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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Writing Tip Wednesday--Updating Social Media

Welcome to Writing Tip Wednesday! Self-publishing offers writers another choice on the road to publication, whether they’re already traditionally published and/or e-press published, or unpublished. Although the author maintains control of the process, she also has a lot of hard work ahead of her. Education about self-publishing and the publishing industry is vital to a good product and creating a professional image.

Besides writing, authors must also work on the marketing and promotion aspects of publishing. Updates to the website, blog, and other social media can be as time consuming and labor intensive as writing the book. However, they’re a necessary part of the process and may increase discoverability (and sales).

Start with a list of all internet-related websites, pages, profiles, and personas.

As release nears, a cover reveal, blurbs, and excerpts can be posted to the author’s blog and Facebook fan page. Yes, a fan page rather than a profile. Although recent events have caused an amendment in Facebook’s “real name” policy, personal and professional posts are best kept separate.

Post book titles, release dates, covers, blurbs, and/or excerpts on the website. Release dates don’t have to be specific until the day is close. Example: Coming in 2015 or Coming in Spring 2015. As the date nears, gradually pinpoint a month and day.

Post teasers and information about the book on social media outlets like Facebook, Twitter, Google+, etc. Create Facebook and Yahoo book discussion groups if that’s of interest. Remember—choosing a few options and doing them well is better than doing them all poorly.

This is also a good time to update front and back matter in other self-published books. Add the new book to the “Other Books by the Author” page. The link can be added during step #14. Make any changes to the author bio and tackle mistakes found by readers and reviewers that haven’t been fixed.

Make note of partially completed tasks and keep a list of all the little jobs that will require more attention later in the process. Those memos to self will help avoid “oh, crap! I forgot to...” moments.

When all updates are finished or have been listed as to-be-completed at publishing time, check off #8!

The To-Do List
1) Finish the book. 
2) Polish and edit the book. 
3) Write taglines and blurbs. 
4) Create or purchase cover art. 
5) Purchase ISBNs, if using a single ISBN for all retailers using the same book format (print or e-book). 
6) Create front and back matter. 
7) Format for e-book and/or print. 
7.a.) Add images. 
7.b.) Create audio book. 
8) Update website, blog, and social media. 
9) Create metadata list.
10) Plan a marketing and promotion strategy.
11) Publish the book.
12) File copyright paperwork, if registering.
13) Add buy links to websites, blogs, and social media.
14) Implement marketing and promotion strategies.
15) Write the next book!


Be sure to check out the writing craft series, Writing Tip Wednesday: The Writing Craft Handbook, in e-book at Amazon and B&N and in print at Amazon and CreateSpace, and the writing career series, Writing Tip Wednesday: The Writing Career Handbook, in e-book at Amazon and B&N and in print at Amazon and CreateSpace.

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Monday, October 27, 2014

Author Spotlight + Giveaway--Kyra Jacobs

Welcome to Author Spotlights on Mondays! Kyra Jacobs, another Indiana author, is visiting today and sharing a peek at Flirting With Fire, the second book in her Hometown Heroes series. Be sure to check out my interview with her and comment for a chance to win a copy of her book!

Blurb:
Look, touch, but don’t fall in love.

Massage therapist Liz Williams lives by one rule: never date a client. A rule she’s never had trouble following until she lays hands on fireman playboy Torrunn MacKay. Trouble is, Liz’s sexy new client is dating her arch-rival at work…and has a strange habit of appearing just before the fire alarm sounds.
Firefighter Torrunn MacKay has got it made: killer job, downtown condo with a view, and hot blonde girlfriend with no more desire to tie the knot than he has. But the surprise attraction he feels toward his new masseuse is threatening to change all that. And what’s with the string of fires that seem to follow her everywhere?
Can Liz mind her table manners and keep Torrunn at arms’ length? Will Torrunn put his commitment fears aside to keep Liz safe? More than hearts will be in jeopardy when the two start Flirting with Fire.
CONTENT WARNING: Beware of darkened rooms, delicious firefighters, and desperate pyromaniacs.

Excerpt:
I stepped inside, closed the door quietly behind me, and shifted my gaze to the massage table. A long, still figure lay prone upon it, covered from the waist down by a single, white sheet. And for just a moment, I forgot to breathe.

The body before me was, in a word, beautiful.

