Friday, March 29, 2013

Christine Donovan's View on Indie Publishing

Have you been asking yourself lately, “Should I jump into Indie Publishing?” I asked myself that for many months before I did indeed take the plunge in October 2012. In case you’re wondering, there’s no right or wrong answer. Each author’s decision will be their own. I thought I’d share my reasons why with you today.

I’ve been writing for ten years. I have nine books in various stages of completion. I love to write, submitting to editors and agents, not so much. When I first started writing, I’d submit all the time. As the years went on, I submitted once or twice a year after querying at a conference. I also used to do contests. I don’t anymore, although I would like to get back into entering contests. I think you get great feedback and it can open doors.

For several years I listened to my Indie Published friends talk about the pros and cons of self-publishing. I knew some on them were making big money, and others were not. All would admit the promoting of their books took up a large chunk of their time. So I asked myself, “was I up to the task?”

“Yes.” And part of the reason I did, is because three years ago I got laid off from my job and I’ve not been able to find another one.  I began writing full-time and slowly stopped looking for a job. I don’t want to say money was my motivator, because that is only part of it.  But I will admit getting checks each month from my royalties is a great feeling.  I’m not getting rich, but I am contributing to my household. Another reason I decided to Indie Pub is I felt the bandwagon was leaving without me. I watched the transformation of the whole E-Book industry evolve and I wanted to be part of it. I also believed I had good stories to tell and I wanted people to read them. Of course I‘d be lying if I did not say I still have dreams of being published in the traditional sense. I still want to see my books in Barnes and Nobles. But, who knows what the future holds for any of us. 

I won’t lie; being Indie Published is hard work.  There are a few keys things you must do.  Having BETA readers is essential; I only recently started realizing this.  Hire a GREAT editor, one who not only edits punctuation and grammar, but also story content. I will admit my first book went up with spelling and grammar mistakes. I pulled it, corrected the mistakes and put it back up. Unfortunately you can’t erase bad reviews. My next book, “The Lady and the Earl,” will be perfect before I put it up.  Hire a cover artist. The costs vary, but you can find good designers out there who charge between $40 and $100. Remember, a cover is the first thing a potential buyer sees. It must catch the eye in a good way. FYI, my book, “The Reluctant Duke,” did hit No. 77 on Amazon-Regency Romance, Kindle Books for a short time.

As far as promoting goes, you do not have to spend money to do this. Creating a website is free at most places, and they have templates. Blogs, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Goodreads, LinkedIn, all free. Time consuming, but free. Facebook is full of groups geared toward writers and promotion. I’m computer challenged, yet I created all of the above myself. (My website, etc, is simple, but affective) I also learned how to format my books for e-publication. A challenge to be sure, but a great writer friend at Rhode Island Romance Writers gave a workshop on formatting and it is my go-to resource.  I still have yet to format for print. That is next for me.

I hoped I helped anyone who is still on the fence when it comes to Indie Publishing. Please feel free to ask questions. Thank you for taking time out of your busy day to visit.


As a life-long avid reader, Christine always dreamed about becoming a writer. She realized her dream ten years ago when she began penning her first romance novel. Now she has nine novels in various stages of completion. The genres include, Regency, Contemporary and Paranormal Romance.
Christine is married, has four sons, one granddaughter and four cats.
When she is not writing she can be found reading, painting or gardening. She loves DIY projects.
Here are the links to Christine’s first book, “The Reluctant Duke.”
     “Please, do not be afraid.”
Was he serious? Not be afraid?
Lady Amelia Seabrook struggled with her skirts as she waded through the shin-deep water to retrieve her boots and stockings from a nearby rock. Her muslin skirts were soaked to above her knees and clinging most embarrassingly to her legs; her stockings and shoes were drenched as she had splashed them in her hurry to exit the water. The mile walk back to her home, one she normally enjoyed, would be uncomfortable because of the dampness of her clothing and her haste to remove herself from this intruder.
How dare this stranger ruin the time she spent daydreaming about Captain Rycroft, her beloved. How dare he interrupt? It was only during these lonely, quiet times that Amelia allowed herself to think of him. To dream he still lived. But today, when she needed this time to remember and to reflect, this stranger had destroyed it.
Amelia turned, her chin held high, because she would not cower before anyone. “Who are you, sir?”
“Lord Bridgeton. My land abuts this creek.”
By the narrowing of Lord Bridgeton’s eyes, Amelia knew she failed to hide her shock to meeting him here. She’d long known the earl lived as a recluse because of a scandal involving his older brother and his brother’s pregnant wife. She’d found out about all this from servants’ gossip.
Looking at him now, he did not look dangerous. Frightening perhaps, the way he sat on his fine stallion, towering over her, but not dangerous.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Rogue's Hostage by Linda McLaughlin

Rogue's Hostage

By Linda McLaughlin

Historical Romance


4 ½ stars and a Top Pick from Romantic Times!

