Today, iBooks launched a major worldwide merchandising feature that includes 100 boxed sets, each priced at only 99c. And I'm excited to be part of it!! Mark Coker, founder of Smashwords invited me to take part. And so, together with five of my favourite fantasy/paranormal authors, we put together a boxed set specifically for this incredible month-long iBooks promotion. Here it is...
Six enthralling paranormal novels from six bestselling authors who know how
to weave a gripping fantasy tale. From brooding vampires, ghosts and witches,
to fallen angels, shifters and fae. Be enchanted with dark romances
and sweeping adventures to take you away from the everyday.
Here are some things I wish I'd known before I started outas an author. I used to think there was this single magic formula for writing, but I don't think there is. It's a combination of grit, hard work and inspiration. Here are my thoughts on what you need to know ...
1. You can’t wait for inspiration to strike. If you want to be an author, you need to have the discipline to sit down and write, even if you ‘don’t feel like it’.
2. Sales don’t come instantly (unless you’re very lucky … or you sold your soul to the devil). You have to work for them.
3. Once you’ve finished writing your first book, that’s when the hard work starts. I’m not really selling it to you am I? Let me try and be a bit more positive in point number 4.
4. There’s nothing quite like the feeling when you’re writing a scene and the characters’ emotions spill over into your own. You can end up laughing or crying with your own creations – that’s a pretty amazing feeling!
5. There is no ‘one way’ to write a book. Everyone has different methods. You can plot methodically, or go with the flow. My way of writing lies somewhere in between the two.
6. When writing a book, there always comes a point (usually around a third of the way in) when it becomes the hardest slog on earth, and you’ll wonder why you started writing it, and the whole thing feels like this giant waste of time. At this point, it’s advisable to have a good cry/punch a wall/ eat a whole jumbo size bar of chocolate/get drunk. Now you’ve got that out of your system, you must push on through the pain barrier and kiss and make up with your masterpiece-of-a-manuscript. After a chapter or two of hard slog, you’ll be back in love with it again.
7. Beta readers are invaluable. I have input from betas during and after the writing process. People who can look at your manuscript with fresh eyes, spot gaping plot holes, tell you your pacing is off, point out that your characters aren’t believable enough etc etc. And no, your mum is not a good choice for a beta reader.
8. Good coffee.
9. Get a thick skin. Once you finish your book, you’ll have all manner of people telling you, you suck. From editors with red pens. To gatekeepers with heart-piercing stock phrases: ‘Thank you for your submission. While we do consider it to have merit, unfortunately we ….’ But possibly the worst and most disheartening moment is your first 1 star review. Or even worse – the pompous 3 star reviewer who tells you that he/she is a writer and would’ve written it like xyz, not like your crazy-ass xyf. Learn and move on. It’s not personal.
10. Don’t always be analysing the sales and marketing and craft aspects of writing a book. Allow yourself to wallow in your scenes and step into your characters’ skins. Have fun with the plots and delight in wicked twists. Yes, writing a book is really hard work, but it’s also a wonderful experience. And there’s nothing quite like that incredible feeling of achievement when you type:
Feel free to leave a comment with your own writing tips/experiences . . .
A virtual scavenger hunt through twenty-two fictional dystopias.
Friday, July 18 at 6:00pm (EST) - Sunday, July 20
at 6:00pm (EST)
I'm participating in an online
scavenger hunt that will send participants on a virtual odyssey through
twenty-two dystopian futures in search of the answers they need to win. The
Hunt is on for one weekend only, although there is no time-limit for completing
Intrepid scavengers must solve clues at each
of the dystopian author stops as they progress through the course. The twenty-two
participating authors all have books included in three dystopian boxed
sets - What Tomorrow May Bring, A Taste of Tomorrow, and Shattered Worlds.
"Indie publishing is often a solitary
experience. All of these authors coming together to work toward a common goal
is an extraordinary thing,” said author Tony Bertauski, curator of What Tomorrow May Bring. “The enthusiasm
for an engaging, communal effort like this scavenger hunt shows the willingness
of indie authors to share their fans, and that can only be a good thing for
THE WINNER WILL NAME CHARACTERS AND TITLE FOR AN INTRIGUING
In a rare instance of collaborative
story-telling, nineteen of the authors will write a progressive short story
over nineteen days. Each author will have one day to write between 500-1000
words before passing the story on to the next author to create a collective
vision of a new, dark future. The winner of The Hunt will name characters and
contribute elements to create this dystopian world, and all participants in The
Hunt will receive an advance copy of the story for an exclusive period before
it is made available as a free download.
THE WINNER WILL ALSO WIN SIGNED COPIES OF EACH AUTHOR'S BOOK!
Those who complete the scavenger hunt will
be entered into a random draw, and for each correct answer collected along the
way they will receive an additional chance to win. Along with the naming
opportunity, the Grand Prize also includes a signed copy of each author’s book
that is included in the boxed sets, an ebook of all the boxed sets, and the
first copy of the progressive story they themselves inspired. During The Hunt,
the authors will offer up their own exclusive material, sneak peeks, contests,
and giveaways at their individual stops on The Hunt, giving all scavengers
multiple chances to win bonus prizes
The authors participating in The Hunt
include best-selling, award-winning and emerging writers from the United
States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. While their dystopian tales might be
bleak, cynical, or despairing visions of the future, they ultimately carry
messages of hope.
HUNT FOR TOMORROW will begin HERE on Friday July 18 at 6:00pm (EST) and ends on Sunday, July 20 at 6:00pm (EST).
The Hunt is
open to scavengers around the world; there is no cost to enter and one grand
prize winner will be selected at random from all eligible entries.