Author enters, stage left and peeks into website. A cloud of dust rises and she sneezes. The sound echoes.
Kerry: Hello? Anybody still here?
Kerry: I know I’ve been absent and silent and neglectful of this blog, and I offer heartfelt apologies. Here’s the thing:
Over the last three months, not only have I been working to get the word out about the release of BETWEEN, I’ve also been working on the second book, WAKEWORLD. As if this was not enough to keep a woman busy, I also have a full time job AND I’ve been putting in practicum hours to get back the RN licence that I let go night upon 20 years ago. There was a new dog, a near disaster with said dog and the cat, and then another new dog. Kids. Cars. Stuff.
So, as you can see, I’ve been busy.
So busy, in fact, that I not only had no time to blog, I also had no words left over at the end of a day. Nothing to say to anybody, in fact. Even my poor family got basic communications but nothing more than necessary. I avoided the phone even more than usual. And if I ever had a minute to contemplate a blog post, the part of my brain where the words come from was as blank as the computer screen.
Hopefully this situation has now been corrected. I’m happy (ecstatic, in fact) to report that I have completed all requirements of the RN Refresher Course. Which means I’m back to my usual somewhat controlled insanity of work and home life and writing. Hopefully this means I’ll get to hang out here a little more.
Right now, I must betake myself to work. I wish you all a happy Friday. Read something good, hug someone you love, do something good for you.
I have been absent here at the blog, I know. This is because I have been present in a lot of other places. Too many other places, in fact! And now I have reached the point where anything beyond sitting on the couch and drinking coffee feels like a ridiculously unreasonable expectation.
What? I need to go to work? Clean house, write books, do nursing practicum stuff, take care of the sick animals?
No thank you. Me. Coffee. Couch. We’re good.
Unfortunately it doesn’t work that way, especially on a Monday. And so, today, I’m over at the Debutante Ball, blogging about too many decisions. And coffee.
I will also be getting my butt up off the couch shortly and taking it to work, even though that is a decision intensive process all by itself.
Now you have a decisions to make: click the link, or not? This is a pretty easy one. All you have to do is move your finger onto this link: http://www.thedebutanteball.com/?p=27811. Click. And there you are.
DIVIDED, by Jennifer Sights
During a routine case, private investigator Elena Ronen meets and falls in love with Vittorio Santini, member of a secret coven, and a kiss awakens her dormant magical powers. Because Elena wields an extremely powerful form of magic, she struggles to convince her enemies she has no desire to take over the coven. When loyalties are questioned, and Elena can no longer tell friend from foe, she must prove she wants nothing more than to live her life quietly. When this wish falls on deaf ears, Elena and Vittorio must work together to defeat their enemies as they try to save their love, their lives, and the lives of those they care about.
I find that I am short on words.
My Twitter friend J.C. suggested that I get around this by writing a letter to my pre-published self. This wouldn’t be a bad idea, except that this self of which we speak is glassy eyed and nearly non-responsive, caught up in a state of shock. You see, we never dreamed, my former self and I, that launch week would be so marvelous and eventful. We dreamed of maybe being published someday, of seeing a book on the shelf somewhere with our name on it. That was the extent of things.
At the beginning of this week I braced myself. I’ve been told that a book launch is often quiet and anti-climactic, and I didn’t want to be disappointed.
There was no need to worry, as it turned out. I was carried along on an amazing ride full of exciting surprises and moments of wonder.
First and foremost, I want to express my gratitude to all of the people who helped in so many ways. I find myself wanting to list specific people, but I know I will forget somebody important and I’m not going to go there. Let me just say this – for the emotional support, the little gifts, the great reviews (and even the honest but not so wonderful ones), for hosting blog posts and giving interviews, for your retweets and Facebook postings, and for sending me pictures of the book in the wild – I thank you from the deepest recesses of a very grateful heart.
One of the most exciting moments for me was seeing this picture of BETWEEN at a Barnes & Noble on Launch Day:
Books so often don’t get this wonderful exposure. I was fully prepared for BETWEEN to be shelved on the stacks. In fact, I’d cased out the Barnes and Noble in Spokane to see where it would be, and was worried when I realized that shelved alphabetically it would be on a bottom shelf, right hand side. Nobody would ever just stumble across it, I thought. In my worst nightmare daydreams I imagined it languishing there, unloved and unseen.
So seeing my book on display in the New In Paperback rack was a huge rush. Especially when I started looking at the company it is keeping. Unbelievable.
Forgive me for showing you one more pic of the book in the wild. Think of me as a new mother with the endless baby pictures. We are so in love we just can’t quite restrain ourselves. So here is my Book Baby at a lovely Indie store in Spokane, Auntie’s Books:
Another amazing thing happened. My awesome Public Relations guy, (yes, it gives me great pleasure to be able to spout that phrase) Brad Brownson, arranged for me to guest blog over at USA Today Happy Ever After. It’s not everyday that a debut author gets an opportunity like that, and I was (and still am) very excited about the whole thing. I admit that there may also have been some brief episodes of panic, and I’m eternally grateful to Julie Butcher and Leigh Evans for getting me through that. (I love you guys)
One of my favorite things about the week was Susan Spann’s running series with my little buddy, Random Penguin. My favorite post involved Random Penguin’s very own book signing event.
