Thursday, April 26, 2012

Good Timing

Wow, how often does this happen? It's my day to blog here, and I have a book release scheduled for the same day.
So, here it its...Courting Damnation is available today from Red Rose Publishing.

 Cursed by a vengeful fairy, Harry has been forced to remain in the boundaries of Algonquin Park where every night he becomes a beaver. When he accepts a job guiding Willow Hopkins, a wildlife photographer to a remote area of the park, Harry falls for Willow's adventurous spirit, inciting the wrath of the very fairy who placed his curse.

 Doomed to never be able to be together as humans, Harry and Willow struggle to survive and find a way to escape their fate.

 I'm excited that this story is getting a second chance, as anything that has to do with camping has a special place in my heart. I'm also excited because the cover artist was able to use a photograph I took myself for the background image. The photo is of Booth Rock, at Rock Lake in Algonquin Park. Courting Damnation is set in Algonquin, one of my favourite places in the province. I'm proud to say I hiked the trail that takes you to the top of that cliff. I couldn't walk for the rest of the day, my knees were so not happy with me, but the view was well worth it.

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posted by Jennie Andrus at 2:42 pm 0 comments

Thursday, January 26, 2012


Wrongful Punishment



Blurb

The hardest thing Dwin ever had to do, was turn his beloved into a Genie, but rules were rules and he never broke Djinn law. No matter how much it broke his heart.

Jenelle knew betrayal intimately, and vowed to never forgive Dwin for his short sighted views. Too bad for her Dwin has other ideas.

To Buy
Wrongful Punishment


Excerpt

“Damnit woman! You can’t do things like that.”


Jenelle’s refusal to look at him, annoyed him and tread on his patience. The woman had been nothing but trouble since her punishment three years earlier. Watching how she reverently run her fingers over the marbled bust of the oldest and most powerful of Djinns angered him and set his body on fire with jealousy. The great Djinn didn’t deserve her reverence…he did!


“Says who? You turned me into a genie Dwin, not some leach’s personal sex toy. I grant wishes, not sexual favors and especially not against an innocent woman’s explicit wishes, that would be rape and I’ll have nothing to do with that. He got what he deserved and I’d do it again!” she replied heatedly, anger and disgust barely contained in her voice. Her power fluctuating, despite the fact that she was collared against practicing all magic’s until her Master ordered it.


Dwin wiped his hands over his face and took a deep breath. He needed her to understand, or he’d lose her forever. “Most Genies enjoy pleasing their masters. They thrive on it.” If he couldn’t get her to understand, they’d take her away.
posted by Aline de Chevigny at 6:11 pm 0 comments

New Release

In From the Cold, the third story in the Tiara Islands Inn series, releases today from Red Rose Publishing

This story goes back to the original characters from Jewel of the Highlands, Julie and Noah. Julie is trying to provide a romantic weekend package for her guests for Valentines Day, but as usual, things don't go the way she planned.

I have never gone on any kind of romantic get away for Valentines Day and now, it's my Daughter's birthday so that takes precedence. If I had to pick a place I'd go, I think I'd choose somewhere warm. I'm not a big beach person, but somewhere we could hike, maybe camp and see lots of stars...that would be perfect. It's all about spending time together, right?

What about you? Anyone have any wishes or plans for this years romantic holiday?

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posted by Jennie Andrus at 2:26 pm 0 comments