With his face hidden in the headrest, I freely drank in the view. Torrunn had thick dark hair, kept short yet stylish. Muscular arms lay relaxed by his sides, a dusting of dark hair on their lower halves visible from where I stood. His legs were parted slightly, the small mounds of his heels giving way to the straight lines of lean legs.

My eyes roved along his long, lean legs toward the next swell of the sheet—a squeezable butt if I ever saw one. And trust me, I’d seen enough in my day to know which were worthy of squeezing. Not that I ever would. No, not ever with a client.

But no one said I couldn’t enjoy the view, and this was a massage therapist jackpot.

It took me another moment to register why he looked so much different than all of my earlier clients, even aside from the amazing physique. And then it hit me—the table’s slate blue blanket, which usually sat atop the thin white sheet and served to blur the outlines of my clients, was missing. A quick scan of the room found it neatly folded and set upon the room’s small side chair beneath what clothes my new client had been wearing.

Apparently, Torrunn ran hot.

Buy Link:
http://www.amazon.com/Flirting-Fire-Hometown-Heroes-Book-ebook/dp/B00LBAMNT4/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1403818822&sr=1-1

Interview:
Me: Do you see writing as a career?
Kyra: Yes. Will it be my only career? Not until I sell a few more books. ;-)

Me: This book is the second in a series. Do you prefer to write single title or series? Why?
Kyra: Great question. To be honest, nearly every book I’ve written or plotted to date has had the potential to go either way. I prefer writing series, though, because I grow attached to my characters and enjoy bringing them back into future storylines. That preference is also a reflection, I suppose, on my own reading preferences. If I fall in love with a set of characters, I’m thrilled when our time together can continue beyond a single book.

Me: Is there a message in your novel you hope to convey to your readers?
Kyra: Hmm, a message… Well, there were a few, actually. The first was “be true to yourself”. Liz Williams, the heroine in FWF, historically played the role of peace-keeper in her relationships. Over time, that resulted not only in her unhappiness but also with a lot of frustration toward her best friend. Once she learns to speak up, she gains self-confidence and a bit more respect. The second message was “stop living in fear and start living.” As Liz warned Torrunn, life’s too short to waste it living in fear. ‘Nuff said.

Me: I usually get plot ideas in the shower and while driving. When/where does inspiration strike you?
Kyra: That’s funny – those are the two places I get broadsided by ideas as well. I’ve actually started looking forward to 1- and 2-hour road trips because I know my brain will kick into overdrive as the miles flash by. The showers only seem to help with plotting, though, if I’m still half-asleep when I climb in.

Me: What new stories are you working on?
Kyra: Right now I’m plugging away at book 3 in the Hometown Heroes series. Lots of familiar faces from the first two books, and of course a few new ones thrown in for good (and/or bad) measure. Can’t wait to see how it comes out. So far, it’s got the makings of the best in the series. And once again this book set right here in Indiana—Fort Wayne, to be precise. It’s so much fun highlighting my hometown!

Bio:
Kyra Jacobs is an extroverted introvert who writes of love and mystery in the Midwest. When this Hoosier native is not pounding out scenes for her next book, she's likely outside, elbow-deep in snapdragons or spending quality time with her sports-loving family. Kyra also loves golf, Guitar Hero, and thinking through plot twists while out on a good run. Be sure to stop by her website www.KyraJacobs.wordpress.com for links to connect with her on social media. Kyra lives in northern Indiana with her husband and two children.

Links:
Website: http://www.KyraJacobs.wordpress.com
Blog: http://www.IndianaWonderer.wordpress.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KyraJacobsBooks
Twitter: https://twitter.com/KyraJacobsBooks
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/Kyra_Jacobs
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Kyra-Jacobs/e/B00E5PIJ04/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_pop_1

Thanks to Kyra for dropping in today and to all our visitors! Remember to comment by midnight EDT on Wednesday, October 29, for a chance to win a Kindle copy of Flirting With Fire!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Writing Tip Wednesday--Creating Audio Books

Welcome to Writing Tip Wednesday! Self-publishing offers writers another choice on the road to publication, whether they’re already traditionally published and/or e-press published, or unpublished. Although the author maintains control of the process, she also has a lot of hard work ahead of her. Education about self-publishing and the publishing industry is vital to a good product and creating a professional image.

