As spring chases away the winter blues, the Roses are finding inspiration in the words of others. For April:

Happiness is like a butterfly which, when pursued, is always beyond our grasp, but, if you will sit down quietly, may alight upon you. ~ Nathaniel Hawthorne

Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail. ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Always remember that you are absolutely unique. Just like everyone else. ~ Margaret Mead

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Plotting and Politics? Oh no, by Barbara Edwards

Plotting and Politics? Oh no, by Barbara Edwards

Lexington-Concord April 19th Memorial
The first of the presidential hopefuls was on TV and I ran screaming from the room. No! No! No! It’s too soon!
I have a problem. I remember when the presidential race ran from July when the conventions were held, until November, when we voted. Now the race never stops.
I paced and ranted, then my sense of humor took over.
What if I were plotting this story? Would I start the action over eighteen months before the climax? 
I’ve heard candidates talk about running for president for four long years. 
Where  is the suspense? Does it take that long to reveal character? After months, who cares? Maybe that's the point. to bore us into not voting. I liked the four short months of intense campaigning. I learned everything I needed to know in that short time.
In the best written books character, experience, and what they had to offer is revealed by the author in an interesting, timely manner.
As an author what kind of president would I run? What is important to me?
Do I care if someone got a traffic ticket when they were in their twenties? Maybe, if they have an ongoing record of misconduct.
How about tax fraud? That doesn’t seem to be a big offense anymore, but I won’t vote for that one either.
How about immoral behavior? I won’t vote for a person who is so selfish they can hurt their spouse and children.
So where do I learn about the candidates if they don’t run for years in an attempt to blind me with smoke and mirrors? The plot thickens.
I’m fairly smart, like my friends, and I can do research. Lots of research to find truth, justice and the American way.
I can’t count on the news media to tell me the truth. And I have to pick through blogs to find facts not opinion.
I know that many politicians run since they legally can keep a big portion of their ‘War Chest” for their own use after they lose. I can’t trust someone who needs multi-millions of dollars to persuade me what to think.
I know politicians lie. No matter what you call an untruth, it is a lie.
How’s my plot going? Too much distraction from the interaction between the hero/heroine running for president and the goal of being president. 
Since I want a president who is honest, upholds the Constitution, is the Commander in Chief, represents all Americans, and is morally upright, I will be writing my own ending in the voting booth.

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Monday, April 20, 2015

Spring Cleaning and A Giveaway! Win a Signed Paperback from Laura Breck

Laura Breck
Instead of catching up on my writing as I should be, I've been spring cleaning. Impulsively. It started with the car, getting everything clean and shiny for summer, then it grew to encompass the closets, cabinets, drawers, and even those dark, creepy places underneath footed cabinets - ewww!

Not Laura Breck's husband.
The worst was my husband's personal foundation-wear drawer. He doesn't like to throw away socks or underwear, so the old ones migrate to the back of the drawer and keep the darn thing from closing right. The local Goodwill is going to be shocked when they open a whole garbage bag full of boxer briefs! 

Although I have nearly half the house in amazingly tidy order, I do need to get back to what I do all day. Strange, isn't it, when the job I love gets so overwhelming that cleaning is like a vacation? Oh well, that's just a sign that I should get out and walk more, take advantage of the beautiful Minnesota spring we're enjoying.

And to get me out of the house and into town to mail a package, I'm giving away a signed paperback copy of Dancing in a Hurricane. All you need to do to win is to tell me which place in your house or garage is most in need of a good spring cleaning!

Win This Book in Paperback!

Have a wonderful day!
~Smart Women ~Sexy Men ~Seductive Romance
~Dancing in a Hurricane is available in digital formats at Amazon, Smashwords, and Barnes & Noble and in paperback at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Createspace
~Love in the Land of Lakes is available in digital format at Smashwords, All Romance Ebooks, Barnes & Noble, and Amazon, and in paperback at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Createspace

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Some Hot Hero Teasers

On the heels of Jannine's fantastic post about not pushing your books down people's throats, I am sharing my latest venture. :) I am part of a boxed set of 10 full novels of romantic suspense and/or paranormal that is currently on pre-order for 99¢. Mainly, I'm talking about the set because I wanted to share these awesome hero teasers that one of the authors, Dana Delamar, created for each of us. 

One thing this experience has reinforced is how fabulous authors are! I have been so, so blessed to make a ton of wonderful friends in the writing world. I knew some of the authors going into this boxed set, but I've made a handful of new connections, and these ladies are great. They are funny, supportive, and talented. We each bring in our own ideas and skills (I'm more in the 'idea' camp than the 'skills' camp, unfortunately :)), and it's been truly beneficial...and a blast!

Click here to find on Amazon: Passion & Danger

(A portion of the proceeds to benefit research for breast cancer and thymic cancer, a rare form of cancer which one of our authors in the set, Alexa Grace, has.)

Now, feast your eyes...

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Book Sales are like a Jannine Gallant

Happiness is like a butterfly which, when pursued, is always beyond our grasp, but, if you will sit down quietly, may alight upon you. ~ Nathaniel Hawthorne

Apparently book sales are also like that illusive butterfly. We all strive to market our books and attract some attention in the hope of achieving a few sales. I have a feeling most of us aren't happy with the results we're getting. Maybe because we're going about it all wrong.

I read a post the other day on this topic. It was called "Please shut up: Why self-promotion as an author doesn't work." You can click on the title to go to the blog, but basically what the author is saying is we can blog, post and tweet our little brains out on social media, but no one is listening. No one on social media wants to be sold something. Her theory is the only good social media does is to connect with people. We should talk about topics that interest us and create friendships--not try to pimp our books. In doing so, maybe those people will think, "Gee, she seems like a nice person. Maybe I should go buy her book!" We shouldn't push ourselves on people. We should lure them in instead. She used a fishing analogy, but I'm picturing myself leaving a trail of breadcrumbs through the woods... Okay, I guess that makes me the evil witch in the gingerbread house! LOL

Her other point is that we should quit worrying about marketing and just write good books. To succeed, we need a superior product plus the key ingredient...luck. I've given this some thought, and I fear this woman is spot on. Blogging, posting and tweeting about my books really hasn't worked very well when it comes to sales. But I've made a lot of great author friends in the process. Too bad most of us don't have a lot of time to read because we're too busy marketing and squeezing in writing time around the edges. I do enjoy posting the occasional photo of my kids on Facebook. They usually get way more comments and likes than book posts attract. So, should we all simply stop trying to promote on social media and just write great books? Then there's that other all important ingredient... You might want to ask yourself, in the immortal words of Dirty Harry, "Do you feel lucky?"

And now, if you've followed my trail of breadcrumbs and think I'm a nice person...go buy my latest book! LOL It's available on Amazon or Barnes & Noble. Or, leave a comment to tell us what you think about marketing books on social media. Should we all just shut up?