Showing posts from June, 2012

How about Book BINGO?

I thought of a great way to promote Indie Authors while reading the newspaper this morning. There was a BINGO insert promoting a local business. Instantly my mind wandered to "book bingo."

I'm really excited about this.

Can't you tell?

Saturday Short: Yard Sale by @redheadnews

Title: Yard Sale
Author: Stacey James
Twitter: @redheadnews
More free stuff: Smashwords
Website: Books by Stacey James
Book on Amazon: Molly's Soap Parlor - A Steampunk Novella

Yard Sale signs dotted Maple Street last Saturday morning. It was a beautiful day in many ways.

Sophie Green cheerfully made pocket change for hundreds of simple household items, most of which belonged to her husband, Otis Green.

Retweet Worthy Tweets # 6 — I want to read more books

I want to read more books.
— emma (@emma_199102) June 29, 2012

6 Basic Promotional Tools for Authors — Are you doing all of these?

No One Can Sell Your Book Like You Can, or How to Earn Real Money on Your Books (via Sky Warrior Books) As the publisher of Sky Warrior Books and a bestselling author, I'm sometimes at a loss as to how authors think their books will do well without them lifting a finger to promote.  That somehow a press is going to publish their book and they're going to rocket right up the charts to bestseller.  Or…

Donate a Book Sweepstakes: Lesson in a Facebook App

The Donate a Book Sweepstakes
ends 08/31/12 or
when 1,000 books are sold. The following is syndicated from the blog New Author Publishing and is reposted here with permission.

As part of a promotion from, I am using a 14 day trial app to promote a sweepstakes on my Facebook Fan page. It is a relatively simple promotion which is two part: gain buyers for my book, “Be Still,” and donate a book to the high school library of the winner’s choice.

Simple enough, right?

3 Things I Learned from a Publishing Contract

The following is syndicated from the blog Help Me Self Publish and is posted here with permission.

Okay, I have a friend (no really, it's not me) who self published her book a few years back before it was all the rage, and then got picked up by Barnes & Noble

Book Trailer: Love You to Pieces by @patriciarasey


Kindle (Wordless Wednesday)

All of these and more can be found on our Tumblr blog.

The Secrets Behind Buried Dialogue — syndicated post from @LynnetteLabelle

The following is syndicated from Lynnette Labelle's blog with permission.

Buried or hidden dialogue, both terms mean the same thing, but what is that exactly? Buried dialogue happens when you bury the dialogue between the narratives. The paragraph will look like this: narrative, dialogue, narrative. Still don’t know what I mean? Don’t worry. Some examples are coming up. Keep reading.

The Real Reason Writers Need To Read

The following is syndicated from the blog Moody Writing with permission.

There’s a specific skill you gain from reading widely — not just the stuff you like — that is an essential tool to becoming a better writer.

Critiquers, beta readers, editors, they read your WIP and offer you advice and opinion and maybe even suggest solutions. But how do you know if they’re right?

2 Excerpts: The Teacher's Billionaire by @cgricci & a giveaway.

Title: The Teacher's Billionaire

Author: Christina Tetreault

Genre: Romance

Synopsis: Callie Taylor's life is turned upside down when she learns the truth about her birth following the death of her mother. Not only is her father alive, but he's none other than presidential candidate Senator Warren Sherbrooke.

Billionaire and confirmed bachelor, Dylan Talbot, is devoted to his family. When his stepfather Warren Sherbrooke receives a letter from a past love telling him they have a daughter together, Dylan is instantly suspicious. In order to keep the media vultures away and protect Warren's political aspirations, Dylan convinces Warren to let him handle the situation.

As Callie and Dylan spend time together, they can't resist the feelings that blossom between them. However, when Callie learns the real reason he has been spending time with her their fledgling romance is put in jeopardy and only complete honesty can save it.

Retweet Worthy Tweets # 5 — Best selling Fantasy & Futuristic Shout Outs #novelines

The following are some of my own tweets where I was highlighting books from Amazon's Fantasy & Futuristic bestseller list by quoting a line of the novel (and a link to the book, of course). Do any of these book interest you?