The content is ready! The book is written, the polished manuscript has been to an editor, critique partners, and beta-readers, the tagline and blurbs are written, a contract for cover art has been signed, ISBNs are purchased, and front and back matter are complete. The e-book and print files are ready to upload.

Another publishing option is Creating Audio Books.

Self-published authors can create audio books through ACX (Audiobook Creation Exchange) at Amazon. The process can take several weeks to several months, so allow for that time when scheduling release dates.

First and foremost, the author must hold the audio rights to create and sell an audiobook. Authors with publisher contracts sometimes retain those rights. Check the contract carefully for details and consult a contract lawyer, if necessary. Self-published authors hold all rights unless some have already been sold, such as movie rights.

1) Set up a profile for your book title on ACX. The Title Profile contains a description of your book, the type of narration desired, and a short excerpt to be used for auditions. The profile is used to advertise the “job” to producers (narrators and studio professionals) and allows them to submit their auditions. An audiobook publisher may also make an offer to buy the audio rights directly from the author.

Casting calls are another option. Listen to narrators’ samples and invite a selected few to audition for the project. ACX facilitates auditions and proposals, allowing the author to screen producers prior to contracting with one.

Besides auditions, the author can opt to self-narrate. This requires a good speaking voice, access to the proper recording equipment, and a studio-type setting to prevent background noise. The question to ask—Will it sound professional?

2) After reviewing auditions, the author then chooses a producer or the author may elect to accept an offer to purchase the audio rights. In either case, if both parties accept the terms of the agreement, a contract is signed. The author and producer may agree to a one-time production fee or shared royalties. Both are commonplace. When audio rights are sold to an outside party, ACX is then no longer a part of the production or distribution process.

3) If the author signs a contract with a producer on ACX, production begins. This process can take about 3-8 weeks. When the first 15 minutes of the audiobook is complete, the producer makes it available to the author to review. Review the narrator’s performance and check for recording quality. Edits and guidance are a crucial part of creating a good audiobook, and the author’s input is vital.

4) Final approval is next. Once edits are completed, listen to the entire book. Although most times the production is then finished, once in a while the author may not be satisfied with the product. Production can be cancelled, but the author may incur a fee for cancellation, depending on the specific problem and/or situation.

5) Once the final product is approved, the author chooses exclusive or non-exclusive ACX distribution rights. The royalty rate for exclusive is higher, but the author is limited to the retail outlets offered by ACX. Prices are set by the retailers, based on the time-length of the book.

6) Promote the audiobook through social media.

7) Authors currently receive a monthly statement and royalty payments from Audible. If royalty sharing was chosen as the producer’s payment option, payments from Audible will reflect that.

The ACX website has lots of detailed information on how to get started and what each step involves. It has samples of contracts and agreements as well as a fairly comprehensive Q&A page.

Check off #7.b. on the To-Do List and take a deep breath. The focus now changes to marketing and promotion!

The To-Do List
1) Finish the book. 
2) Polish and edit the book. 
3) Write taglines and blurbs. 
4) Create or purchase cover art. 
5) Purchase ISBNs, if using a single ISBN for all retailers using the same book format (print or e-book). 
6) Create front and back matter. 
7) Format for e-book and/or print. 
7.a.) Add images. 
7.b.) Create audio book. 
8) Update website, blog, and social media.
9) Create metadata list.
10) Plan a marketing and promotion strategy.
11) Publish the book.
12) File copyright paperwork, if registering.
13) Add buy links to websites, blogs, and social media.
14) Implement marketing and promotion strategies.
15) Write the next book!

Be sure to check out the writing craft series, Writing Tip Wednesday: The Writing Craft Handbook, in e-book at Amazon and B&N and in print at Amazon and CreateSpace, and the writing career series, Writing Tip Wednesday: The Writing Career Handbook, in e-book at Amazon and B&N and in print at Amazon and CreateSpace.

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Monday, October 20, 2014

Author Spotlight--Jim Cangany

Welcome to Author Spotlights on Mondays! I have a very special guest this week. IRWA's own kilted Token Dude, Jim Cangany, writes sweet romance, and the final installment in his North Star trilogy, Wish Upon a Star, is now available! He's donating a portion of his royalties from the sale of Wish Upon a Star to the Avon Foundation for Women's Breast Cancer Crusade, so pick up a copy!

