Tuesday, March 28, 2017

4T Olio -- Do you remember 8-track? and why promo drives me nuts

Do you remember 8-track tape? Answer below (no cheating, lol).

Technology has changed substantially over the last 50 years. When we began the twentieth century, we had recording tech for both audio and video, but only barely. There were wax cylinders and vinyl records and photographic plates. The equipment to make these records were expensive. The average person couldn't afford to make their own recordings.

Then came film you could buy at the drugstore--and send out to be developed. Now families could record their most precious moments. But you still had to buy records, either by the album or the single.

Then, in the mid-sixties, suddenly we had magnetic tape and Polaroid self-developing film, and the world changed. For the first time, an audio recording device was within the price range of the middle-class family. You could record anything you wanted, including music off the radio. What a wonder!

Better yet, tape was portable. No needle-scratching just because of a few bumps! Soon tape-playing devices were available in cars. Remember cassettes?

But it didn't stop there. Computers were up and coming, and magnetic and disk technology combined to create data storage on magnetic disks. But we needed to transfer data physically. Soon we had 5 1/4 floppy disks--they really were flexible, which is why they were called floppies. On the heels of floppies came smaller, more indestructible 3 1/2 floppies--no longer floppy but the name stuck.

And then came *gasp* fiber optics and CDs, followed by DVDs. And *gasp-gasp* flash technology that gave us thumb drives--and gave rise to .mp3 players. Data and music were suddenly available in our palm.

Tablets and phones with stunning audio-visual capabilities came history's equivalent of a millisecond later.

So what does all this have to do with promotion?

Simple. As fast as technology has rushed by in the past few decades (does anyone have a floppy drive anymore? I think not), social media and the art of book promotion has changed JUST AS FAST. The things I learned as a new published author DO NOT WORK any more. This is a huge problem for me because, frankly, I like to do a job right the first time and then consider it DONE.

Yeah, I can hear the guffaws out there. LOL. Even I know how ridiculous that is. Because, you know--life happens. No plan survives meeting reality. That sort of thing.

So, this is all a round-about way of posting a couple promo helps that may be obsolete as soon as I suggest them.

8-track was the alternate cassette format of magnetic tape we used to play music back in the stone age. Sort of like VHS/Betamax.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

3T Writing Tidbit

Taking a brief time out from the serious business of writing for a link to the lighter side...

Q: How many writers does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Just one, but the light bulb has to endure a series of conflicts and challenges before it finally changes.
More totally awesome fun at Amanda Patterson writerly light bulb jokes.

You're welcome :)

Published since 2009, over the years I've accumulated various items of writing wisdom. The Third Tuesday Writing Tidbit showcases these items in no particular order. Click here to see all 3T Tidbits.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

2T Repeat Performance

In December, the lovely Magical Musings crew decided it was time to close down their blogging shop. I had three wonderful years with them. I thought you might be interested in seeing those posts now.