Retweet Worthy Tweets # 4 — Tips, funnies, and inspiration

We start with several tweets offering helpful tips.

Know your customers. Understand their needs. Explain how you can help them. It's not about YOU, it's about THEM!
— Kim Garstツ (@kimgarst) June 24, 2012
Avoid analysis paralysis.Just get it done!
— Brian Carr (@carrbc) June 24, 2012

Excerpt: Imbroglio by @AlanaEWoods

Title: ImbroglioAuthor: Alana Woods
Website: Click HERE.
Twitter: @AlanaEWoods
Amazon Author Page: Click HERE.

Synopsis: What drives a person to extreme actions? Actions that others, if they knew, would have difficulty understanding.

What's in Noel Valentine's past that impels her to save a stranger's life knowing that it could endanger hers?

In hot tropical Australia Noel pulls one man from a burning car but is unable to save his passenger. When the stranger she saved shows up back in her home town of Sydney and asks for a place to stay, why does Noel agree? Especially given he could have been an assassin hired to kill his passenger. Especially given that she's pitching to win as a client the medical technology company that seems to be central to whatever is going on. A company that both assassin and victim had connections with. A company with questionable markets and equally questionable front men.

Imbroglio is an understatement for the mess she very quickly fin…

"…recommend to fantasy readers who love snarky, conniving, self-righteous demons."

Day of Demons
Edited by Colin F. Barnes
Genre: Fantasy Anthology
Book Synopsis Day of Demons is a collection of nine powerful stories featuring the conflict of demons and humans over the course of a day.

Read how one woman’s inner-self awakens to unexpected and frightening consequences, or how a charismatic half-breed thief is forced to strike a deal with a pen-stealing imp. Read about a mother as she struggles to cope with a deadly, satanic bargain, and a sword-wielding anti-hero as he returns out of exile to face his demonic fate.

Nine stories, nine demons, nine authors. From fantasy, to horror, to contemporary fiction, this anthology will fright, delight and grip you with tales of daring-do, danger and of course — demons.

Retweet Worthy Tweets # 3 — if you agree with the first tweet, let us know.

The theme of these tweets seems to be making friends online. Have you been able to do that? We'd love to hear your experiences. We're also open to guest posts along this line of thought.

Although I think @Masqcrew site as a whole is excellent, I esp. love the retweet-worthy tweets. They're like little snippets of awesome :-)
— ilanawaters (@ilanawaters) June 21, 2012

Why Librarians are Heroes (and Heroines)

Librarians can be
. . . sexy The following is syndicated from Ilana Waters' Blog.

It’s here! The final version of my MS landed in my inbox from my editor (the wonderful Marcia Trahan) just yesterday. I am going over it one last time, and then it should be ready for e-book production. Now if only I can get myself to stop second-guessing every comma and semi-colon. At that point, you may actually be able to read my debut novel–The Adventures of Stanley Delacourt: Book I of Hartlandia–by summer’s end.

In this book, the main character (and hero) is a librarian. He crosses a kingdom, gets kidnapped several times, and even battles a tyrant in his quest for answers and justice. But librarians don’t really have to do any of those things to be heroes—or heroines. Here are some of the reason they already are:

Which features of our site do you really like?

I'm constantly trying to improve the site. Mostly this has meant adding new features, and I've added a lot of features in the past few months. And I want to add more, do more. I need some feedback, though.

Regular Feature Survey
Do you like our regular features? If so, let us know. If there's a feature listed below that you couldn't care less about, don't check mark it ... obviously. However, if there's a feature that you think we could improve upon, don't check that one either.

Recapping our 5-star reviews # 1

Here's a Google Stories Video to get this show started.

"I'm very googleable," Brian Henke said.

And indeed he is. Check this out.

My query process could become an action movie

The following is syndicated from Janet's Blog.


*run, duck, roll, flip, dodge*

Shields up Captain!

Scotty get me the hell out of here!

Oh, sorry, where was I? Oh right, I was about to completely enlighten your life on the latest adventures in querying.

Book Trailer: Blue Sky Days by @SweetMarie83


Pledge to Read (Not Quite Wordless Wednesday)

All of these and more can be found on our Tumblr blog.