The fun was ongoing over at the Debutante Ball, as well. For those who may not know, this is a group blog made up of writers with debut novels coming out in 2013. All of these women are phenomenal human beings with fantastic books, and I count myself as exceptionally lucky to be the Monday Deb. In case you are getting hungry and thirsty reading through this long post on the events of the week, I refer you to Deb Kelly’s post on what to eat while reading BETWEEN, and includes recipes for Salmon Chowder and Dragon Smoothies!
There was so much more, including my Launch Day event at Bitten by Books. I would have loved to be here sharing all of the blog stops every day, but I discovered that there just wasn’t enough time to Do All The Things. Unfortunately, nobody seemed to have a time turner for sale and the blog was a casualty. All of the official blog stops are listed here, though, and you can still go back and read if you so wish.
But don’t go away quite yet!! There are all sorts of wonderful and exciting things still happening that I want to share with you!!
The winner of the blog contest was David Connors – who will be receiving a copy of BETWEEN, a dragon-in-a-bottle, and a little bag of dream stones.
If you happen to be on Twitter, don’t miss the Twitter Chat with me, Book Country, and my beloved agent, Deidre Knight. That’s coming up on February 5, at 9 pm EST. (That’s 6 PM PST, and if you live elsewhere, you’ll have to do the math)
Throughout the month of February, there is an ongoing contest and giveaway for a $50 gift card at Coffee Time Romance.
As for today, I’m getting ready for a celebratory Launch Party with friends and family, here in my own small town.
Thanks for stopping by! If you read Between I would love to hear from you. Actually, I’d still love to hear from you if you don’t. I try to respond to all comments.
Welcome to Monday.
If you’ve made it this far you’re doing well – at least you’ve got your eyes open and are probably out of bed. Congratulations on accomplishing the difficult!
You might notice if you’ve been following along that I skipped a day in Counting Up to the launch day. These things happen in my world. I’d like to tell you that the whole day was sucked into a time/space continuum, but in reality I was tired and just chose to skip a day. See? This is why writing fantasy is so much more interesting than the mundane reality of real life. You may notice that I’ve also switched around to counting down instead of counting up. This is because launch is getting so close - only fifteen days to go! Obviously, I’m excited about this.
I’ve been busy getting ready for a fabulous blog tour, thanks to the incredible and amazing (and I hear also sparkly) Jennifer Morris. She has a wonderful book blog called Books Make Me Happy Reviews, and she is one of the good people. Seriously. This woman volunteered to help with my blog tour because she loves books. How often does that sort of thing happen in this world? You can see the entire line up HERE if you’d like, and I’ll be posting updates as we go along.
Also – the Goodreads giveaway is still going on and will be until January 29th. Twenty-five chances to win a copy of Between!
And now I must do something about the Mondayness of today and get myself off to work. Happy writing or reading, whichever is your pleasure of the day.
THE NEXT BIG THING BLOG HOP
Welcome to the NEXT BIG THING Blog Hop.
This is a wonderful way for readers to discover authors new to them. I hope you’ll find new-to-you authors whose works you enjoy. On this stop on the blog hop, you’ll find a bit of information on me and one of my books and links to five other authors you can explore!
My gratitude to fellow author Piper Bayard for inviting me to participate in this event. You can click the following links to learn more about Piper and her book.
Website: Bayard & Holmes
Buy her books: This spring at Amazon and Barnes & Noble.
In this blog hop, I and my fellow authors, in their respective blogs, have answered ten questions about our book or work-in–progress (giving you a sneak peek). We’ve also included some behind-the-scenes information about how and why we write what we write–the characters, inspirations, plotting and other choices we make. I hope you enjoy it.
Please feel free to comment and share your thoughts and questions. Here is my Next Big Thing!
1: What is the working title of your book?
2: Where did the idea come from for the book?
I got to thinking about the nature of alternate realities, and started asking myself questions. How would a character deal with a world where realities were shifting and changing? What if everything you thought was real turned out not to be? My mind at the time happened to also be full of the artwork of MC Escher, the lives of people living with Schizophrenia, and a certain little penguin. There was a sort of brain explosion and Between was the result.
3: What genre does your book come under?
4: Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
This is a conundrum. I’d be so excited to have my book turned into a movie, but I keep watching movies and looking at actors and actresses and I can’t picture any of them as my characters.
5: What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
When dangerous creatures from dream spill into the waking world, Vivian must risk the Between – a dangerous place where reality and dream intersect – to try to save the ones she loves.
6: Is your book self-published, published by an independent publisher, or represented by an agency?
Between will be published by Ace Books, an imprint of Penguin, on January 29th.
7: How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
Thirty days. The first draft was part of the Nanowrimo insanity, which was followed by something like three years of revisions.
8: What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
Maybe Melissa Marr’s Graveminder?