Romantic Times Nominee—Best Small Press Romance of 2003!

2nd Place - Lorie Awards - Best Historical Romance!


His hostage... 


In 1758 the Pennsylvania frontier is wild, primitive and dangerous, where safety often lies at the end of a gun. Mara Dupré's life crumbles when a French and Indian war party attacks her cabin, kills her husband, and takes her captive. Marching through the wilderness strengthens her resolve to flee, but she doesn't count on her captor teaching her the meaning of courage and the tempting call of desire.


Her destiny...


French lieutenant Jacques Corbeau's desire for his captive threatens what little honor he has left.  But when Mara desperately offers herself to him in exchange for her freedom, he finds the strength to refuse and reclaims his lost self-respect. As the shadows of his past catch up to him, Jacques realizes that Mara, despite the odds, is the one true key to reclaiming his soul and banishing his past misdeeds forever.


(Previously published by Amber Quill Press)


Buy links:

Excerpt from Rogue’s Hostage:

Holding the towel to his shoulder, he walked over and stood by the bed to check on the woman, who was still in a faint. Despite her pallor, he noted that her skin was fine, her nose straight and thin. She had a lower lip just full enough to entice a man to taste it, and a stubborn chin that dared him to try. Under different circumstances…

She was perhaps not as lovely as he’d thought when he first saw her standing in the clearing—her hair, the color of corn silk, shining in the sunlight. Still, she was tall and fair, with slender curves and shapely ankles visible beneath the short skirts of a farm wife.

And now she was a widow. He stared down at the woman and silently vowed to see that no more innocents died today.

The woman gave a soft moan and opened her eyes. When she spotted him, she shrank back against the wall, arms folded defensively across her breast. His gut tightened. He didn’t enjoy terrifying women, but fear should make her easier to control. She had already proven unpredictable.

Terror, stark and vivid, glittered in her eyes. "Who are you?"

"My name is Jacques Corbeau, lieutenant in the army of France. And you are my captive."

* * *

Mara inhaled sharply, panic building inside her. This couldn’t be real. It was all a bad dream. She would wake up soon and tell Emile about it, and they would laugh. And laugh and laugh and…. She swallowed the hysteria engulfing her.

"Madame, are you listening to me?"

The Frenchman’s voice, sharp and insistent, demanded her attention. "There is not much time. My companions are not patient men. We must leave soon, but first I want you to bind my shoulder. Where do you keep bandages?"

Her mouth and throat were dry when she swallowed, but she choked out an answer. "The trunk. Under the bed."

He squatted beside the bed, pulled out the trunk and rummaged through it. She watched his every move, unable to take her eyes off him, alarmed by the physical threat he represented.

He was a tall man who dominated the cabin as Emile never had, and his state of undress revealed nearly every inch of his lean and powerful form. Not only was he bare to the waist, but his breechclout and leggings failed to completely cover his thighs and buttocks. He had a wide-shouldered, rangy body and long, sinewy legs. He looked strong, virile, and infinitely dangerous.

A cold knot formed in Mara’s stomach. The French had killed her father and now her husband. What would they do to her?

She wrapped her arms around her waist. Her grandfather would say whatever happened was God’s will, but she rejected that idea. What kind of God allowed such awful things to happen?

Fearfully, she watched as the Frenchman shoved the trunk back under the bed and stood. He held out the bandages, and she froze. She couldn’t touch him, she just couldn’t.

The man’s heavy black brows drew together in a fierce frown, but his voice was without emotion. "Madame, I am all that stands between you and the men who killed your husband. I can be persuaded to act as your protector. It is to your advantage to do what I command."

He dropped the bandages beside her on the bed, then reached out to touch her hair. "Must I remind you, in my companion’s eyes, scalps are more valuable than live captives?"