When your reputation is attacked, what do you do?

When someone publicly attacks your reputation, what do you do? And, specifically, what do you do about a slanderous blog comment? I received a doozy of such a comment, and after careful contemplation, I've come up with four possible responses.

Retweet Worthy Tweets # 2 — Don't miss the writing tips at the bottom.

Please RT: Today is World Sauntering Day! Tell us all the places to which your main character saunters. #amwriting#WritersRelief
— Writer's Relief (@WritersRelief) June 19, 2012
"Writing is tough, but every time I see a 4- or 5-star review, that makes it all worthwhile."
— Scott Bury (@ScottTheWriter) June 19, 2012

A Fantasy, a Romance, and a Thriller walk into the rain-forest…

(as in the Amazon kind of rain-forest)
...And Get Tagged!
Yes, I know, not the best punchline, but the set up did get you to click on the link, right? No? Well, even if you just wanted to see how lame I can be, I still score. But, it isn't just about me ... or this website.

Do you support Indie Authors?

Here's a recap of some of the books we've featured through our Amazon Shout Out Feature. Have you checked them out? Do you remember them? We'd love to hear your thoughts. (The authors might want to hear them as well.)

Would you like to join our review crew? Here's some books from our public waiting list.

Because of our growth in traffic and general popularity, we get more book review requests than we can handle, so I've been trying to expand our review crew.

There is no fee to join, and I do not impose a quota. Review as many or as few as you would like. I also am not imposing a general time frame for a review (unless I tell you otherwise such as for a blog tour). However, keep in mind that these authors have

Collective Brainstorming: a conversation about an ancient people who immigrate to a new land.

This is the 3rd post in a series about collective brainstorming.

The following is a conversation between @CFSpotlight and myself concerning the questions I raised in the second part of this series. I tried to copy and paste it into a readable script. Twitter conversations aren't always so fluid, after all.

Retweet Worthy Tweets # 1

Below I present some retweet worthy tweets. I may have retweeted each of them for various reasons, including thoughtfulness, funny factor, informative info, or some other worthy reason. If you agree, why don't you retweet it yourself? It can be done right here on the blog. If you aren't following the person, you can do that as well.

I'm such a bad artist I can't even draw a blank. #writer
— E B Taylor (@1EBTaylor) June 17, 2012

Excerpt: Cephrael's Hand by @melissagmcphail

Title: Cephrael's HandAuthor: Melissa McPhail
Website: Click HERE.
Twitter: @melissagmcphail

Synopsis: "All things are composed of patterns..." And within the pattern of the realm of Alorin, three strands must cross:

In Alorin...three hundred years after the genocidal Adept Wars, the realm is dying, and the blessed Adept race dies with it. One man holds the secret to reverting this decline: Bjorn van Gelderan, a dangerous and enigmatic man whose shocking betrayal three centuries past earned him a traitor's brand. It is the Adept Vestal Raine D'Lacourte's mission to learn what Bjorn knows in the hope of salvaging his race. But first he'll have to find him...

In the kingdom of Dannym...the young Prince Ean val Lorian faces a tenuous future as the last living heir to the coveted Eagle Throne. When his blood-brother is slain during a failed assassination, Ean embarks on a desperate hunt for the man responsible. Yet his advisors have their own agendas, and his…

Shouldn't a historian be able to tell a good story?

The following is syndicated from Jack's Blog.

Bruce Catton

I DISCOVERED THE CIVIL WAR in 1958 while in the eleventh grade of high school at Towson, Maryland. I suspect that the schools there danced around the subject for fear of offending their constituencies. Generally, the city of Baltimore was largely populated with the descendants of German immigrants who had earned passage to America by fighting for the Union, and the children of African slaves who had fled north after being freed from plantations in the deep south. The Maryland countryside surrounding Baltimore was largely populated by the descendants of rebels. Remember, Maryland was a slave-owning plantation state until the war ended, home of Harriet Tubman and Frederick Douglas, both born into slavery on Maryland plantations. Any teacher who dared broach the subject was bound to run afoul of someone's sensibilities.

