Sunday, September 29, 2013

Forgive Me!

Forgive me guys! I’ve been MIA from this blog for some time, and I genuinely feel bad about that. There’s no real excuse as to why I was gone other than lack of ideas. On this blog I want to be insightful, lend a helping hand to the aspiring writers that read this blog in hopes of learning something new that will help them along in their careers. But in reality there isn’t much left to be said that hasn’t been said already by all the other amazing writers on this blog. 

So, here’s my dilemma. I want to share what knowledge I have on being a published author. I want to be that kind of guy who gives sage-like advice for everyone in need of it. A part of me thought that after a year of having my work out there, jumping the hoops of getting them out there for everyone to read, that I’d know everything I needed to know. A part of me thought I’d have the experience to pass along by now. But that was a very naïve dream. (I’m young, I can get cocky, sue me.)

The truth is, I’m STILL learning. I’m still trying to figure out the best ways to promote and get my book into the hands of readers. I’m still learning to juggle promoting, networking, reviewing, AND writing the next book. It’s a constant battle, and sometimes I fear it. But I never shy away, no matter what. Because it’s what I love to do. And in the end I love that I was wrong about thinking I’d have it mastered by now. I’m still just a student; we all are, just in varying degrees.

I’m still a newbie, and I have a LONG way to go before I can say I’ve got some experience.
Michael Loring.


Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Cover Reveal: MEANT FOR HER by Raine Thomas

Meant for Her
A New Adult Contemporary Romance
Raine Thomas

Cover design by Regina Wamba of
Cover photos by Kelsey Kukal-Keeton of K Keeton Designs


Photographer Sierra Stratton views the world through a lens all her own. She has an uncanny sense about people, something that often causes her trouble. When she meets the sexy and brooding Evan Dorsey, her intuition tells her he's suffering, and she wants to be the one to help him.

Evan isn't open to help from anyone, however. His focus is on his Major League career and making himself as marketable as possible for his upcoming free agency. He plans to ride out the season in Atlanta and then sign with another team, away from the painful memories that haunt him.

Someone's eager to send him on his way, too. Between anonymous threats and equipment sabotage, it's clear he's earned himself an enemy along the way. To him, it's one more sign that he's right to move on.

But Sierra threatens his conviction. Her contagious smile proves hard to resist, as does her kiss. She tempts him in ways he never anticipated, making him question his plans for the first time. If he's not careful, she might just convince him that he's meant for her.

Coming October 17, 2013

Add it to your to-read list on Goodreads

Check out For Everly on Amazon and Barnes and Noble and get to know some of the characters making appearances in Meant for Her!

Raine Thomas

Brief author bio: Raine Thomas is the author of bestselling YA and NA romantic fiction, including the award-winning Estilorian series. She's a proud member of Romance Writers of America and is a contributing blogger to The Writer's Voice. When she isn't planning weddings, writing, or glued to social networking sites, she can usually be found on one of Florida's beautiful beaches with her husband and daughter or crossing the border to visit with her Canadian friends and relatives.

Ways readers can connect with Raine:

Twitter (http://twitter/Raine_Thomas)
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Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Evanescent A Broken Novel Release day sign up!

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email Anna

About the book

Her fall has just begun.

Only his touch can save her from the shift that could destroy it all.

Her fall has just begun. Only his touch can save her from the shift that could destroy it all.
Within my blood runs a thing our kind calls the Shadowing Disease. It shadows over, and bends everything to its will. When the first blood- shift came, it tore through flesh and blood, threatening to bend me, break bone, shatter my mind and entrap my heart with its honeyed, seductive poison. It came with vicious intent, moving my thoughts and altering me forever. The shift has caused a rift within me. No one was safe when it entrapped me in its claws of foul lust. But I have the only antidote against the evil that becomes me – his touch alone has the power to release the spurs of sweet darkness that clung on for dear life. I knew what I had to do; the desperation pulled my mind with the deep determination of a hungry predator. By the time the revelation raised me from the dark dungeon of my bounds – it might have been too late

cover designed by Regina Wamba


“I wanted to go to her, but not yet. What did you say to someone who had just lost a loved one? A mother. I had not earned the right to empathize with such loss. I did not have the words, nor the true emotions, as I had never had such a thing as a mother, I had never experienced anything the way she had. It was clear to me what I was in that moment – a product of the Council.” 

~ x ~ 

“I was on a lit path, a raging firestorm for him – all of him. My body ached for it. I had found the antidote to my disease, and in those forced images of false memories, I found my salvation, a cure from myself, to what I would eventually become.” 

Carlyle Labuschagne's books on Goodreads

The Broken Destiny The Broken Destiny (Broken, #1)
reviews: 41
ratings: 107 (avg rating 4.15)

Evanescent Evanescent (Broken, #2)
ratings: 6 (avg rating 4.50)

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Top 5 Things I Look for in a Book Cover

Photo by Kelsey Kukal-Keeton

I recently had the pleasure of working with Kelsey Kukal-Keeton of K. Keeton Designs and Regina Wamba of MaeIDesign on the cover for my upcoming New Adult contemporary romance, Meant for Her (releasing 10/17/13). The above image is one of the "outtakes" from the shoot, which I thought would be fun to share with you. In the process of considering the design for the cover, I viewed at least a hundred different books on Amazon. It was an eye-opening experience!

As I went along, I realized certain types of covers consistently caught my attention, for both good and bad reasons. I thought mentioning my observations here might help other authors as they make their cover design decisions. Of course, this is simply a matter of my opinion...I'd love to hear yours!

These are the Top 5 things that caught my eye:
  1. Less is more. The covers that had clean, simple designs looked more professional than those with too much going on.
  2. Font choice is key. I was consistently surprised by how difficult it was to read the titles and/or author names on some of the book covers on Amazon. Some fonts were so ornate that the letters were practically unrecognizable. Others were done in colors that blended too much with the background. Authors need to remember that people are looking at a very small image of the book cover when browsing on Amazon, so it needs to be legible at that size.
  3. Covers should reflect the subject matter. There were covers I saw when I searched for "New Adult Romance" that didn't convey the genre at all. I saw pictures of houses, instruments, open fields, and even a running horse. Be sure the cover tells the reader what they're about to dig into.
  4. Great taglines can capture a reader. I've read a number of surveys that indicate readers often ignore the "Bestselling Author" labels on the covers of books when making their purchasing decisions. But more often than not, a good one-sentence tagline captures their interest. One of my recent faves was on Bethany Lopez's New Adult contemporary romance, Indelible, which is about a college baseball player who falls for a single mom. The tagline reads, "She's about to throw him the biggest curve ball of his life." Love it!
  5. Dare to be different...but not too different! Especially in the emerging New Adult genre, covers have a tendency to all look the same. Many of them feature a couple on the verge of kissing, or a half-naked guy with a girl clinging to him in some way. While it's good that these books immediately cry, "New Adult romance," they risk being one of a hundred others that gets overlooked. Consider pops of bold color or a custom photo shoot (which is more affordable than ever these days!) to help your cover stand out.
As I said, these are just my thoughts. What do you think makes a great book cover? I'd love to know!