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

New Sci Fi Erotic Romance from Bianca D'Arc

It's been a while since I checked in here. I'm not really sure what's going on with this blog right now, but I finally noticed it was my turn to blog, so here I am! :) I've been busy, working on new projects and celebrating a couple of new and upcoming releases. Finally! I know it's been a while since there's been new material from me. I'm glad to finally end the long dry spell.
Just lately, I've had a couple of romances in futuristic space-faring settings. First, a new novel that starts a brand new trilogy from Samhain Publishing, called HIDDEN TALENT. It released in ebook on October 25th and will be in print sometime next year. The second book in the series is titled TALENT FOR TROUBLE and the third will be called SHY TALENT. I anticipate those being released next year, but don't have exact dates yet.
HIDDEN TALENT is based on the premise that in the future, humans have developed and utilized certain kinds of psychic Talents. In some parts of the galaxy, gifted people share their strengths on a Council of those with Talent who rule over a group of planets. In other parts, people with Talent are hunted for their power. Jeri, the heroine of this story is on the run from one such place and she crosses paths with a StarLord, Micah, who is on a covert mission for the Council. He recognizes her abilities and takes her with him aboard his starship.
What happens then is an education for the shy woman who grew up very repressed by Council standards. Aboard the good ship Circe, pleasure is shared freely in pairs or multiples as a way to enhance and recharge Talent. Micah teaches her all about her abilities and how to harness them. He never bargained on falling in love with her, but there it is. They race to help an agricultural world under attack and together, they learn that they are more powerful than either one is alone.
KING OF SWORDS will be rereleased shortly in ebook formats. It is the first story in the Arcana series of novellas that ties into my Jit'suku Chronicles. Other books in the series include the Sons of Amber: Ezekiel & Michael. This story had been previously released as part of an anthology called FORTUNE'S FOOL, a couple of years ago from Phaze. That anthology is out of print now, so I'm reissuing this story in preparation for releasing the other stories in the series.
KING OF SWORDS is set in the Jit'suku universe, a few hundred years before the Sons of Amber stories. I anticipate having a number of related books set in this world, creating a generational saga that follows the consequences of human tinkering with soldiers' DNA, making them Enhanced, better than they were before and more dangerous to both races.
This particular story introduces a little bar on a space station called The Rabbit Hole, where information is passed back and forth to a network of spies working for the good of humanity. When aliens attack and try to subdue the station, it's up to a couple of retired soldiers turned spies and a clairvoyant civilian woman to repell the invaders. She teams up with one Enhanced soldier in particular. Together can they retake the station and find a love that will last for all time?
The second Arcana story is called KING OF CUPS and will be out in December. It follows the proprietor of The Rabbit Hole and his clairvoyant card dealer on an adventure into Jit'suku space. Few who have gone there have ever returned. They find themselves on an adventure of epic proportions simply by tryinig to help someone out of a jam. Trapped aboard an alien spaceship, they can no longer deny the attraction that has raged between them for months. Can they overcome their differences and find a solution to an intergalactic problem at the same time?
That takes me to the end of the year, but I have a lot more planned for 2012, so stay tuned! :)

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posted by Bianca D'Arc at 6:00 am 0 comments

Thursday, July 07, 2011

Going Indie – starting an e-publishing company

I’m Tambra Kendall, owner of Daughters of Avalon Publishing. Some of you may be considering self-publishing and for others it is merely curiosity. Technology has now made it possible for a writer to produce a quality product. Back in 1990 when I first dipped my toes into the waters of self-publishing this was not the case.

Self-publishing doesn’t mean slapping a cover together for a manuscript that hasn’t been polished within an inch of its life. As with all areas of business, the crap will sink to the bottom and the good will rise to the top. Hire an editor, a writing friend you trust or a beta reader – someone who reads your story as a reader, but can tell you where things don’t work. Readers don’t forget the name of the author who disappointed them.

Why self-publishing?

I’ve been previously published in small press and three electronic publishers but have had to wait a year for royalties, endure cover art with my name spelled wrong which I had to fight with them to change, and been cheated out of royalties as an author and editor. Tired of the unprofessionalism and unethical mores, I’ve returned as an independent publisher. I went into self-publishing with the idea that I was going to make my company the best I could, and that meant as professional as possible. My mission: to provide quality books in ebook and print formats.

Keeping more of the profit from your work is one of the main reasons to self-publish: you know you’re not going to cheat yourself from the money you earn. Also, if you are with a traditional, small press or an e-publisher you don’t know the information you’re being given is accurate because the publisher is the only one allowed the statistics. By becoming a publisher, you’ll have an accurate count of how many books you’re selling and what genre is popular with readers. In the future if you have plans to submit to a literary agent or publisher, you’ll have good solid data to back you up.

Why e-publishing?

The popularity of e-books continues to soar and not just in the U.S. XinXii is an e-book marketplace based in Germany, offering a wide variety of fiction and non-fiction. Australia is another country that is quickly discovering e-books and self-publishing. The price of e-readers such as the Amazon Kindle is dropping, giving people easier access to electronic books.

Setting up your business

If you’ve decided to come over to the self-publishing side, take the time to work out a business plan, starting with the name of your company. The company name is something I didn’t just pick off the top of my head. It was carefully chosen to highlight what I do. It’s vitally important. A name immediately evokes a feeling and visual to readers and anyone else connected to you. Most of my romances are Celtic mythology inspired; Daughters of Avalon is a name that is female empowering and magical.

To brand your business you need a logo that grabs the attention of people. My company has a professional logo, business cards and stationery created by a graphic artist, Kath Urbahn, who will create my book covers as well.
The website for Daughters of Avalon is easy to navigate and provides all the information a reader needs for purchasing my books – as shown by the positive comments I’ve received about the site. You don’t want to frustrate your potential customers; make things as easy for them as possible.