Saturday Short: The Unicorn’s Augury (Part 2)

Title: The Unicorn’s Augury (Part 2)
Author: Aspen Lee
Twitter: @razorthinstudios
Website: Razor Thin Studios (Aspen Lee)

This is a continuation from last week. Read the first part HERE.

Get Your Sway On: a Toni Aleo giveaway

Toni Aleo is putting on a huge giveaway when she gets to 100 Amazon Reviews for Trying to Score. Right now she is up to 62 Reviews.

Once she makes it to 100 she will be revealing her cover, release date, and posting the first chapter of Empty Net, book #3 in the Assassins Series.

A Misunderstanding on Twitter—you be the judge!

EDIT: The comment system wasn't working for me. Anyway, I posted a reply to a very negative comment, the long one from Amanda. You can read my reply HERE.

Back on May 29th I had a short conversation with a follower on Twitter. I thought the conversation went fine. But it didn't ... apparently. We are each welcome to our opinion and our own interpretation, so I present the actual conversation below. You be the judge. I'll present my response afterwards.

Can vamps be revamped? 12 ideas!

Vampires have flooded the publishing marketing. Scratch that! They have flooded media of all kinds. The question is, are all vampire stories already told? I think a spin or two could still sell, if the timing is right. What do you think of the following?

These are my own brainstorming creations. I don't know if they already exist in some form as I do not read vampire literature much. You are more than welcome to usurp any of these ideas as I am quite certain that I will not write these myself.

"And charged them double the going rate on the stolen credit card."

OMAR: A Novel
Brief Synopsis: In 1995, the CIA / FBI jointly uncovered secret plans to recover priceless treasure from 2077 fathoms below the North Atlantic Ice Barrier, aboard RMS Titanic. A terrorist organization competed against divers, hired by a billionaire, which set off a complex web of intrigue and suspense. Dr. Cary Parker, Woods Hole oceanographer and maritime law specialist, was recruited to beat both teams to the ship's grave. A wave of global terrorism was set into motion, as Parker challenged the terrorists on his own turf. And a rare, priceless, early 20th Century book became the primary focus of a triadic search.

Creating a civilization from the ground up using collective brainstorming.

In the previous post about collective brainstorming, I introduced the idea of outlining a story via the internet, multiple people chipping in to create something complex.

Go Big or Go Home
I don't do anything small, which gets me into trouble sometimes because I can easily overwhelm myself. However, in the case of outlining, if you're going through the trouble of creating something unique, an entire world for your characters to live in, why not go all the way?

#Follow @HeavenOShey — writer of hot and sensual poetry.

Featured Follower: Heaven O'Shey
In her own words:

Born and raised on the bayous that I write about, I have intimate knowledge of the area, people, customs, language, and folklore.

A single mom of two grown kids, living in a small town in Louisiana.

I have a passionate and sensual spirit, which I pour into my books when I create my own little worlds. In my titles you will be transported to little bayou towns filled with suspense, action, drama, lots of hot sex, dominant men who protect their women, and women whose passions are released by these masterful men.

In my short period of writer's block, hot and sensual poetry entered my thoughts. These are now in book form.

When taking a break from my writing, you can find me channeling my creative juices into making luxury skin products, jewelry, and painting.

Tired of vampires and werewolves?

Telesa - The Covenant Keeper
Synopsis: Leila returns to the land of her birth in search of family and instead discovers she is heir to a fiery elemental birthright...all while navigating through the drama of a new high school with the help of her new best friend "Simone daahling" - a boy with flawless makeup and the catwalk style of Kate Moss.

She is introduced to the national sport of rugby and meets an irritating boy that would be much easier to hate if he didn't have chipped emerald eyes that are always laughing at her and a glorious golden smile. (The glistening, bronzed abs and Pacific warrior tattoos don't help either.)

Collective Brainstorming—Beating Writer's Block Together

Borg Collective
from Star Trek I'm probably not the first to come up with this idea, but just for what it's worth: I did think of it on my own (with little to no inspiration from others). That was a disclaimer, by the way.

Every step of the journey for the 21st century writer can be interactive (and probably should be). Once a manuscript is completed, there are online groups for beta reading, editing, marketing and so forth. There probably are sites for brainstorming as well, though my initial guess is that they aren't prevalent.

