Saturday, April 28, 2012

My First Interview!

Win a free copy of DREAMING DANGEROUSLY by entering the contest at Young Adult Book Haven!

I've been interviewed by Kristin the webmaster of Young Adult Book Haven. Check out the ten questions she asked me to get some insight into how I wrote Dreaming Dangerously. Then, enter to win!

Young Adult Book Haven Review

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Is your Indie Book Ready for Publication?

It seems like no matter what part of the writing process in which I find myself, I am always dealing with new ideas. Currently, while revising Darkness Descends, my second book, I continually devise new ideas and refine the old ones. That's what revision is all about, I realize. However, sometimes, I have to just shut off the noise and get the book finished.

So,if you are an indie author, like me, how do you know when your book is ready to publish?

Here's six ways to know you're book is ready:

1. You've read it and read it and read it again, and nothing makes you cringe (unless you're going for that effect).

2. You've cut/refined until your story sings on EVERY page.

3. All of your scenes make logical, cohesive sense within the realm of your world that you've created.

4. Every scene has tension, with maybe a bit of release, but not too much.

5. You've tortured your main characters enough, and you're ready to allow your readers to live vicariously through their adventures.

6. You listen to a friend who's read the book and given you specific feedback on what is good and what is crap. Eliminate the crap.

Crap can defined here as: anything that does not move the story along.

Since my book is still bothering me, i.e., making me cringe in places, I still have not completed my latest revision. The cast of this book has grown much bigger, and thus more complex. I don't want it to fall into melodramatic, after school special. (I write Young Adult fiction.)

However, it is almost there. It's the last 1/3 of the book that I need to refine. So close.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012


Pandemonium (Delirium, #2)Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book did not disappoint. Well-written and well-plotted. Lena changed so much in this book and really grew as a character. I really did not want her to open her heart to another person, but Lauren Oliver did a good job with showing how a person could actually be grieving someone and falling in love with someone else at the same time, blurring the lines between who that person really loves.

The ending chilled me, but I kind of predicted this would happen. The only thing that I didn't really get was Lena's mom. That part went by a little to fast, and I didn't really feel like Lena thought about that as much as she should have. Maybe another paragraph or so, not pages. But I do like Lauren's tighter writing in this book. It moves quickly and is full of action. Sometimes that's a trade-off.

Usually book 2 is just a means to get to book 3, throwing in more complications, which ultimately don't really mean a whole lot. But this book shows Lena's growth and strength of character. At first, I didn't like the switching back and forth of Now and Then, but once I got used to the book's structure, I loved that Oliver chose to tell the story this way. One thing I did miss was her quotes from the Book of Shhh with every chapter, but maybe that's because Lena isn't really reading it anymore.

I can't wait to see what Oliver has in store for us for book 3.

If you haven't read the Delirium series, you should!!! It's one of the best series I've read, right up there for me with Shiver, Hunger Games and Twilight.

View all my reviews

Monday, April 9, 2012

Learning How to Use Social Media

I am learning very quickly that social media is the direct pipeline to my audience. Without it, no one knows I've written a book or what that book is about. Before I published my novel, I started blogging, but never had many followers because, quite honestly, I didn't know a blogosphere from a black hole. Seriously.

Dreaming Dangerously would not have sold as many copies as it has WITHOUT social media. Most of my audience and buyers of my book are on the Internet.

There are so many ways to connect to your audience, but the most important way, is one reader at a time. Make that personal connection. Talk to people who follow you on Twitter, comment on Facebook or message you on Goodreads. Let each person know you care about his or her opinion and what they want from a writer, even if you don't happen to agree with the person. Give away a free eBook or two. That personal touch goes a long way. You are not just looking for people to buy ONE book. You are looking to build a relationship with your audience.

I'm currently learning how to use Twitter effectively. It's all a learning curve, but check out the Indie Book Collective at:
for some wonderful tips.