Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Everyday chocolate and Easter Eggs... do they taste different... or is it just me?


This is a very short and random post, but bear with me.

As we head into the Easter weekend, this thought popped into my head, as it does every year.

I know each manufacturer of chocolate has their own recipe. One might put more cocoa powder in theirs than another, and one might put more milk in theirs, or sugar, or sweetener or.... we could go on forever. But what do they do to Easter Egg chocolate that makes it taste a gazillion times richer, more luscious, meltinthemouthicious, better than your everyday slab?

Is it just me? Or is it because it's an actual Easter Egg, a gift if you will, that makes it taste better? Do they have a secret recipe that they trawl out each year? Or am I simply mental? I don't know... you tell me...

Sunday, 6 April 2014

MY AWESOME FANS.COM - FANS JOIN FREE - AUTHORS ETC, FIRST MONTH IS FREE!







My Awesome Fans.com is the brainchild of JP Adkins Design.

It's a fabulous site where fans can join for free to keep up with their favourite author, artist, musician etc.

There is also a fan store where as a fan you can purchase books, music, paintings etc.

As an artist, you can also become a vendor and sell your work on the site, retaining 90% of your royalties.

It's a fabulous place to be and the links are on my blog. Make sure you join today!

Thursday, 3 April 2014

What makes a book sell?

Where have you been, I hear some of you cry (to the one's who are throwing your coats over your heads and running for cover, I can only say *big fat raspberries* ;)

I've been typing my socks off of late, been editing for existing and new clients, plotting like a mad woman, shouting at kids and managed to find the time to meet a new bloke. In fact, March has been a pretty eye-opening month for me in more ways than one.

This is not a blowing my own trumpet post, in fact it's more of a "What the chuff just happened?" post, with the question being the title of this blog - What makes a book sell?

I was discussing this very subject with the lovely Sue Brown when I rang her to tell her my sales for the month of March. I know some writers think it's crass to talk about sales, that they're in it for the love of writing, blah, blah. We're all in it for the love of it otherwise we wouldn't be doing it - but when push comes to shove, you're hoping to be paid handsomely for your efforts. Unfortunately, this doesn't happen overnight. It takes time for readers to discover you, to decide whether they like you, to connect with your story and your style in a way that makes them want to see what else you have to offer.

I usually sell anywhere between 400 and 700 books a month and believe me it varies, but March... well March was different. And what made it different? Ironically...  it was Un-Expected - which sold just over 2000 copies on it's own (and that was just at Amazon). I know I re-released Laurel Heights but I wasn't expecting it to be a great seller because most of the people I know and fans of the story had already read it. I was thinking I might sell maybe 400 copies of Un-Expected, so when I totted up the sales daily on my handy spreadsheet, I was shaking my head when the numbers exceeded that.

So I asked Sue why and we thought about it.for a while. Was it a more intense story than my other's? No, not really. Was it better written? No, not really. Was it cheaper than everything else I'd put out? No, definitely not. Had I promoted it more than anything else, or in a different way than usual? Nope. So why on earth did it sell over 2000 copies in ONE month? And how do you make every other book do the same? We were both silent on the phone for quite a while. I could smell burning and hear cogs turning at her end and she got the same from mine.

We did eventually come up with the answer that satisfied both of us.... we haven't got a bloody clue.

What do you think? And I don't mean about Un-Expected, that's just the example I'm using because it's the only one I've sold that many of in that little a time; I mean what do you think makes a book sell, as a writer or a reader? Do you have any idea, because we are completely flummoxed, and would love to get your take on it.

Saturday, 15 March 2014

RE-RELEASE DAY FOR LAUREL HEIGHTS - WHO WANTS A COPY?

Blurb:

2nd Edition

Detectives Scott Turner and Will Harrison are sent undercover after an apparent murder/suicide in Laurel Heights, an exclusive gay housing community. Will the two closeted officers be able to hide their attraction while each believing the other is straight? And is there a killer amongst them waiting to claim his next victim?


CONTENT ADVISORY: This title includes scenes of dubious consent.








It's Re-Release Day for Laurel Heights with it's beautiful new cover from the uber-talented Meredith Russell. Who is also responsible for the Laurel Heights 2 cover - which is coming soon!

The first five comments on this blog get a brand new ebook in the format of their choice... but make sure you leave your email or we'll be struggling. Happy commenting!

Monday, 3 March 2014

I wonder if Eric Kripke really knows what he did....

It might be a bit of a shocker for some of you, but I think it's safe to say that most of you know I'm a die hard fan of the show, Supernatural. I've been there since the beginning and I'll be there 'til the end, that much I know.

But as I watched this week's episode, I suddenly thought to myself, does Eric Kripke, the show's creator, really know what he did when he had the first germ of an idea for the show? I don't think he does, and I'm sure it's different for everyone, but I'd like to tell you what he and the generosity of his actors have done for me.

