. If someone who’s been at this longer than you offers you some advice, listen. Eagerly. Ask questions. Take notes. Truly consider their words. See how you could put their advice into practice and make it work for you.

If someone with some knowledge tells you that your covers aren’t quite right and takes the time to show you better examples, don’t respond with reasons why your covers are fine. If they want to help you re-write your blurb to make it catchier, see what you can take from that to write the next blurb better on your own.

Accept help when it’s offered. Trust me when I say those people are giving you the gift of their time and energy and in self publishing (and hello, life), those are two things that can be in rare supply.

3. Be grateful

When you get a gift of help from an author you respect, appreciate it. Saying thank you is a good start, but go above and beyond. Buy them a little gift certificate to their favorite coffee shop. Better yet, buy that author’s book, read it, then promote it on whatever social media you use and leave a good review. Yes, I said a good review. If you don’t think the book deserves five stars, then don’t leave a review that’s less than that. (And if you don’t think the book deserves five stars, why are you taking their help in the first place?)

If someone whose help you don’t want offers, you should still thank them kindly as you decline. You never know when you may want their help in the future. People who burn bridges without building ships don’t make very much progress.

Beyond the business side of things, when you start getting fan mail, respond. A reader who took a few moments to tell you how much they liked your book deserves a personal note back.

If you don’t appreciate your readers, you don’t deserve to be in this business.

4. Be patient 

Success rarely happens over night and it rarely happens on our timetables. Don’t freak out if the first book you release isn’t met with instant buzz, best-seller status and a shower of dollars. What accompanies most book releases is the sound of crickets.

Don’t despair, give up writing, or complain about how readers don’t get you. (If you must do the last one, do it off-line.) Most series take several books to build to a sustainable level. Understanding that can save you a lot of heartache.

You also need to be patient when it comes to putting that first book out there. Just because you typed The End doesn’t mean it’s ready for public consumption. Books need to be edited and polished and failing to do so can cause irreparable damage to your brand.

(Don’t think you have a brand? You do, trust me. You’re building it with everything you publish and post.)

5. Be prepared

I’m not talking about goals, but those are HUGELY important. (And yet another post.) I’m talking about being ready for publication bringing you either success or failure.

How? Start by defining those two words.

What does success mean to you? For me, it was a certain dollar amount per month per book. I had a bottom line for whether or not I’d continue my Nocturne Falls series after three books. As book five is set for release in about two weeks, you can assume I met that goal. Decide what your success goal is so you have a benchmark.

Failure might then be defined as not reaching that benchmark. Okay, what then? Be ready to autopsy the situation and see what went wrong. Look at your cover, your blurb, your available sample. Are they all on point? If one of them isn’t right, it can ruin sales. Really. (Those things are all fixable, by the way.)

If you can’t figure it out, don’t be afraid to ask other authors you trust and respect for their take on what went south, but if you do that, please re-read the above.

6. Be focused

Distraction is the enemy of success. Being focused means learning to say no to all the things that aren’t going to move you closer to achieving your goals. This sometimes means turning down great stuff like anthologies, box sets, etc.

It’s okay to say no. In fact, it’s important to say no. How else will you protect your writing time? There isn’t an app on earth that’s going to give you more than twenty-four hours a day. Time is finite. And when you start out, you need to be using the time you have to get your books done.

There will be other opportunities. I promise. What matters most when you’re new is building your back list, getting books out there and establishing your series. Publish your first three books, then re-assess. How are they doing? Are fans clamoring for more? Do you have time to write that novella for the charity anthology? If so, go for it. If not, don’t feel bad about turning it down.

* * *

Whatever you do this year, I hope it’s a smashing success. I believe a rising tide lifts all ships.

Happy writing and happy reading!


The year behind and the year ahead

Happy New Year 2016 replace 2015 concept on the sea beach2015 was quite a year for me. I left traditional publishing to go indie and launched a new paranormal romance series, Nocturne Falls. It was a big departure from the darker urban fantasy I’d been writing, but at the same time, much truer to my natural story telling voice.

I put out four books, two shorts, and two audio books, making 2015 my most productive year to date. Of course, I started writing the first Nocturne Falls book in 2014, so it didn’t all happen in 2015.

I learned a ton. A ton. I didn’t know anything about audio books at the beginning of the year, but I learned and with the help of my fabulous narrator, BJ Harrison, put out the first two Nocturne Falls books. And now I know audio is a whole new market and an important piece of my career puzzle. I will continue putting my books into audio as long as readers (listeners?) want them and sales keep up. I anticipate the next three Nocturne Falls books will be live in audio within six months.

For 2016, it’s going to be more of the same but also some new. I’m hoping to add a second series to the Nocturne Falls world, this time with more of a mystery/light urban fantasy feel. It will have the same fun, light-heartedness the current series has, just with some new main characters and story lines.

No worries, though! I’m not putting Nocturne Falls to the side. I plan to do two Nocturne Falls romances and two Nocturne Falls mysteries. In addition, I’ll be re-issuing some books that have reverted to me. All in all, it’s going to be a busy year, but a good one.

And now, I must get back to work…

Happy reading!

 


The Werewolf Meets His Match is now live in audio!

The Werewolf Meets His Match  AudiobookYou can grab a copy here:

Audible: http://adbl.co/1HXod3r
Amazon: http://amzn.to/1NJjZwA
iTunes: http://apple.co/1RHmhOw

 

 

 

 

 

 

Or listen to a sample right now:

 


December sale on The Vampire’s Mail Order Bride!

TVMOB Christmas sale post graphic sm

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For the month of December, I’m running a sale on The Vampire’s Mail Order Bride. Grab yourself a copy or gift a copy to a friend!

Kindle: http://amzn.to/1Jc8MTW

iBooks: http://apple.co/1RrtRer

Kobo: http://bit.ly/1EyygTC

Nook: http://bit.ly/1dHJCQ8


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