Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Meet Sandy Lo and LOST IN YOU

I just found another perk to having the greatest job in the world. What's that you say? All the dark chocolate a girl can stuff in her face? Champagne bubble baths? Non-stop back rubs? No silly, I get debut authors like Sandy Lo as a guest blogger. Isn't that a kick?

Sandy Lo will be jet-setting around the globe in her whirl-wind virtual book tour of LOST IN YOU in February. Well guess what? We've got her first, or well, a sneak peak of her. She will be stopping by on February 1st to be our guest blogger, but I couldn't wait to post a little snippet. Shhh. Don't tell her. What Sandy Lo doesn't know...

For seven years, Sandy Lo has been the president of the groundbreaking website StarShine Magazine, an enterta inment outlet focusing on music. She has interviewed many celebrities from Jessica Simpson and Taylor Swift to Jonas Brothers and Simple Plan. Writing has always been Sandy's passion, and becoming a published author was a dream of hers. She is ecstatic that her dreams first came true with StarShine at only 18-years-old, and now again at twenty-six with her novel LOST IN YOU.

Various celebrities like actor Peter Facinelli (Twilight), singer/actor Chris Trousdale (Dreamstreet) and model/singer Anna Sundstrand (Play, Kohl's) have already shown their support for Sandy 's novel by taking photos with LOST IN YOU for her website: www.sandy-lo.com .

Official Website: www.sandy-lo.com
Buy at www.lulu.com: http://www.lulu.com/content/5708289
(The book will be available through all retailers in March 2009.)

Blurb of LOST IN YOU:
Cooper Jackson is a young woman who flies by the seat of her pants. She has a commitment-free life; always picking up and leaving whenever she feels like it. She doesn’t let anyone get too close, but a wedding in sunny Florida changes everything. Cooper meets Sound Wave, a famous “boy band”; the crooners are practically fighting for the young girl’s attention, but she is holding out for only one of them: Ryan Latham.

Cooper could not deny the sexual energy between her and the band’s resident “bad boy”, JT Madden. After a trip to the emergency room with Ryan, she is stuck in Florida with an injured ankle. Feeling like Cinderella after a night with Prince Charming, Cooper is glad she has an excuse to stay in town. Momentarily forgetting to keep her heart locked up, she finds herself pursuing Ryan, only to find out he’s engaged. With no hesitation, she agrees to go on a date with JT, leaving Ryan jealous and confused. He couldn’t help but be intrigued by this stranger, despite his pending nuptials.

With the help of JT and Sound Wave's inner circle of friends, Cooper finds herself letting go, and actually loving life. Soon she realizes JT is getting serious about her, but not before she and Ryan come to their own realization: they can’t stop thinking about each other.

That's it for now. Come on back on February 1st for the real Sandy Lo.
Kimberley Troutte

Gwen Hayes, and Oh Goddess

Hi gang,
I wanted to introduce you to buddy diva, chicklitter, and Samhain author, Gwen Hayes. Check out her new book, OH GODDESS. Proceeds from the sale go to the Coalition for Pulmonary Fibrosis.

“Oh Goddess ” by Gwen Hayes

Read An Excerpt Online

ISBN: 978-1-60504-367-8
Length: Short Story
Price: 2.50
Publication Date: January 27, 2009
Cover art by Tuesday Dube

Born to protect women’s hearts, her own beats longingly for a mortal. Oops…

Ondina, one thousand years a goddess, doesn’t think much of mortal men. Probably because her sole purpose in life is to protect the hearts of women who don’t want to fall in love. And now one of those blasted men—Jack—has shattered her sacred chalice, trapping her in a mortal body.

Jackson Nichols, on the partner track at his law firm, is the first to admit he always follows his head. Never his heart. Dina is infuriating, messy, condescending, sexy, beautiful and…well, just about everything that doesn’t fit into his meticulously planned life.

Neither expects to find many redeeming qualities in the other. But when push comes to love, which will Dina choose? Her newly human heart…or one thousand years of duty?

*All author and editor proceeds from the sale of Oh Goddess will be donated to the Coalition for Pulmonary Fibrosis. You can find out more about the foundation at www.coalitionforpf.org.

Warning: Recent studies show that consuming beverages while reading this story can cause damage to computer monitors, clothing, and sometimes nearby walls. Reader agrees to hold both Samhain Publishing Ltd. and Gwen Hayes harmless in case of accidental spewing caused by laughter.

Read An Excerpt Online

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Promo, Promo, Promo

I can see the start line up there, just barely. See it? That little, bitty flag blowing in the wind, on March 17th. See it now?

That's the day SOUL STEALER is released and my dream of becoming a published novelist finally sees the light of day. My first book. I'm still in shock. It's a good kind of it's-my-birthday-all-year-let's-all-eat-cake kind of shock.

But wait.

It's my first book, what do I do to promote it? I want to step on the field with a flames shooting out of my racing shoes and the crowd cheering my name. I need to promote myself and my book but how? I am going to tell you what I have come up with so far. If you have anything to add, please do. My goal is to learn and help others as so many people have helped me.

Okay, so where did I begin? I started off by asking questions and taking notes. I've harassed, um I mean kindly asked, authors, marketing people, reviewers, and website coordinators the burning question--what can a new author do to promote herself?