9: Who or what inspired you to write this book?
It was inspired by my good friend and co-worker Jamie, who also introduced me to MC Escher and a certain penguin.
10: What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
Dragons! Smart, dangerous dragons, capable of walking right out of the Between and into your back yard.
Thanks for joining me today for The Next Big Thing! Below you will find authors who will be blogging next Wednesday. Do be sure to bookmark and add them to your calendars for updates on WIPs and New Releases! Happy Writing and Reading!
I wish I had a picture of what is outside my window this morning, but I don’t think it would turn out on my little camera.
A sheet of snow from the roof hangs over half of the view, creating a natural frame. The trees are heavy with snow, most of them obscured by mist. Holiday lights on one small tree provide the only color. At the center of it all, the wild turkeys scratch for corn, prehistoric and strange.
But, as Frost said once upon a time, ”The woods are lovely, dark and deep, but I have promises to keep, and miles to go before I sleep.”
A long day lies ahead of me – fifteen hours of it, in fact. Work at the day job, followed directly by RN Refresher practicum. Gulp. I haven’t done nursey things for nigh on twenty years. This is somewhat frightening. No fear for the patients though, I will be heavily supervised!
No book news today, but check in tomorrow for The Next Big Thing: Between.
This is the day where I begin to wonder how I am going to do everything, seeing as how I live in the ordinary world and don’t have access to Dreamworld or the Between.
In addition to work and writing and book launch activities, this week I start putting in clinical hours for the completion of the RN Refresher course I’ve been working through. The timing is exquisite. Maybe it’s a good thing, because it will give me decreased opportunity to stress and fidget. Still, the logistics of my life have become mind bending.
I have resorted to calendars, lists, charts, and more lists. There are sticky notes everywhere, and I’ve even made the effort to write down all of my passwords in one place.
Yes, I know. I should never do this, because some evil person might break into my home and seize the opportunity to hack my Goodreads, my webmail, my registrations for RWA and RMFW, my Mail Chimp -
Oh dear God. Mail Chimp.
I’d completely forgotten about the newsletter thing! All of the resources and recommendations and tips for the Newbie Writer Launching a Book say to coerce everybody, one and all, into signing up for the newsletter. I’ve been remiss in this. For one, I seldom sign up for newsletters myself and really don’t want to annoy anybody. For another, I still don’t know what I’m going to say in the damned thing that would be of interest or usefulness.
All of that said, if you want to sign up for the newsletter, or THE NEWSLETTER, as it currently stand out in my mind, please feel free to click HERE. You never know, I might think of something brilliant to share, and if you don’t sign up you might miss it. Barring that, I suppose it’s just an easy way to stay up to speed on Book Launch activities, signings, give aways, and all that sort of thing.
Signing off now to go do All Of The Things.
Happy Friday everybody! (Happy belated Friday if you’re lucky enough to live where it’s the weekend already)
Something fun happened yesterday – my little buddy Random Penguin arrived for his visit with Sullivan McPig in Groningen, Netherlands. Sullivan has kindly offered to show him around and will be posting photos on Twitter under the hashtags #RandomPenguin #worldtour. Why world tour? Well, because Random Penguin is planning even more adventures. He’ll be heading to California next, and I’ll keep you updated on his appearances in case you want to follow along.
Other than that, I have not much to report. I’m busy writing blog posts and answering questions for the Between Blog Tour coming up in a couple of weeks. The Goodreads Giveaway is still ongoing, and will be until January 29, when Between hits the shelves!!! (Sorry, but the very idea of my little book on actual bookstore shelves seems to require bold letters and an entire boatload of exclamation marks. !!!!!! See? I can’t help myself.)
You all could help me out with something, if you will. Sometimes interviewers ask questions like, “Tell us a little bit about yourself.” To which I never quite know what to respond. So I ask you this – what would you like to know about me? Anything? Nothing? Or, alternately, tell me something interesting about YOU that most people would never guess.
Forget the New Year’s resolutions for a minute. Yep, I know. Now that we’ve survived the non-apocalypse, there’s a whole new year rushing toward us at the speed of light.
Let’s ignore that for a minute.
It seems to me that we get so hung up on what we should do differently, what we want to change, what should be better, that we very seldom pause to actually give ourselves credit for what we have accomplished.
So I say, screw the resolutions. Let’s take a few minutes to reflect on what we actually did in 2012. Tell me at least one thing that you are proud of accomplishing. In exchange, I’ll enter you to win a galley of BETWEEN and a fun little dragon-in-a-bottle.
Since it’s my idea, I suppose it’s only fair if I go first.
It was a very big year for me. The two most important things are sort of bookends for each other: signing my first publishing contract, and surviving breast cancer. There was a lot of stuff in between, but it’s sort of hard to top those two!
Now it’s your turn. Tell me one thing (or more) that you feel good about, or proud of, that you did in 2012.
(You have until midnight on January 1st, PST, to post a comment for a chance to win. Also, people who know these things tell me you should be 18. But if you’re under 18, you could have a parental unit accept the book on your behalf. International readers are welcome.)