Blurb:
She's battling cancer. He's battling demons from the past. How will their love survive?
An unlikely love. An unseen enemy. A lesson in faith.

Annie and E.J. are on top of the world. Her concert world tour as Cassandra Lawrence was a smashing success and they've just announced their engagement to the world. Now that they're settled in at Annie's Northern California estate, it's time to relax and enjoy life. Until E.J. gets a call from her with news that's as devastating as it is unbelievable.
Annie has breast cancer.
Their love is tested in unimaginable ways as chemotherapy robs Annie of her health and her hair, but not hope. She holds on to the hope of beating the cancer and marrying the man she loves. While the key for Annie is to hold onto that hope, their future together may be lost forever unless E.J. can learn to let go. For its not until he can learn to forgive himself and let go of the guilt that haunts him that he can truly move forward and be the man Annie needs him to be.
Will the chemotherapy, mastectomy and radiation be enough to help Annie beat the cancer? Will E.J. face down the demons that haunt his past in time to save their love? Will they ever get that happily ever after Annie so desperately wants? While trust and faith in each other has gotten them this far, they'll need one more thing to make it to their finish line--hope.

Excerpt:
After a brief interview and the routine temperature and blood pressure check, the nurse left. A few minutes later, there was a knock on the door. In the blink of an eye, a razor-wire knot formed in my gut. Here we go.

The door opened and a woman about Annie’s size stepped in. She had shoulder length, brown hair that was streaked with gray. Her hazel eyes glittered when she smiled.

"Ms. Wilson, I’m Dr. Ann Furman. It’s a pleasure to meet you." They shook hands and Annie introduced me. Something about the doctor’s demeanor put me at ease, and I got the sense it was the same for Annie. Maybe it was her warm smile, or the fact that her sweater had little yellow ducks woven into it.

Annie had designated me as her official note taker, so I focused on writing things down while the doctor went through Annie’s medical history. When that was completed, the doctor pulled out two x-rays and hung them from a backlit exam fixture.

She flipped a switch and the x-rays lit up to reveal images of Annie’s breasts. With a pen she pointed out two masses, one very small, the other larger, in her right breast. Each mass was identified with a tiny, bright square.

"These are images from the MRI you had taken. As you can see, there are two tumors. The bright spots are markers that were put in place when the masses were biopsied. The markers can help us identify the locations of the tumors as your treatment progresses."

She pointed to the other image. "In your left breast, there’s a single tumor here. This is where I need to be honest with you. The fact that there are multiple tumors is indicative of a malignant form of breast cancer."

"Form of breast cancer?" Annie’s voice came out uneven.

Dr. Furman nodded. "Yes, there are many forms or types of breast cancer. The name of this type is Invasive Ductile Carcinoma."

Annie steepled her fingers in front of her while I flipped to a new page. "All right, what does that mean?"

"Invasive Ductile Carcinoma is a very common type of cancer that grows rapidly, but is very treatable."

"In what way?"

"The standard course of treatment at this stage would involve chemotherapy, mastectomy, reconstruction, and potentially radiation."

A chill came over me as my pen dug into the paper. This sounded bad.

Really bad.

Buy Links:
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00N81EVUI
Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/wish-upon-a-star-14
iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/wish-upon-a-star/id914651535?mt=11

Bio:
A lifelong resident of the State of Indiana, Jim Cangany is proud to call himself a Hoosier. The youngest of eight children, he grew up in a household full of books and people. Thanks to the influence of his older siblings, Jim gravitated toward fantasy and sci-fi when looking for something to read. He wrote his first story at age fourteen. A school project, The Magic Coin was a fantasy that involved a king, some bad guys, and, not surprisingly, a magical token.

These days, Jim writes romance on the sweet end. If you ask him what is a guy like him is doing writing romance, he'll reply, "Those are the stories in my head." A believer that the world has enough doom and gloom, he likes stories with a happy ending, regardless of genre. He lives in Indianapolis with his wonderful wife Nancy and his two sons, Seamus and Aidan.

Links:
Website: http://jimcangany.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Jim-Cangany-Author/193385657452953
Twitter: @jimcangany
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B00DEWZUJM

Congratulations to Jim for his new release and to his wife, Nancy, for five years of being cancer-free!