I purchased a DBA (Doing Business As) and a sales and use tax permit. Belonging to professional organizations such as Romance Writers of America and SPAN-Small Publishers Association of North America are ways that show I am serious about my career and my business. If you are considering self-publishing, it’s a good idea to have a separate business account for the monies you receive. This will make things easier when tax time comes around and to tell at a glance where you are financially.
The importance of book covers

If you can’t create a quality book cover, invest in a graphic artist who knows what they are doing. The cover is the first thing a potential reader sees; a bad cover will hurt your sales, especially in electronic publishing. If you have an unprofessional cover, the first thing people will think is that the work is just as terrible. A good first impression counts. You need a cover that makes a reader want to investigate the story further. Take pride in the product you are selling – if you don’t care, why should the reader?

And remember, the cover must also work well in thumbnail format as this is likely to be the first view potential customers have of your book.
The bottom line

By self-publishing, you must be author, editor, marketing staff and publisher. What do you get in return for all of this work? Higher profits, hopefully. In some cases, 70% of the profit goes to you, the author/publisher. This is a huge boon for a writer! The going percentage rate for an e-published author ranges from 30-45% of the net price of the book. For third party sites, you receive about half of the amount of your percentage; many times, it is less than that.
Self-publishing vs conventional publishing

Now more than ever an author has the tools and the opportunity to take an active role in their career. Self-publishing isn’t for everyone, but for some of us it provides a niche to showcase our dreams exactly how we envision them. Also note, just because you choose to self-publish doesn’t mean you have to shy away from traditional publishing. My goal is to do both. JA Konrath, Amada Hocking and John Locke are three authors who have made it big in self-publishing. John Locke has made it into the million dollar club at Amazon.com for his e-book sales – he explains how he did it in How I Sold One Million Ebooks in Five Months.

Traditional publishing and self-publishing each have their strengths and drawbacks. In today’s world, you have more opportunities than ever to reach readers and boldly forge ahead with a career pathway paved with hard work and planning.

I wish all of you the best in your writing journey.

Tambra Kendall
Daughters of Avalon Publishing
www.daughtersofavalonpublishing.com

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posted by Tambra at 5:39 pm 0 comments

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Daughters of Avalon Publishing

Hi everyone,

I have some exciting news to share. I've started a company, Daughters of Avalon Publishing. The company has an official muse, Sparky Urban, my terror-ier. He has a Facebook page and at our website there is a link to Cafe Press where you can find Sparky Urban merchandise and items for writers.
I'm on Facebook as well, and if you haven't friended me come on over, its under Tambra Kendall. There should be a FB page for Daughters of Avalon Publishing. FB is a bit tricky for me when it comes to doing the business pages. Anyway, lots to learn!

This a wonderful time to be an author and have the technology to really publish our work through places like Amazon, Smashwords and CreateSpace.

When you submit your story to Smashwords, it isn't intantaneous. The formatting must be a certain way it must go through the vetter aka the meatgrinder. This process can take a couple of days with so many people doing this the wait in the queue the reason. To me, it's all worth it.

Self publishing isn't for everyone but for some of us it is something that works. This is my second turn at self publishing. The first time was in 1990 when things were expensive and the options smaller, including using the internet.

As I type this, I have a story going through the Smashwords Vetter. Then, it will be on to Amazon and finally Smashwords for print.

I hope you'll celebrate with me as I take control of my writing career.

The website is: www.daughtersofavalonpublishing,com
email is: daughtersofavalon@att.net

Until next time!
Tambra Kendall
Daughters of Avalon Publishing

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posted by Tambra at 9:36 pm 0 comments

Thursday, February 24, 2011

The Winter Blues

Okay, so we're coming up to the part of the year that is most depressing. The snow doesn't look pretty anymore, definitely not a winter wonderland, and spring is still far enough away that you aren't quite prepared to trade in the winter coat for a lighter one. Everything looks grungy, there's little bits of trash that have been hidden by snow showing up, and it's not even really possible to do things like hiking because everything is icy.

Blech!

I wish I could tell you I had a fabulous way to overcome the lack of good spirits this time of year inspires. I don't. I just want to curl up in bed and read trashy fan fiction with a cup of minty hot chocolate. Maybe it's not so surprising that the stories I've been working on the last few weeks have been rather dark. Child prostitution, murder, revenge -- I've found myself delving into some really depressing topics.

