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Category: Marketing for Romance Writers

Marketing for Romance Writers

What’s New in M/M? Authors Share Their Books

Share Your Book Details.

Welcome to the monthly share feature. On or about the 24th of each month, I’ll be asking fellow authors to share their blurbs and buy links in the comments section of my blog.

This month, the focus is on M/M. If you have a book of the male-male persuasion (in any genre), feel free to share it here.

We’d like to see:
Author:
Book title:
Publisher:
Genre:
Blurb:
Buy Links:

Readers are welcome to leave questions or comments. We’d love to hear from everyone.

Kayelle Allen is an award-winning, multi-published author. Her heroes and heroines include badass immortals, warriors who purr, and agents who find the unfindable–or hide it forever. She is known for unstoppable heroes, uncompromising love, and unforgettable passion.

Mind Maps or Why I am Not a Pantser

A Mind Map of my Work in Progress.

I’ve discovered (the hard way) that unless I have a solid plot my book ideas fizzle. I am not a pantser. I recently got a program called Freemind that is “mind map” software. You start with a central idea, and keep clicking to create new “bubbles” or trains of thought, writing down a bit to capture the idea and then moving to the next point. I’m not an “outliney” kind of person either, so making one never worked for me. But for some reason, this program helps me capture my racing thoughts fast enough that I can get them down before they’re gone. When I get an idea it springs whole into my head and I can’t put it on paper fast enough.


Click either image in this post to see them in a larger size.

My character Alitus Vivaldi started as a walk on part because I needed someone to deliver a bit of news to the Empress in her big scene. I kept calling him “her assistant” and after about six times, I realized I needed to name him. The moment I had his name I had all of him. His backstory, his life, his goals, everything. He ended up getting his own book and being a major player in my overall series of trilogies that link together. When things like that happen, it’s hard to record it all. This program has been a real blessing to me. Five years ago I might not have been ready for it, but now, I can’t imagine how I’d get through a plot without it. It’s literally saved me hundreds of frustrating hours of work. My current wip is in its sixth rewrite, and I think this will be its last because of the program. It’s Java based, and it’s produced by Sourceforge, which made Audacity.
One leg of the above mind map.

I used Freemind to come up with ideas for a non-fiction book I’m doing on how to write dialogue. Once I saw the possibilities, I started a mind map for my wip and within days, had mapped out the entire thing, solving my dilemma over the ending and plot problems. My editor had sent me some good info which helped, and between the two, it made a big difference. I attached a print of the dialogue thing, showing just one leg of the basic “topic” mind map. When you open the whole thing, it’s so huge you have to move it around the screen to see it all. I’m doing one for each aspect of the book, and then will work on putting down the details. This program exports as jpg, png, flash, html, java, pdf, open office, and more. I can export it as open office, then save it as rtf, and open it in Word as an outline. I’m amazed that I can write this way. I’d never have thought of doing it but came across the idea in a book I was reading and decided to Google mind map software and see what I could find. This one was free so I figured what the heck. I’ll give it a go. I’m quite visual — I’m stimulated by visual images and inspired by pictures, so this turns out to be ideal for me.
Once I start with a solid idea of where I’m going, and a purpose to accomplish, the random ideas seem to flow better. A mind map seems to be just what I need.

Want to try the product? Go here to download it. Let me know what you think! http://freemind.sourceforge.net

Kayelle Allen is an award-winning, multi-published author. Her heroes and heroines include badass immortals, warriors who purr, and agents who find the unfindable–or hide it forever. She is known for unstoppable heroes, uncompromising love, and unforgettable passion.

Fun New Software for Zip #amwriting

Pro Writing Aid

I’ve been enjoying a new piece of software called Pro Writing Aid. It’s my favorite price: Free. You need at least 200 words for the program to work, but since I’m working on a novel, that isn’t a problem for me.

Click the title under the logo to try it out. It opens in a new window. No worries about your material ending up anywhere else. You can clear the page when you leave, but it doesn’t keep any information if you don’t.

Below is its analysis summary of this article. Click the image to see it full sized.

Click to view in larger size.

Once you paste in your material, click Analyze, and watch the magic happen. This program gives you words that are homynyms, shows you alliteration, sentence length variations, diction issues, sticky sentences (cumbersome or full of phrases), and much more. Each section is shown in its own neat window. Click the tab sections on the left to open the page and see the text.

I keep my document open and make changes to it while referring to the website. When I’m satisfied, I copy, clear the old data, paste the new, and analyze again. Sometimes I find things that it notes are not really “issues.” For example, it tags the word “said” as a dialog tag, even if I’m not using it that way in context. I might have written, “She said you were wrong.” That’s not a tag, but the software only catches the word said. It also picks up growled, whispered, and other such words. These can be helpful catches. Just be aware that now and then, it may be taking them out of context.

Nothing beats a good critique partner or beta reader. Mine are worth far more than gold. But in a pinch, this little program is a great help.

Kayelle Allen is an award-winning, multi-published author. Her heroes and heroines include badass immortals, warriors who purr, and agents who find the unfindable–or hide it forever. She is known for unstoppable heroes, uncompromising love, and unforgettable passion.

How to Create a Burst Effect in Photoshop

A Burst Effect.
It’s easier than you’d think to create a burst effect in Photoshop. I kept seeing this in images so knew it had to be something easy, but had no idea how simple it was until I discovered some advice on an old site.
Here’s how to create the effect. (A downloadable pdf of these instructions is at the end.)
Create a new document

1. Create a new document in Photoshop. I used CS3 for this version, but this should be compatible with most of the versions from 7 up. The size isn’t terribly important. We’re doing this to learn the steps. I made mine 500×500 pixels, RGB Color mode, 8 bit, with 72 as the resolution, and the background white. See the image to the right.