They've brought me three women who I will cherish as my sisters for the rest of my life. They've brought me friends I would never have had the opportunity to meet if it weren't for this show and the conventions that have spun off from it. Friends from around the world who have come together with one thing in common, but then developed into friendships that will stand the test of time.

We lost one of our brightest stars in the Supernatural fandom recently. Our friend Dee. She was one of the most genuinely beautiful souls I've ever met. Kind, generous, friendly to all and one of the best huggers out there. She always had a kind word for anyone who approached her, and if you knew her, even just to wave to her at the conventions, or the gigs, you were that much richer.

So when I watched the latest episode last night, I thought of Dee and the myriad of other wonderful people I would never have met if it weren't for this little show about two brothers and their road trip. So thank you, Mr Kripke and Messrs J2. Without you I would not have been blessed to have known Dee because I know my life is that much richer for having had her in it.

Saturday, 8 February 2014

What is... LEFT AT THE CROSSROADS?


What is Left at the Crossroads, I hear you cry!

Well... Left at the Crossroads is a series of six books set in the fictional village of Little Mowbury, written by the lovely and uber-talented Sue Brown and myself. Unlike the usual collaboration of two authors, we are not going to be writing each individual book together. What!!! You say? We have decided it would be cool if we wrote three books each, on an alternating basis, introducing two characters in the previous book to be the main focus in the following one - make sense yet?

First up is me with Un-Expected, which is scheduled for release this month, so I hope we've sparked your interest. Here is the cover and blurb for book 1...

Blurb:


Little Mowbury is a sleepy English village deep in the Cotswolds. The kind of village where you’re only a local if your lineage can be traced back to the dinosaurs. Where you can find everything in the single shop from morning newspapers, to dry-cleaning and getting your shoes mended. And, of course, where everybody knows everybody else’s business. It’s easy to find… you can’t miss it… just ask anyone and they’ll tell you… “It’s left at the crossroads.”

After being dumped on graduation day by the love of his life, Harry Boyd, Micah Lewis returned to the sleepy village he grew up in. Living next door to his mother wasn’t his best idea, granted, but when your heart was broken, there really was no place like home.


Six years later, secure and content in his job as midwife for a local birthing centre, the last person he expected to move into Lilac Cottage across the street from him, was Harry Boyd. Seeing Harry again sends Micah into a tailspin and opens wounds he thought had long since healed. Although Harry himself isn’t the only issue Micah has to face. That would be Harry’s very beautiful and very pregnant partner, Selena.

Friday, 3 January 2014

2014 PLAN OF ACTION... sort of... probably... subject to change depending on the way the wind blows or real life takes me *grin*


HAPPY NEW YEAR one and all! 2014 is upon us--not entirely sure how or when that happened but it is!

So... what are we going to do with it?
Are we going to sit back and let it dictate events?
Or are we going to grab it by the short and curlies and shake it until it begs for mercy?

I don't know about you... but I'm going for what's behind door number 2! I'm assuming the position, reaching down 2014's metaphorical pants and taking a handful. This is going to be a good year - or I'm writing a very stiff letter!

So, you say, after all this grandstanding, do I have a plan? Well... yeah... mostly. But you know what these character types are like... you tell them they're going one way, and they stamp their little tootsies and tell you to chuff off while they trot off in the opposite direction and do what they like. I can only do so much with what I have. But this is the general idea.... in no particular order, of course.

Except for MONTY GETS MARRIED - which will be out imminently and for free, I promise!

LAUREL HEIGHTS 2 (I'm sure it'll have a proper title... just don't ask me what it is yet)
I've been asked for a really long time to do a sequel and I really never intended to... until.... I got a kick-ass idea for a story involving our boys. Don't worry... there probably won't be an epilogue... probably.

UN-EXPECTED
This is a story set in a sleepy English village where everybody knows everybody else's business. Especially Doris Abernathay at the post office *shudder* there is nothing that gets past her. Micah (due to the fact that his father was still wetting the baby's head when he registered him and couldn't even say Michael, never mind spell it!) is a midwife and works at the local birthing centre in the nearby town. His life is swimming along at its normal, not necessarily exciting, pace when the new owners move into Lilac Cottage across the tiny village street. New owners are not a problem per se, but the fact that one half of the couple is Harry Boyd IV, his college sweetheart who broke his heart on graduation day. And the other half is a very pretty, and very pregnant.

KIDNAP (again working title)
This revolves around Jed, a widower, whose seven year old son has been kidnapped.
When the dust settles and there is no ransom note, no clues, no hope, the police hit a dead end.
Jed decides, however, that while there is breath in his body, he's never giving up and enlists the help of an ex-FBI agent, turned mercenary to do anything to find his son.

CREATING MONSTERS
This involves a British special effects make up artist, Kit, and the stuck-up actor he works with on his latest movie.

There are also a couple more floating around in me head and if I manage to tie them down I'll let you know.

I want to thank you for all your support throughout the last year and sticking with me through the lumps and the bumps. I really do have the best readers out there!

So here's to 2014 - may it bring you everything you wish and a few surprises you weren't expecting!

Lisa x