Horror sliced through her fear. "Emile!" She shot off the bed and bolted for the door. The Frenchman caught her around the waist before she could reach it.

"It is too late, madame," he said in a hushed voice. "It is done."

"No," she moaned, as she fought to banish the image of a bloody scalp, raw flesh.

The Frenchman turned her toward him, holding her by the shoulders, and spoke in an insistent voice. "Listen to me and be sensible. You must be strong now. We have a long journey ahead of us."

Dazed, she stared at him. "A journey? To where?"

"Fort Duquesne."

Mara gasped. The dreaded enemy stronghold deep in the wilderness. She struggled to get free, clawing at his powerful arms.

He gripped her tighter, grimacing as he did. "Stop it! What chance do you think you have against three men? Do as I say and you will live. Refuse and…" He let the implication hang in the air between them.

Live. Yes, that was what she must do. She must bide her time and stay alive. Her brother would find her and exact revenge. But for now, she was on her own.

She straightened her spine and stared into the Frenchman’s eyes. "How do I know I can trust you, monsieur?"

He met her gaze, but a shadow darkened his eyes. "You have my word of honor."

Bitterness filled her. "The word of a Frenchman? What is that worth?"

"For the moment, madame, your life."

My thanks to Tonya for hosting me today. Hope you are enjoying the Egg-cerpt Exchange.




Linda McLaughlin grew up with a love of history fostered by her paternal grandmother and an incurable case of wanderlust inherited from her father. She has traveled extensively within the United States and has visited Mexico, Canada, & Australia. A lifelong dream came true with a trip to England where she was able to combine sightseeing and theater with research for her novels. A native of Pittsburgh, she now lives in Southern California with her husband.


Her first book was Worth The Risk by Lyn O'Farrell. Now Linda writes historical and Regency romance. She loves transporting her readers into the past where her characters learn that, in the journey of life, love is the sweetest reward.


She also writes sexy to erotic romance under the name Lyndi Lamont.



Sunday, March 17, 2013

Summer's Growth by Tina Gayle

Tina Gayle grew up a dreamer and loved to escape into the world of books.

After years of working in the business world doing a variety of jobs, she decided to try her hand at writing and hope to incorporate the joy of being a mother into her books.

Currently working on a series about four executive wives, she is excited about combining elements of women fiction with the passion of romance. The first two books, “Revive” and “Birth” have been released and the last two are coming out in 2013.

Married twenty-five years, she and her husband love to travel and play golf.  She can’t wait for Mike to retire so they can do more of both.

Read the first chapter of any of her books by visiting her website.

Summer’s Growth (first book in the Family Tree Series)

Forced by the family spirits to get a life, Mattie Winston has to train her replacement Amber Harrison to be in charge of all the workings of the Winston estate. Mattie and Amber are both caught by surprise when strange accidents start happening which threaten their lives and an unknown ghost makes an appearance.


Struggling to find a new mission in life, Mattie faces the old wounds of rejection when Quincy Miller reenters her life. Can she give him another chance or will this just lead to more heartache?



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Twitter -!/AuthorTinaGayle

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Friday, March 15, 2013

Love and Luck; Luck and Love


I was born and raised in the United States. But I have a long line of relatives born and raised in Ireland. So this time of year is my favorite. St. Patrick’s Day is one of my favorite holidays! I love to celebrate it and not by drinking. I love the food, the crafts, learning more about Ireland and my heritage in itself.

What does luck have to do with love? If you ask an Irishman he will tell you everything! If it weren’t for luck there would be nothing!

In my upcoming release, Claimed, luck had everything to do with Lysandra and Michael’s love. It was by luck Lysandra was at a club with her friends, the same club Michael was visiting, on the same night at the same time. Now that’s luck.

Want even more luck for the story. Lysandra’s friends told her she needed to get out and date more, she was too focused on work. They dared her to find a hot guy and ask for his number. She took them up on her dare and after searching the club she found Michael and there story started from there.

Was it luck that won me a publishing contract with MuseItUp Publishing? I have to say, yes a little, luck played in that I joined Marketing For Romance Writers just in time for a huge pitch event and Lea at Muse grabbed my baby up to publish!

So because of that and the fact I believe in the phrase ‘Luck of the Irish’ I am revealing my cover here, today for this blog hop, of my upcoming release, Claimed, with MuseItUp Publishing. Be sure to check back for an official release date soon!