2. Create a new layer. It will not need color yet.

Gradient Tool

3. Select two colors for the Gradient tool. I used black and red. The tool is found by pressing and holding the paint bucket icon.

4. Choose the foreground to background style (the first to show on the menu).

Use the Gradient tool to fill

5. Drag the icon from the bottom of the page to the top. To get a straight line, you can hold down the shift key as you drag. It will look something like the image here.

6. Select the filter menu, and then the submenu Distort. Choose Wave. Set the following parameters.

a) Set the type to Square
b) Number of generators (5). You may want more.
c) Wavelength (50 and 50)
d) Amplitude (450 and 750) HINT: if Photoshop balks, use the slider bars to help you set these numbers.
e) Undefined areas – choose Repeat edge pixels.

When you click OK, you will get an image that looks like this one:

Distort “Wave”

7. Return to the Filter menu, and again, choose Distort, then choose Polar Coordinates.
Set the coordinates to Rectangular to Polar, and press OK.

That’s all it takes to create this effect.

To download a pdf file of these instructions, click here:

How will you use your burst effect? Feel free to share a link to your artwork.

Kayelle Allen is an award-winning, multi-published author. Her heroes and heroines include badass immortals, warriors who purr, and agents who find the unfindable–or hide it forever. She is known for unstoppable heroes, uncompromising love, and unforgettable passion.

Promo Opportunity for Authors Jun 27

It’s New Book Day!

What is New Book Day?

A promo opp for new books released during the current month.

What is the RLF Group?

RLF stands for Romance Lives Forever. It’s a Yahoo group where authors and readers can meet, talk, and share books. It’s open for promo on Saturdays and Sundays, and on Mondays, publishers and author promo services are allowed to take over and share new books. If you pay for a service or assistant to promote you, tell them about RLF.

Who can take part?

All members of Romance Lives Forever who have a book released during the current month (1st – 31st). It repeats every month, so if your book is coming soon, mark your calendar.

What time does it take place?

Any time of the day from 12:01 AM to 11:59 pm during the 4th Friday of each month. (June 29th then July 27th, etc.)

Is this a one time deal?

Nope! This will happen every month on RLF from now until… well, look for those homeward bound cows, or until there is no longer an interest.

What can I share?

Up to three (3) promos, including excerpts, images, book trailers, and buy links.

What are the limits?

No more than three (3) promos per event. This group is in the adult section. We don’t take kindly to *p*o*r*n or other taboo subjects (you know the list), but heat wise… straight, GLBTQ, all are welcome. We like it H-O-T! This opportunity is open to members only.

How do I join? (It’s free!)

Short URL for Twitter and sharing: http://is.gd/rlf4ever
Permission to share with author groups is happily granted!
RLF is owned by Kayelle Allen.

UPDATE / CORRECTION:

The date is June 29th for the first one, and JULY 27th for the next. My apologies! >_<

Kayelle Allen is an award-winning, multi-published author. Her heroes and heroines include badass immortals, warriors who purr, and agents who find the unfindable–or hide it forever. She is known for unstoppable heroes, uncompromising love, and unforgettable passion.

Autographs for Your eBooks @evanjacobs #amreading

Authorgraph

Many people have autographed books. An author’s signature can increase the monetary value of a book (especially for first editions and certain authors), and it can add a great memory as well. With the advent of ebooks, that went away. After all, what would you do? Get the author to use a permanent marker on your ereader? That dilemma caused devoted reader Evan Jacobs to rethink that entire thing.

Evan was attending a reading and when it came time to sign books, he had a Kindle in his hand and no way to get an autograph — so he decided to make one. Originally, he called it Kindlegraph (Evan worked for Amazon) and it was based on the sales information available publicly through the company. I interviewed him earlier this year on Romance Lives Forever. He has since opened the platform to encompass Nook, Kobo, and all other forms of ereaders.

How’s it work?

Readers create an account by using their email or Twitter, search for their favorite authors, and click a button to request an authorgraph. If they are in the system, it sends the request right away. If they are not, when the author signs on, the request will be waiting for them. Then, they create a special signature / autograph unique to that book or reader, and send it via the Authorgraph system. The reader who requested it receives a notice that a file is available for them to download, they accept the file, and appears on their ereader. Ta da! That’s it.

Can authors sign up?

Sure thing. All you do is go to http://authorgraph.com and click on “Authors – Sign Up” and then follow the prompts. It’s a matter of adding your books. Once you get a request, you can create a “live” signature by drawing your name with your mouse or tablet, or you can pick one of several hand-written fonts. You can also grab a button to put on your website, or make your own. I created the one above. (If you’re not handy and want something personalized, I make them via The Author’s Secret. Just order a custom button.)

Evan Jacobs and an Authorgraph

Is it free?

It is free to create an account (for readers and authors), and it’s free to request or make one. If your ISP charges a delivery fee for your Kindle, there might be a fee for the authorgraph. Check before downloading.

Can I get one from _______?

You can get one from any author who cares to sign up. Just go request it. Your favorite author might already be listed. If they are not, they can easily join.

All this was born from the fact that one reader was disappointed at not being able to get an autograph. That’s amazing. Instead of letting the disappointment get him down, he figured out a way to fix the problem. Now, no one else has to be disappointed either, and with Christmas coming, there’s no excuse not to get yourself that cool new ereader you’ve been wanting. So what are you waiting for? Go grab those authorgraphs!

You can get mine here: http://authorgraph.com/authors/kayelleallen

Kayelle Allen is an award-winning, multi-published author. Her heroes and heroines include badass immortals, warriors who purr, and agents who find the unfindable–or hide it forever. She is known for unstoppable heroes, uncompromising love, and unforgettable passion.
 
 
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