Be sure to check out the rest of Annie's and E.J.'s journey with Fallen Star and Lucky Star while you're buying Wish Upon a Star!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Writing Tip Wednesday--Adding Images to Books

Welcome to Writing Tip Wednesday! Self-publishing offers writers another choice on the road to publication, whether they’re already traditionally published and/or e-press published, or unpublished. Although the author maintains control of the process, she also has a lot of hard work ahead of her. Education about self-publishing and the publishing industry is vital to a good product and creating a professional image.

The content is ready! The book is written, the polished manuscript has been to an editor, critique partners, and beta-readers, the tagline and blurbs are written, a contract for cover art has been signed, ISBNs are purchased, and front and back matter are complete. The e-book and print files are ready to upload.

What about Adding Images to Books?

Cookbooks, children’s books, and many other fiction and nonfiction books have photos, screenshots, and artwork on the interior pages. Even adding a publisher logo to the title page requires the ability to add images to the document.

Writing Tip Wednesday: The Self-Publishing Handbook will be my first attempt at adding pictures to the content of an e-book and print book. I’ve researched the topic of adding images, and, much to my dismay, almost every source gave different instructions and recommended different file types and/or sizes. So, I’ll be experimenting when formatting time comes around.

Three elements of adding images are consistent from every resource I looked at.

1) Use Insert-->Picture-->Photo-->Picture from File to add pictures. Never copy and paste an image into the document. Pictures can be screenshots taken with built-in screenshot software or with SnagIt, a free download. Use Photoshop or another program to crop, adjust color, and change the resolution to 150 pixels per inch.

2) Wrap-around text does not work in self-published book formatting. This means all text must be above or below the inserted picture. No text can be to the left, right, or both.

3) The picture should be centered using the Format-->Paragraph control. Be sure to eliminate any first-line indentation, as this will cause the picture to be slightly off-center.

Are you ready for the conflicting information?

1) Some sources recommend using PNG files, while most others say JPG. Images can be converted to JPG and PNG format from PDF format using the Save As command, or convertmyimage.com is recommended by one resource.

2) Size recommendations vary. The consensus seems to be the picture can’t be larger than the smallest e-reader device’s screen will allow. The numbers range from 400 pixels x 300 pixels to 500 pixels x 600 pixels to 560 pixels x 740 pixels to 600 pixels x 800 pixels. One source suggested limiting to the size of each picture to 127KB. Another recommended limiting the size to 5MB for the complete file. Still another says to make the images smaller using Format Picture-->Size-->Shrink Image (for PC) or Format-->Format Object (for Mac). This source also recommends using webresizer.com/resize to make the image the correct size. Images can also be compressed through the Format Picture/Object command.

3) Some resources say to save the document as Web Page, Filtered and convert it to a zip file for upload to retail outlets.

I’m certain I’ll end up with a headache when I tackle adding screenshots to help guide self-publishers through the process! However, the handbook will have new information based on my experience—minus the cursing that may occur.

If you’re lucky enough to have adding images figured out, check off #7.a. on the to-do list and please share your expertise! What worked? What didn’t work? Does size matter?

The To-Do List
1) Finish the book. 
2) Polish and edit the book. 
3) Write taglines and blurbs. 
4) Create or purchase cover art. 
5) Purchase ISBNs, if using a single ISBN for all retailers using the same book format (print or e-book). 
6) Create front and back matter. 
7) Format for e-book and/or print. 
7.a.) Add images. 
7.b.) Create audio book.
8) Update website, blog, and social media.
9) Create metadata list.
10) Plan a marketing and promotion strategy.
11) Publish the book.
12) File copyright paperwork, if registering.
13) Add buy links to websites, blogs, and social media.
14) Implement marketing and promotion strategies.
15) Write the next book!

Be sure to check out the writing craft series, Writing Tip Wednesday: The Writing Craft Handbook, in e-book at Amazon and B&N and in print at Amazon and CreateSpace, and the writing career series, Writing Tip Wednesday: The Writing Career Handbook, in e-book at Amazon and B&N and in print at Amazon and CreateSpace.

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Monday, October 13, 2014

Author Spotlight + Giveaway--Abbie Carlisle

Welcome to Author Spotlights on Mondays! Abbie Carlisle is my guest this week, and she's here to talk about Elijah's Vow, the first book in The Order of the Mist series, and share some insight into her writing process. She's also giving away a copy of Elijah's Vow, so be sure to check out how to enter at the end of the post!