The Shifter Mystique by Vivi Andrews--originally published May 22, 2014

Award-winning (Golden Heart, RT Top Picks) author Vivi Andrews writes my favorite combination of sassy, steamy and smart. Please welcome Vivi in her first appearance at Magical Musings!
Recently a non-romance-reading friend of mine asked me what my upcoming book was about.  When I explained that Jaguar’s Kiss is a forbidden-love romance between the princess of a pride of lion shapeshifters and a sexy loner who shifts into a jaguar, the look he gave me could best be described as utter confusion.  He hadn’t been expecting big cats.  After some discussion, it became apparent my poor misguided friend couldn’t understand the appeal of shapeshifter romance, and I found myself in the position of trying to explain exactly why I find these stories so irresistible.
Was it the alpha male heroes?  They are so deliciously sexy—all power and authority and lovely bulgy muscles.  Dominant and determined and sexy and… *fans self*   Yeah.  What’s not to love?
Or is it the sensuality that naturally imbues a story about creatures that are so physical and possessing such heightened senses?  Shifters are dominated by instinct, in touch with their primal, animalistic sexual selves in a way that can be hot as hell.  Many shifter romances are written in a style that highlights that intense sensory body-awareness in a way that’s lush and vivid.  Hard to resist…
Or perhaps it’s the certainty involved in the popular fated mates trope in shifter romances?  The idea that there is a soul mate and when you find them you will sort of lock into place and there will be no doubt (and no questioning whether this is really the guy for you as you wade through the quagmire that human dating can be).  There’s a comfort in the feeling that the happily-ever-afters will make it all the way to the ever-after and when there’s a metaphysical mate-bond, it’s easy to believe they’re going to go the distance.
What do you think?  Why are shifters so dang sexy?  Alphas, animalism, mates?  All of the above?  Some other factor I haven’t considered?  The tight knit communities of packs and prides that exist in many of the books?  The sociopolitical elements of the shapeshifter worlds?  Or is just that we all dreamed of being able to transform into jaguars or wolves and run through the forest as kids (I know I did) and we never quite grew up?
Are you a shifter lover?  What makes them impossible for you to resist?
Jaguar's Kiss
Jaguar's Kiss
To get what he wants, he’ll have to rattle her cage...
Lila Fallon, the Lone Pine Pride Alpha’s only daughter, has been betrothed since childhood to marry her father’s chosen successor. The match is designed to maintain peace by shoring up any cracks in pride solidarity.
She’s always known she would do her duty—she just never expected to meet a man who would tempt her to throw it all away.
As a black panther, Santiago Flores couldn’t be a less suitable mate for the Alpha’s purebred lioness daughter. But that doesn’t change the fact that for every one of the five years he’s been with the Lone Pine Pride, he’s been head-over-heels in love with her. And when the Alpha announces that Lila’s indefinite engagement is about to end in a very definite marriage, Santiago is through holding his peace.
From their very first kiss, Santiago rattles Lila’s neatly ordered world. But can a lioness who’s always lived to please everyone else risk everything to please herself?
Warning: This book contains tempting lone-wolf jaguars, lionesses who long for fairy tale endings, arranged marriages, tangled emotions and a pride full of trouble.
Available for pre-order: Amazon | Barnes&Noble | Samhain Publishing
30% off at Samhain through June 16!
Vivi Andrews
Vivi Andrews
Vivi Andrews is an award-winning paranormal romance novelist with a travel addiction. Born and raised in Alaska, she still lives in the frozen north when she isn’t bouncing around the globe. Whether at home or on the road, she’s always at work on her next happily-ever-after. For more about her books or the exploits of a nomadic author, please visit her website at www.ViviAndrews.com, or find her on Facebook and Twitter.

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

1T Status Update

WANT TO WIN A KINDLE? Check out the March FREE Reads & Giveaway 3/5-9! Our Romance Authors are offering 69 books.

Most of them are FREE for a limited time. It's just our way of thanking our loyal readers.

Even better, we've pooled our funds to offer an awesome giveaway! Enter to win a Kindle and Amazon Gift Cards just for subscribing to our newsletters or following us on social media.

Here's the link to the March FREE for All & Giveaway: http://lovekissedbookbargains.com/free-for-all
*       *       *
We are all sad that Samhain Publishing, my first publisher, went dark March 1. I wish everyone the best, Christina M. Brashear, all the authors, editors, artists, and everyone who made it such a lovely home.

Where do I go from here? Well, I've already got a significant footprint with indie publishing. A dozen of my books are still going strong, including the Biting Love Short Bites, my contemporary fantasy Black Diamond Jinn, my romantic adventures including Hot Chips and Sand and Happily Ever Alpha: Falling for the Billionaire, and two of the three books already released in the Pull of the Moon series.

I'm still waiting on a couple other possibilities for reissuing the Biting Love series. So my first book to be republished will be Heart Mates (Pull of the Moon book 1). I'm aiming to have it up for preorder sometime this month. I'd like to reread it and freshen it up a bit for everyone :)

I've been spending a majority of my time improving my mail list. If you haven't signed up for my newsletter yet, now's the time! Sign up here.

The other project I'm currently working on is a series of three billionaire romances. Look for the first, about a bad-boy billionaire and the good girl who snags him, as part of the next billionaire box set, coming this fall.

Interspersed with this trio of contemporary romances, I'm working on a lovely fantasy novel that I'm planning to publish in serial format. Very excited about it.

Finally, I'm expecting edits in May for my first book in The Ancients series. Night's Caress is the next book set in the Biting Love universe. This is such a good book. I'm so chuffed to be rounding out the saga of Elias and the gang. Look for Night's Caress sometime after May.