What I have seen is done via forums, but I'm not going to go that route. I want to see if it can be done via blog. Join me as I experiment.

"…like the Percy Jackson books, but appealing more to the female audience."

Prophecy of the Most Beautiful
Written by Diantha Jones
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Book Synopsis 18 year old schizophrenic Chloe Clever finds out she's the Oracle of Delphi and embarks on an adventure with her demigod guardians to solve the prophecy of the "Most Beautiful" and discover a destiny so epic that even the Greek Gods tremble.

Read it from the beginning: the Prologue from OMAR by @Craigt1

OMAR: A Novel
Brief Synopsis: A wave of worldwide terrorism, with far-reaching, cataclysmic effects, was set into motion in 1995 at 2077 fathoms aboard RMS Titanic. Woods Hole oceanographer, archaeologist and maritime law specialist at the Smithsonian Institute, Dr. Cary Parker, challenged the terrorists on his own turf, and what followed was an adventure of legendary proportions.

Review from Amazon
“Has a great plot.... Found it very captivating and hard to quit reading." Amazon Review By Goog, May 9, 2012. Format: Kindle Edition

Book Trailer: Never Surrender by @DeannaJewel


Animation (Wordless Wednesday)

All of these and more can be found on our Tumblr blog.

An attacking army of magical faeries, a love triangle, and even an old magician…

The River Runes (The Fight for Caithiir)
Written by Ken Lindsey
Genre: Fantasy
Book Synopsis Jonathan is a young man, on the cusp of taking his Master's place as magician of Third Chapel. Things are better than he ever expected; he's becoming closer to his father, he is in the midst of a blossoming romance, and his magical abilities are growing every day.

And then an exotic stranger named Bixby finds his way to Third Chapel. The faerie is curious about the people that inhabit Caithiir, the great city that stands so close to the woods, and Mother is not around to stop him from finding out what he can.

Mother, however, has been awakened in Bixby's absence only to find that one of her own has openly defied her. Jonathan and his Master are determined to protect Bixby, but the cost may be more than they can afford to lose.

"Deep ocean adventure in the tradition of Clive Cussler."

OMAR: A Novel
Brief Synopsis: In 1995, the CIA / FBI jointly uncovered secret plans to recover priceless treasure from 2077 fathoms below the North Atlantic Ice Barrier, aboard RMS Titanic. A terrorist organization competed against divers, hired by a billionaire, which set off a complex web of intrigue and suspense. Dr. Cary Parker, Woods Hole oceanographer and maritime law specialist, was recruited to beat both teams to the ship's grave. A wave of global terrorism was set into motion, as Parker challenged the terrorists on his own turf. And a rare, priceless, early 20th Century book became the primary focus of a triadic search.

"Deep ocean adventure in the tradition of Clive Cussler." Charles Pellegrino, New York Times Bestselling Author of the thriller, Dust

“... chillingly accurate in its depictions of terrorists, their actions, plots beliefs and ruthlessness. Thompson’s writing is top caliber, immediately putting him on a square playing field with the ge…

Like and Tag 3 books for the younger crowd.

Amazon Shout Outs
Help spread the word about these books and these authors. Take advantage of the various tweet buttons.

Genre/Theme: Books for younger readers


Do you have a question for Craig?

OMAR: A Novel
This is the 5th installment of The Masquerade Crew’s Novel Bits selection for June—OMAR: A Novel by Craig O. Thompson—a cross-genre suspense/thriller blended with a twist of historical fiction. OMAR is first in the Cary Parker Thriller Series… often mentioned by reviewers as enjoyable for readers of the above genres, but especially enticing for fans of Tom Clancy, Robert Ludlum, Clive Cussler, Jack Higgins, and Wilbur Smith.

With the recent Centennial, for the sinking of the RMS Titanic, OMAR: A Novel might be the timeliest book you ever download to your favorite reading device. I'm certain you won't be disappointed in OMAR: A Novel. This is a currently-being-adapted-to-a-screenplay story that will take you on a wild and historical ride. Stay with it... and I promise that it will stay with you.