Blurb:
Jasmine Tate, an Editor from New York, relaxes on her first vacation in years until a tall, dark, handsome stranger throws her into a world of power and tantalising passion. She realizes that humans are not the only race in existence. Her life shatters around her as their worlds collide and everything she’s ever believed in is destroyed as her true identity is laid out before her.
Elijah, The Order’s leader, has never known true love. Tormented by his past, he has lived only to protect his race, but when he meets Jasmine his heart is captivated by her beauty and he becomes obsessed with his possession and desire for her.
As a war begins between The Order and the Phoenix League, he must face an enemy that is intent on destroying everything that matters to him, but can he protect the one thing that has become his destiny?

Excerpt:
The echoing sound of the shot made Jasmine jump and she screamed out in terror as the glass from the window shattered and flew into the cabin. She fell against the table as pain seared through her shoulder and cried out Elijah’s name as she hit the floor. The excruciating agony that travelled across her shoulders had her gasping. She tried to focus past the waves of intense pain shooting through her. She could feel herself becoming ice cold as Elijah kicked the table away from her. Blood soaked through the jumper and she held her hand tight on her shoulder, pain throbbing from the impact of her fall. Elijah stared at her in horror. His face was red with fury as he dropped to his knees and gently lifted her into his arms. She was deathly pale as tears streaked down her cheeks.

“I have to see how badly you’re hurt, sweetheart,” Elijah spoke as he pulled the jumper to the side to take a closer look at her shoulder.

Jasmine cried out at as the jumper pulled at the wound.

“Luca,” Elijah shouted, so loud it made Jasmine jump from the drowsiness that was beginning to cloud her mind.

Luca almost took the door off its hinges as he stormed through and into the living area. He stopped dead in his tracks as he stared at the horrific sight before him.

“I need you to help her. Take the pain away and help with the wound. She’s been shot,” Elijah said as Luca ran behind the couch to reach Jasmine.

“I will need to touch her. You okay with that?” Luca asked.

“Do whatever is necessary to take the pain away and help her,” Elijah said, thanking the stars for Luca’s gift.
Luca gently laid his hands on Jasmine’s clammy, shaking body.

Her sobs tore at Elijah as panic slashed through him.

As Luca’s warm hands began to glow gently, Jasmine felt a gentle calm float through her as she felt the pain begin to dissipate and her body gradually begin to relax. She closed her eyes as she savoured the relief until she could no longer feel anything and her mind blacked out.

“What the hell happened, Luca?” Elijah held Jasmine close as Luca continued to heal the wound.

The shot had gone straight through her right shoulder but had luckily not hit any bones. The wound slowly closed as Luca moved his hands over each side of the wound.

“There was a shooter out in the woods. He had a rifle and fired off a shot before I could get to him. I’m so sorry, Elijah,” Luca replied.

“She knew he was there. She felt him,” Elijah stated as he stared at the paleness of her skin. She was so small and fragile and the thought that she may have been killed made his heart cry out.

“Did you kill him?” Elijah asked as Luca moved his hands away, the shimmering glow dissipating.

“I hit him pretty hard but I’m not sure that he’s dead. Bloody hope so, the fucking bastard deserves to be.”

“We need to get the males here now. If more of them arrive then we need to make sure they don’t get a second chance. She’s everything to me and I will not live without her!” Elijah could not imagine a world in which she didn’t exist. He loved her with all his heart.

“I understand. I’ve called Jonah and they are on their way. I need to fix the window, though. She’s cold and that gaping hole will only make her worse. Keep her warm and I’ll go get the duvet from the bedroom and you can wrap her in that.” Luca ran up the stairs two at a time, grabbed the duvet from the bedroom, and returned, handing it to Elijah.

“We have to find out who they are. It’s the only way to keep her safe. Once we know who we’re dealing with then we will go out, find them, and destroy them,” Elijah said. He was struggling, trying to control the anger that was growing out of control as he stared at her long eyelashes that framed her beautiful closed eyes.

Elijah lifted Jasmine and gently laid her on the couch. The blood from her wound soaked his hands as he pulled the duvet over her and placed a cushion under her head. “Go out and make sure that bastard is dead. Then try and find some wood to fix the window. I’ll stay here and make sure she’s warm. Thank you, Luca, for saving her.” He was utterly in debt to the male.

