Posted in my books, Thoughts

Reading as a Writer

It takes a lot to get me into a story now. It’s like a magician who knows how the illusion is done, you cannot unsee the process. While I find the behind the scenes work fascinating, there are times when I just want to enjoy the story. I think that’s why I enjoy audiobooks so much. With audiobooks I can just listen and enjoy, I don’t see the mechanics as much as when I’m reading myself.

When I first started writing I had no clue what I was doing, I just wanted to tell a story. I miss those times. Genesis talks about the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, once you know the truth, you cannot unknow it. It’s the same for a writer. As a novice, my inexperience allowed me to be fearless and experiment with things a more knowledgeable author would balk at because “it just isn’t done.” But as I learn the rules and expectations of each genre, I find myself hampered by reader-expectations. Even as a reader, it is difficult to truly enjoy a book without seeing how things come together.

Does knowing how the book comes together ruin the story?

I wonder sometimes when I have friends and fans read ARCs of my books and use their suggestions to improve the books if they too lose something. Does knowing how the book comes together ruin the story for an ARC or Beta reader? Am I ruining the experience by asking them to read the unfinished product?

What do you think? Does knowing how the stories are made ruin the experience or does it give you more insight?

My recent reads.

What are you reading? Besides craft and research books, here are a few of the books I’ve read or listened to recently:

The Hookup Plan by Farrah Rochon

Mischief by Amanda Quick

Killers of a Certain Age by Deanna Raybourn

The Breakup Artist by Erin Clark and Laura Lovely

Deadly Travel by Kate Parker

Sweetwater and the Witch by Jayne Castle

Home for Halloween by KB Davenport

Spy Season by Golden Angel

Flames, Flirts and Festivals anthology by TNRC writers

I like to read diversely and find inspiration from every genre. While my first love is historical romance or suspense, a well-written story no matter the genre can entertain, inspire and fill the well. For me, reading is about refueling, relaxing and self-care because it is my way of unwinding. What are some ways you unwind and relax?

Seventeen-year-old Winona aka Winnie Applegate is a trick rider and archer in Colonel Bill Dexter’s Wild West Extravaganza. Her first act was throwing knives with her younger brother, Riley, who likes to invent things. He especially likes when things that go boom.

When a mysterious benefactor offers to bring their show to England, a series of sabotages turns deadly, and Riley becomes a suspect. To protect her brother, Winnie teams up with a lady Pinkerton agent and Harry McDonald, the young man she believes she is destined to marry.

Secrets and sins come to light as it becomes apparent that it isn’t just the show they are trying to sabotage. The saboteurs are trying to stop the Applegates from reaching England.

The Americans are Coming is An Applegate Mystery, the first in a new Victorian Era Mystery Series.

Winnie is more comfortable throwing knives than knowing which fork to use. She prefers boots and britches to ballgowns and dancing slippers. Will England be prepared for the arrival of the Applegate family?

Posted in my books, promo

Summer Loving

My first Bookfunnel Promo

Whenever you are working with other people, especially people you don’t know, you want to make a good impression. This is my first promo with Bookfunnel and I’m trying to make a good impression. I want to do a good job. Yes, I want to sell books but even more than that I want to be the type of author other authors know will put forth the effort. When I ask to join a group, I want them to say, yes, we want her, she’ll work hard.

As many of you know already I have had to work most of my life. I’m thankful for parents who taught me that hard work pays off (eventually). I have said often that I’m a better worker than I am a leader. Give me a task to do and I’ll do it but just don’t make me assign work for others to do.

One of the most difficult things about being an author today is it has become our job to promote our books. If you are an indie author, like I am, then you are the marketing team. I don’t want to be the sleazy used car salesman shouting buy my car or rather buy my book. Instead, I’d rather bring you into my world. Let you see what the town of Leeward looks like in my head, and maybe, you’ll want to visit, check out the stories and get to know the people.

It all started with Rae Lynne Grimes, a motorcycle riding, tattooed Cinderella who overcame addiction, faced her demons and learned to love herself so that she could love others.

My most recent book, Janie’s Secrets is the one featured in this week’s promo Summer Loving. It’s a second chance romance, family drama, suspense thriller set on the outskirts of Leeward. More than their second chance at romance is threatened when family secrets come to light. Will Janie and Mike survive a blackmailer’s vengeance?