Friday, June 28, 2013

Phew, how did it get to be Friday?

Ok, where did this week go?

Granted, I did a good amount of writing, it's true. And we had stuff happening almost every night as school wound down and summer programs started up. But I checked the blog today and could hardly believe that the week was over.

Workwise, other than writing, I had a few blog appearances. I was at The Pink Heart Society today with tips for hitting writing conferences this summer - I wish I could make RWA in July but when I'm not writing I'm hanging with the family.  Next year!

And I was at My Sanctuary yesterday with a quick and fun interview.

Now it's 10:30 on a Friday night, I'm ready to call it quits for today but I'll leave you with a little pic of something that just went up on Amazon today! It's the print edition of First Responders, Volume 1 which contains the first 2 novellas, OFF THE CLOCK and IN THE LINE OF DUTY.  Have a great weekend! We'll be celebrating Canada Day here on Monday with Beer-in-the-Butt Chicken, Sweet Potato Fries and Apple Pie. Oh, and Fireworks. :)

Friday, June 21, 2013

Happy Ever Afters

It's Friday. I usually like to clean the house on Friday afternoons so it's ready for the weekend; didn't happen. I wanted to write 10k this week; I managed 8. I bought pizza for supper and somehow my kitchen is STILL a mess. I do, however, have fabulous eyebrows. Tinting and waxing FTW.

Anyway, to bring me back to the title of my blog....

Last weekend the girls and I were going to watch a movie. They were scrolling through the On Demand listings and I don't even remember what the movie was that they mentioned but I vetoed it without blinking an eye. When they asked why, I said that it didn't have a happy ending.

I like happy endings. I like to know that after 2 hours of viewing I'm going to be rewarded with happiness. I like the final taste left in my mouth to be good, not sour or sad. It can be the best movie in the world, but if the ending isn't happy, I feel like I've wasted my time.

Prime example: Partition. I won't spoil the ending, especially if you haven't seen it or want to. But the ending is NOT happy. It's a beautiful story and beautifully shot, but it does not have the Hollywood ending.

I want the Hollywood, Dammit.

I'm the same way with books. Another case in point: I read a book by an author and LOVED it. Really really loved it. But I read her next book and at the end SHE KILLED OFF THE HERO.

The book was so good to that point. They had so earned the happy ending. *my head asplode*

I don't know if we're going to be movie watching this weekend (the weather's pretty nice), but if we do, I guarantee we'll be watching the closing credits with big smiles.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Street Team

One of the things I'm doing this summer is forming a street team. There's been a lot of talk about street teams lately, both good and bad. I can see both sides of the coin, and so I thought long and hard about whether or not I wanted to do it and what form that the team would take.

I'm in the process now of picking 10 readers to form my team. I sent out a special newsletter asking for volunteers and the response was overwhelming! It did confirm that I have really awesome readers. Wow!

Most of all I want it to be fun. And for me, I want the team to operate much like I try to approach my own promotion. Not so much of "Buy my book!" shouting from the rooftops, but establishing connections and relationships - one reader at a time. Members are encouraged to retweet or share some of my social media posts, or post reviews, but in a very non-pressure way (no carpet bombing of the internet). They're also my boots on the ground, so to speak. They can request their local stores, reading groups or library add my book to their lists. They can recommend my books to a friend or colleague. They can leave copies of my books at their doctor's office, on the seat of the bus, or give one to a friend.

In return they'll get exclusive sneak peeks, free books, some swag...and hopefully make some connections of their own. I know I'm looking forward to knowing them better!

Stay frosty,

Donna


Monday, June 17, 2013

Out of Hibernation!

It was a loooong winter. Very long. TOO LONG. But I *think* we might finally be getting some late spring/summery weather around here, and I'm bringing the blog out of hibernation. I'll try to post a couple times a week about what's going on. And a bit of daily dross that might be amusing - I mean I *DO* have teenagers and pets so there's bound to be something.

Like the new banner? I've spring cleaned around here and changed the d├ęcor to match my website. The lovely Kim Killion at Hot Damn Designs did my banner and I did the rest. :)

So what's happened in the last six months? Well, I've had my first book for Harlequin American put through and it'll be out in February, and I've got my proposal on my editor's desk for a continuity series I'm taking part in, again for American which will be out next June. It is going to be a great series and the other authors taking part are lots of fun.

ANNNND I sold my single title series to St. Martins which is GREAT news. HUGE. Fabuloso. I can't wait for this to hit the shelves - which is should, next spring. I worked with my editor on revisions and even though they were intense I can't remember a time when I was more excited to make changes to a book. It was so low stress and awesome. Fingers crossed the changes are what she had in mind! When I sold it, the title was The House on Hideaway Hill. We're making a slight adjustment to that, and I'm just waiting for the final "yes, that's what we're going with" before announcing a new title. Meanwhile, I'm working on Treasure on Lilac Lane, which is book 2 in the series. Fun!

The Rebel Rancher is a finalist in the Booksellers' Best Award - I'm not going to conference this year but my good friend Barb Wallace is going to the reception for me just in case. :)

And in non-writing news, my evil "I have to work while everyone is off this summer" plan involves a tractor for my husband and youth volunteer programs for my kids. I usually try to take time off in the summer because everyone is home but this year it just couldn't happen. Sometimes when opportunity knocks you have to do what you have to do, and I have deadlines. But know when my last deadline is? Next July 1. And then, ladies and germs, I'm GOING ON VACATION. 18 months of straight work deserves a break.

I still plan to enjoy the summer though - everyone needs pool breaks and gardening time and maybe a weekend or two camping. Not to mention the odd supper on the pub patio, know what I mean? We've even put out a small garden this year with tomatoes and peppers and cucumbers and are looking to expand it next year. That's in addition to the strawberries, raspberries, blueberries and rhubarb we have (and don't forget the apple trees!). Last night I made rhubarb crisp from our rhubarb and grilled chicken with herbs from my herb garden.

For right now, I'm heading upstairs to look at swapping dressers for my girls as we just got my eldest a new bed. I call it her "big girl bed" which drives her crazy since she's 15. She's getting a double bed rather than the twin one she's had since she was 2. Especially since her younger sister got her double bed last year! It'll be a bit crazy moving everything around, but in the end it'll be great.

Have a good one!