A couple answers have been repeated over and over again:

1) Write the best darn book you can and then turn around and write another. The theory being, once readers find you and like your book, they will go in search of anything else you've written. Your books are the best way to market yourself.

2) Have a website. Okay, this one is almost a given. We live in the age of the internet. If readers can't find you on the web, you might as well not exist. Do you need an expensive website? No. A free website came with my verizon account. It was amazingly simple to set up and I didn't need to know any computer language to do so. Is it the best site out there? (Don't make me chuckle, I'm drinking coffee.) Um, no. I did it myself people and there was a reason I took that computer language class twice in college. But it will do, for now. There are other ways to get a free site too, or relatively cheap ones. check around. There are also many web designers out there. Ask around. But do get a website. Now, or when you have the pen poised over the dotted line of your first book contract.

3) Have a web presence. The website you need. But do you also need to be on Facebook? My Space? Your own blog? Forums? Only you can answer this question, but I believe the more I'm "out there" the more people will remember me when my book comes out. At the RWA Conference last year, at least five people "recognized" me from the Romance Divas forum. Do not underestimate the power of the internet. It's like your very own red cape right there under your fingertips.

You have probably heard those things before. But there are other places you can promote your book too. Please note that my book is a romance, so the websites I talk about are mostly geared to that genre, but I'm sure you can find websites for other genres if you get on google and look for them.

1) Your publisher-check to see if your publisher has a blog or other promotional ideas. There may be blogging groups set up that you can join. Or a day you can blog on the publisher's site.

2) Novelspot (http://novelspot.net/) At Novelspot, I was able to put up an author page which included my picture, bio, blurb, and buy book link. For a small fee, this will be up for one year!

3) Authors promoting authors (http://authorspromotingauthors.blogspot.com) A free spot to promote your book and provide excerpts, blogs...The only catch is you will post the previous author's blog to yours. Authors helping authors. I LIKE it.

4) Advertise on websites where potential readers are. Several of the romance websites for readers sell advertising spots for authors and many will do reviews and interviews, such as, Night Owl Romance, Coffee Time Romance, Romance Junkies, The Romance Studio... the point is to buy ads where potential readers hang out. Seems simple enough, right? You may be able to buy a spot for your cover only, or your banner with a buy link to your book. Many of these sites also have forums that allow you to promote.

7) Hang out in the forums where your readers are. This helps you to connect with readers and get a pulse on what potential readers are looking for.

8) Do interviews on author sites and reciprocate the favor.

9) The goodies. Determine how much you want to spend on promotional give-me's. I decided to print postcards and hand them out around town. I used Vista Print for my post card with the picture of my cover on the front, blurb, ordering information and author details on the back. You can spend a fortune on these little trinkets and the jury is out as to how much they actually help book sales.

10) Contests. It seems like a good idea to have contests that maybe the winner receives a copy of your book. Contests drive folks to your blog or website. I have yet to do this, but will once March 17 rolls around.

Don't forget to be professional, gracious, and kind. Promoting isn't always about selling your books, but more about connect with people. Let me know what works for you.

Good luck out there!
Kimberley Troutte

Friday, January 16, 2009

Hi gang,
I just wanted everyone to know there's going to be an editor chat over at the Castle in the Sky (a yahoo group). It is a chance to "listen in" and ask questions of editors from over 20 different Publishing Houses. You'll have to join the yahoo group, but this should prove interesting.

Here's the info:

Join Castle in the Sky for our first ever Editor Chat on Saturday, January 17!

Have questions for editors? Curious about various publishing houses? Well join the fun as we host this great event for authors (published and non-published),
editors, and everyone in between.

> http://groups.yahoo.com/group/castleintheskyflightoffantasy/

Publishers and Editors Who Will Be In Attendance
> Black
> Velvet Seductions
> Bold Stroke Books
> Carnal
> Passions
> Champagne Books
> Cerrdiwenn
> Press
> Crescent
> Moon Press
> Desert
> Breeze Publishing Inc.
> Dramur
> Publishing
> Ellora¢s
> Cave
> ePress-Online
> Freya's
> Bower
> Lachesis
> Publishing
> Books
> Liquid
> Silver Books
> LindenBayRomance
> Pink
> Petal Books
> Red
> Rose Publishing
> Samhain
> Publishing
> Shadowfire
> Press
> The Lotus Circle
> The
> Wild Rose Press
> Wild
> Child Publishing

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Angela James Workshop at Romance Divas

I just wanted to pop in here and tell you about a wonderful e-publishing workshop going on over at Romance Divas. Angela James is the Senior Editor at Samhain Publishing (my publisher). Check out her workshop and ask any questions you might have about the world of e-pubs.


Kimberley Troutte

Getting ready for book release

Hi gang,
Happy New Year!
I hope this year brings you renewed hope, love and peace.

I have been busy trying to get everything set up for my book release. SOUL STEALER comes out March 17th, this Saint Patty's day. YAY! I can't believe it.

If you would like to check out the excerpt go to http://samhainpublishing.com/coming/soul-stealer.

There's so much to do. Order the promo materials, buy ads, set up interviews, the list goes on. I'm busy but oh-so joyful.
My family is happy and healthy. And my book is a comin'

Blessings to you all,
Kimberley Troutte