So, maybe the best way to deal with the pre-spring blahs, is to embrace them. Use the time to write those scenes that are dreary and morbid, the kinds of things it's hard to write when the sun is shining and the world looks so damn cheery you half expect flowers to sprout up out of nowhere.

I've struggled all winter to finish a story I started while camping last summer. It took me until today to realize I was struggling so hard with it because my mind wasn't happy writing beach scenes when my fingers were numb with cold and I was bundled under extra blankets. (curse you furnace!!!! Why couldn't you have lasted just a few more weeks?) So, until the weather perks up again, I'll be writing a story set in the cold of space, where the hero is a victim, a prostitute, and soon, a conspirator to mass murder....kinda makes him seem unlikable, but that's the point of the story. Just like this dreary time of year, life in this future, especially in space, isn't sunshine and roses.

Hopefully, in a few weeks, the spring flowers will start poking through the ground, and I can move on to something less depressing. I'm sure everyone else is looking forward to spring as well.

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posted by Jennie Andrus at 1:48 pm 0 comments

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Location, Location, Location!

Honestly, I got nothing interesting to say. Why? Because I don't do anything interesting with my days, I don't go anywhere more exciting than to Tim Hortons (hmmmmm Timmy's)

I've come to the conclusion that whoever said writers lead isolated lives, was full of horse crap. I admit, it's not the most social occupation, but any writer who lives like a hermit must be either brilliant or insane. The imagination is like any other part of your body, it needs fuel to make it run. Staring out the window at your neighbors old broken down car...not so inspiring.

I used to think my dream was to live in an isolated cabin in the woods with my faithful dog Kenobi, and write novels all day....That was my big plan all through high school. I got the dog, (though he's no so much faithful as...brainless) but I quickly realized I was afraid of bears, the dark and being alone...so my plan had a few flaws. Looking back, I don't think I would have had much luck even if I didn't have all these phobias.

Getting inspiration for an idea can come from almost anywhere, driving past an oddly worded sign, watching your kids at karate class, going for a hike or canoe ride, a trip to the mall or driving past a house and thinking, Oh my f-ing God! That house would be amazing for a character who... But you have to get out and see, do and hear things. Hiding in the house, being a hermit isn't going to do you much good, and sadly, neither will going to your day job. Sure you can write a few stories about an ad executive or a receptionist but eventually, your work place and home town is going to feel as boring in your writing as it feels to you after living there for a while.

You want your readers to experience new things through your writing...but in a lot of cases, that's going to come through so much clearer if you've experienced it or seen it yourself. Try writing about camping without ever having gone...it's not easy. Hell, packing for a camping trip isn't easy if you don't have experience. (you always forget something, usually a lighter and a can opener)

And now I'm rambling LOL. I'd love to be able to go to exotic locations and write awesome stories set there, but sadly, money is always an issue, so I doubt I'll be writing anything set in the Australian Outback or Fiji anytime soon. (so depressed about this, BTW) but there can be some great stories inspired by a trip to the zoo (ever noticed the zoo workers have great legs, sort of like UPS drivers?) or a visit to a pumpkin patch (usually they have hay mazes and stuff too that can inspire creepy halloween stories)

I don't know if I had a point. Too much tea (and a cafe mocha from Timmy's) has made my brain jittery. I guess, the point is, to be open minded about what's close at hand. A story set in Bermuda would be nice, especially right now since it's so freaking cold out, but you can make a fabulous plot out of a less exotic location. That being said, I am not going with my husband to the dump to unload old shingles. I'm pretty sure my imagination wouldn't find much of interest there...

Anyone got any stories to share of how a simple trip inspired a plot idea or character?
posted by Jennie Andrus at 2:36 pm 1 comments

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Getting Serious for September

For any of us with kids, summer probably wasn't very productive, writing wise. Hopefully those trips to the beach, Disney Land, Wonderland, the Grand Canyon or Gramma's provided some sort of inspiration for a new story. Even if you don't have kids, chances are you let your word count goals slip more than a few times because the weather was great and you couldn't stand the thought of being inside all day. With only a week until school starts up (for my kids...some of yours might be in school all ready) it's time to do some planning to get yourself back in gear for writing again. Here are a few ideas to help get the creative juices flowing.

1. Clean your writing space. Nothing makes it harder to write than trying to see the monitor over piles of paper, or not being able to move the mouse because of the stack of notebooks piled beside it. A tidy space reduces stress, which is a good thing when you're trying to write. I won't get into the Feng Shui advice.

2. Review your notes. After a long break, it's hard to remember the little points that had you so excited about a certain story. You remember the fight scene that took you days of agonizing to write, or the secondary character that keeps wanting more than his share of page time. It's easy to say screw it and move onto a brand new project. Reviewing your notes will remind you of all the brilliant ideas you had and hopefully, will inspire you not to toss it away.