To hold you over check out my release from Secret Cravings Publishing, Night Promises, the first in my Night Pleasures series.


Kelly O’Keefe first met a vampire when she was twelve. Now the pair are best friends and have opened Night Pleasures, an underground club that caters to vampires and their needs. When Kelly’s sister is murdered, she finds herself working with Connor, a vampire she's been in love with for months. Unable to trust men, let alone a vampire, can she let him help her solve her sister’s murder?

Connor has been watching after Kelly for seven months with the help of his sire and best friend Micah. Connor has kept himself at a distance even though he knows they are life mates. He's afraid of losing control and turning Kelly against her will. When he learns Kelly plans on investigating her sister’s death, he steps in and allows himself to get close to her.

But how close is too close?

Secret Cravings Publishing  |   Amazon  |  Barnes & Nobel

Giveaway time! Are you feeling lucky?

My contest is simple, go to my Facebook page and like it. Leave a comment here letting me know you liked my page. On the 19th I will draw a name. The winner can choose either of my releases. You will get Night Promises that day or you can wait until Claimed is through edits for your copy.

Either way leave a comment stating you liked my Facebook page and/or something you love about St. Patrick's Day, if you have been lucky this year, etc. Your comment also enters you into the big drawing which is:

1st Grand Prize: A $100 Amazon or B&N Gift Card
2nd Grand Prize: A Swag Pack that contains paperbacks, ebooks, 50+ bookmarks, cover flats, magnets, pens, coffee cozies, and more!
There are over 300 blogs participating in this hop. The below link will take you to the main page of all the blogs hopping. You have three days to visit as many blogs as you can and comment for your chance to win tons of prizes and the ultimate prizes above! 
Is the luck on your side??
Find the other hoppers here!  


New Year, New Experiences with Anna Bayes

Under His Wings, a M/M/F menage love story by Anna Bayes



Bonnie thought Matt was everything she ever wanted: boyishly charming, understanding and exciting. Then she realized that he had another lover: Sean, an artistic, intensely jealous and handsome man. She tries, and fails to accept herself as the barely tolerated female lover. On New Year's Eve, she demands a meeting amongst the three. The confrontation sparks dangerous rage, and something else with an entirely different heat level: steamy desire. Can she bring about a reconciliation satisfactory to everyone involved as she surrenders to her passion?


Buy link:



As I stood before my reflection in the mirror this morning, I tried to rehearse my request to Matt. I repeated it many times, looking into my eyes: the round, dark brown pupils returning my gaze unconvincingly. I shook my hair loose, and reasoned with myself again. If all Matt's talk about my importance is only empty words to keep me, then he is a lying bastard, and I am better off without him. I tried to say it aloud with conviction, but my voice betrayed me; I sounded like a frightened, disappointed little girl. I know logically that I can live without him, but loving him has become such an integral, necessary part of my life; I am not sure I could stop, even if we parted. 


5 pm. Matt took my hand as I closed my shop early for the day, kissed it and buried it in the large pocket in his jacket. I love how my hand fits snugly in his; it is as if all my body parts have been tailor-made to suit him, and melt into him. I concentrated on staring at the toes of my boots, mustering up my courage, then I looked squarely into his eyes, and said, "I want Sean to meet me." I had initially practiced declaring in a crescendo, "I refuse to be hidden like an undignified whore. I am not a filler between Sean and other things in your life. I need him to acknowledge me as a person. I demand his respect," but this part of the speech became stuck in my throat. Matt looked at me, dumbfounded, until I almost started to believe that I had delivered my full speech, after all. Then he clenched his teeth, tightened his grip on my hand, and said, "Yes, you deserve better than this."


The taxi ride to his apartment was a blur. The original plan for tonight, it being New Year's Eve, had been that Matt would spend the early evening with me, then return home to Sean for dinner and to count down to 2013 over sizzling sex. Sean is not there when we arrive at the apartment, and we sit on the sofa to wait. Matt looks frighteningly dashing: his eyes blazing, his whole body tense, clearly deep in thought, preparing for something. He looks up as the sound of keys in the lock announces Sean's return. "Hey you..." Sean's lilting voice stops in its tracks as he opens the door wider and sees me seated next to his lover.


Find Anna Bayes at these places:

Her Amazon author page (

Her Goodreads author page (

Her Manic Readers author page (