“She’s your female and we would all protect her with our lives. She is part of our world now and one of us,” Luca replied. There had never been a female at the compound and he had liked her from the moment he’d met her. He’d been glad that he’d been able to help her as he smiled at Elijah. He was a lucky man. He turned and walked out of the cabin, closing the door behind him. Maybe one day he would have a female of his own to love and care for. The thought made him smile as he ran into the cold dark forest.

Buy Links:
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Elijahs-Order-Siren-Publishing-Classic-ebook/
http://www.amazon.com/Elijahs-Order-Siren-Publishing-Classic-ebook/
http://www.bookstrand.com/elijahs-vow
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/Elijah-s-Vow

Interview:
Me: What inspired you to write your first book?
Abbie: After being introduced to Paranormal Erotic Romance by my twin sister, I was hooked on stories of passion and possession. I read books from a range of Authors who inspired me to put my ideas in print. With great support from my family, I was able to fulfil my passion to write my current novel ‘Elijah’s Vow’.

Me: Do you see writing as a career?
Abbie: As I work full time and have a family, I write in any spare time I have. I would love to be able to spend all my time writing and hope in the future to be able to commit to writing full time.

Me: This book is the first in a series Do you prefer to write single title or series? Why?
Abbie: I prefer to write series stories. As I read books from other Authors, I find that I want to know more about the other characters in their books. Writing series allows for you to build a world of exciting characters that can have their own subsequent books, each telling their story and the adversity they face to find and protect the ones they love.

Me: Give us some insight into your main character. What makes him special?
Abbie: The main character in my book is Elijah. He is the leader of The Order and is strong and powerful. He puts his duty to protect other before his own needs and shows respect and honour in all his decisions. As he meets his mate, he learns to love, trust and accept the pain of his past to allow him to have a future. He is brave and is prepared to lay his life down to protect the ones he loves.

Me: How did you come up with the title?
Abbie: I’ve planned to make each book in the series delve into the lives of each male member of The Order. Elijah is the first main character in the series and promises to love and protect his mate. He also vows to The Order to lead them with honour as their King. The title represented the strength and commitment Elijah has to his race.

Me: What’s your favorite sub-genre (contemporary, sci-fi, etc.) to write? To read?
Abbie: I love to read paranormal romance. Authors such as Laurenn Dohner and Lora Leigh are able to create exciting characters you can relate to. Their books inspired me to want to create a fictional world full of romance and conflict for others to enjoy.

Me: I usually get plot ideas in the shower and while driving. When/where does inspiration strike you?
Abbie: I can be sitting watching television or lying in bed when ideas suddenly burst into my mind. I always keep a notebook by my bed so I can write them down. Most of my inspiration comes when I talk to my family about settings and plots for my planned books. It’s a surreal feeling when you talk to them about one direction of a character and then you find that you have changed where their story is heading into a completely different direction. Their ideas can be invaluable and inspiring.

Me: What new stories are you working on?
Abbie: The current book I am working on is ‘Jonah’s Salvation’. He is a Lord of the Mist and is Elijah’s second in command. His story is full of emotional conflict and Jonah must learn to open his heart to allow himself to love. When faced with a choice to give the one he loves what she most desires, he has to decide whether to put her life in danger to give her what she wants. The choices he makes could destroy his world.

Bio:
Abbie Carlisle lives in Kent, England with her wonderfully understanding husband and 3 children. She spends every spare hour either with her family or, with the immense support from her twin sister, her other passion ‘writing’. For years she had dreamed of writing her own paranormal novel and then her first novel was born. Come visit ‘The Order of the Mist’ at abbiecarlisle.com

Links:
Website: abbiecarlisle.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/abbie.carlisle3

Thanks for stopping by! For a chance to win an e-book copy of Elijah’s Vow, like Abbie's Facebook page and comment on Blog post on Facebook with "like" number. Good luck!

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Writing Tip Wednesday--Formatting for Print Part 3

Welcome to Writing Tip Wednesday! Self-publishing offers writers another choice on the road to publication, whether they’re already traditionally published and/or e-press published, or unpublished. Although the author maintains control of the process, she also has a lot of hard work ahead of her. Education about self-publishing and the publishing industry is vital to a good product and creating a professional image.