3. Make a plan. Pick a daily word count goal, or a date to finish the first draft on. If your plan to write a 25K story, and your goal is 5K a day, it feels really cool to say "I could have this done in 5 days!" Give yourself a bit of a buffer though...chances are you won't manage 5K a day one day, or the story will go beyond 25K. Nothing is certain in writing, so don't set yourself up for disappointment.

4. Stay connected. You don't have to be on facebook all day or chatting with your writing friends, but the odd little break to discuss how you're doing, or a problem that just popped up.

5. If you have a dedicated following of readers, let them know what you are doing. Nothing sparks a fire under your butt better than fans begging you to finish so they can read your latest work. If you don't have dedicated fans yet, you can do the same thing with a good writing group who will offer encouragement. Even someone saying "YAY!" or "Good job!" helps you keep going.

6. Plan to participate in NANOWRIMO or another group mass writing event. Make notes on the story you want to write ahead of time, and get excited about participating. Count down the days, mark it in red on your calendar, write it in big letters on your white board. Whether it's a huge world wide event like NANO or a something similar organized on Twitter or within your group of writing friends, take advantage of it. It's always nice to have people to share the successes and failures with.

If any of you have ideas for getting back into the groove after a writing break, let me know. I can certainly use all the help I can get...though with that being said, I'm heading out for a day of canoeing today, not writing. Technically it's research for a book I have in mind. *cough*




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posted by Jennie Andrus at 1:49 pm 0 comments

Friday, July 16, 2010

New release from Elena Croft


Three of Hearts was released yesterday from Red Rose Publishing. It was previously available from Forbidden which has closed. So if you missed it here's your chance to read all about werebeavers looking for love. After several false starts and lots of personal chaos I'm thrilled to say, I'm hard at work on the next book in the series featuring Leslie's sister Mara. For now here's Leslie's story

It's a paranormal romance. Here's the blurb:
Once the Elders sent her off to Canada to find her mate, Leslie Maple soon realizes life wasn't so hot out in Phoenix. With nothing but a photo, she heads to Vancouver where she meets the two most gorgeous men she'd ever seen, identical twins Sebastian and Castor Belvedere. More intriguing are the feelings they invoke in her, the call she just can't seem to resist.
Aunt Sharon has a nasty habit of playing matchmaker, but Sebastian and Castor are through playing along. However, Aunt Sharon is an old pro at the matchmaking game and plays her wild card asking them to do her a favor by accompanying her to the airport to pick up her latest mate choice. Unfortunately, for them this time Aunt Sharon may be right. But whom does this mate belong too?
Note: contains menage

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posted by Elena Croft at 11:58 pm 0 comments

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

New Ebook from Bianca D'Arc!

WARRIOR’S HEART released yesterday in ebook formats from Samhain Publishing. WARRIOR’S HEART is a new version of an old story by the same name that was published in 2006 by a very small publisher that has since gone out of business. So if you weren’t able to get the old version, here’s your chance! This new version has been spiffed up quite a bit and I’m still very proud of this tale, which was always planned to be the first in a series, but with the publisher problems, it got stalled. I’m glad to say the train is back on the rails now and hopefully more of these stories will be coming soon. Now a little bit about the story...

It’s a paranormal featuring a military hero. Here’s the blurb:

He’s home to claim the girl he never forgot... but more than war memories have changed him.

Gifts of the Ancients, Book 1

Hal’s best-friend status with Casey’s brother always meant that the one woman he wants is strictly off limits. But now that he’s back from a harrowing mission in the ancient Iraqi city of Babylon, all bets are off. The strangely mystical experience left him and his Special Forces team with a new appreciation for life — and strange new abilities they are only beginning to understand.

Casey never thought she’d have a shot with the strong, silent Green Beret. Something about him has changed, though, and old feelings have risen up, demanding an answer. And her answer is an unequivocal yes. Now, to break the news to her brother and hope it doesn’t come to blows.

Her brother’s reaction becomes the least of her worries when Hal singlehandedly stops a car from running her down, then falls into her arms, weak from some kind of strange reaction. Whatever went down in Iraq has changed Hal and made him a target of foreign agents who’ve found his one vulnerability... Casey.

Warning: This title contains dirty talk, sweaty carpentry sex and a sexy Special Forces super hero.

Get your copy today at MyBookstoreAndMore.com

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posted by Bianca D'Arc at 2:40 pm 0 comments