The content is ready! The book is written, the polished manuscript has been to an editor, critique partners, and beta-readers, the tagline and blurbs are written, a contract for cover art has been signed, ISBNs are purchased, and front and back matter are complete. The e-book files are ready to upload.

Formatting for Print is one of the most patience-testing part of self-publishing. Break it into smaller tasks to avoid frustration. After completing the page/text formatting and adding title/author headers, page numbers are next. These instructions are for the Mac version of Adobe Acrobat Pro.

Begin by opening the PDF in Adobe Acrobat Pro. This isn’t automatic, so click the file once to highlight it and use the File drop-down menu to choose the Open With option. Choose Adobe Acrobat Pro.

To view side-by-side pages, go to View-->Page Display-->Two Page View. This will help with odd/even page identification. Even pages are on the left. Odd pages are on the right.

On the right side of the Acrobat window, click Tools. Select Pages-->Header and Footer--> Add Header and Footer.

Even and odd pages require different settings. For the even pages:
1) Choose font, size, and margin. The font and size may or may not match the page-text and/or title/author font and size, depending on preference. Top margin is usually .7 inches and bottom margin is usually .5 inches. Left and right margins are usually .5 inches. Left Header Text should be set as <<1>>. All other header/footer text boxes should be empty.

2) Click Page Number and Date Format. Enter the starting page number. For a book with a title page, copyright page, dedication page, and blank page before the beginning of the first chapter, enter 6. Remember—the first page of each new chapter doesn’t have a page number.

3) Click Page Range Options. Select Pages from and enter the starting page number (6 in the example in #2) and ending page number. Remember—page numbers normally end on the last page of the last chapter. Select Even pages.

4) Click Save Settings. Save the header in case of mistakes that need to be corrected later. To save it as something new, give it a new name and write down the new name. The program will open with it the next time. Or replace old settings by giving the header the same name as an existing setting. Tell the program to replace when it asks.

5) Click OK.

Repeat this process to create a header setting for odd pages. Click Add Header and Footer. Do NOT click the replace option! Click Add New (changes can be made to an existing header here too).
For Step 1), the top margin is usually .7 inches, the bottom margin is usually .5 inches, and the right margin is usually .5 inches—same as the even-page settings. The left margin is usually 1 inch (to allow for the gutter). Right Header Text should be set as <<1>>. All other header/footer text boxes should be empty.
For Step 2), enter the same starting number page as was entered for even pages.
For Step 3), select Odd pages.
For Step 4), the same instructions apply, but give the odd-page header a different name from the even-page header.
For Step 5), click OK.

Step 6) Page numbers have been added to all pages between the start and end page numbers. To remove page numbers from the first page of each chapter or section, go to the Tools window. Select Content-->Edit Document Text. Click on the text and use the Delete key to remove any unwanted page numbers.

Step 7) Save the document. Click the Save icon or go to File-->Save.

Step 8) Open the document in Preview to check for mistakes. Make corrections in Adobe Acrobat Pro and save again.

Check off #7 on the To-Do List, but be prepared for a couple side topics before tackling #8. In addition to page/text formatting, title/author headers, and page numbers, formatting for e-book and print may also include adding images to the internal content. Audio books are another publishing option.

More options?!?!

The To-Do List
1) Finish the book. 
2) Polish and edit the book. 
3) Write taglines and blurbs. 
4) Create or purchase cover art. 
5) Purchase ISBNs, if using a single ISBN for all retailers using the same book format (print or e-book). 
6) Create front and back matter. 
7) Format for e-book and/or print. 
8) Update website, blog, and social media.
9) Create metadata list.
10) Plan a marketing and promotion strategy.
11) Publish the book.
12) File copyright paperwork, if registering.
13) Add buy links to websites, blogs, and social media.
14) Implement marketing and promotion strategies.
15) Write the next book!

Be sure to check out the writing craft series, Writing Tip Wednesday: The Writing Craft Handbook, in e-book at Amazon and B&N and in print at Amazon and CreateSpace, and the writing career series, Writing Tip Wednesday: The Writing Career Handbook, in e-book at Amazon and B&N and in print at Amazon and CreateSpace.

Mellanie Szereto
Romance...With A Kick!