Monthly Archives: January 2014
A bit of fun, shared from the Escape Publishing blog 🙂
Welcome to ebookHARMONY, where we match readers with compatible authors.
In the lead-up to the Australian Romance Reader (ARRA) awards, we’re featuring one of the nominated authors in a special online datingvoting profile. You can review this profile for free and see if you’re a match, and if so, you may choose to vote for this author in the ARRA awards (voting closes 5th March!).
Today’s featured profile is from author: JULIET MADISON
JULIET MADISON <insert best available photo that sets high expectations and probably looks nothing like you do in everyday life>:
About: Single, female, thirty-something, newly-published author seeks votes for Favourite New Romance Author in the Australian Romance Reader Awards.
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Here’s a quote pic from February or Forever to tide you over (pardon the pun) until release day! And below, a brief excerpt as well…
Chrissie followed his lead and lay back too, hypnotised by the sparkling dots in the sky.
‘I think for tonight I’m going to believe that those stars really are guardian angels and not just lumps of gas,’ Drew said.
‘Me too. I like your hypothesis much more.’ Chrissie imagined each star as a caring soul whose purpose was to guide and protect her. ‘Isn’t it funny how you can actually get a star named after you?’
‘Ha! I’ve got one.’
She turned to face him. ‘Really? There’s a Drew Williams up there?’ Her grin grew along with his.
‘Sure is. It was given to me as a gift. Hey, I should get one for you!’
‘Oh,’ she giggled, ‘I don’t need one. No need to go to all the trouble.’
‘But then you could join me and my mates up there.’
‘Yeah.’ He released his hands from behind his head and pointed to the sky. ‘See, that one there is Bob, that’s Dazza, and that’s Pete.’
A laugh bubbled out from Chrissie, and as Drew lowered his arm by his side it brushed against hers, sending tingles of bliss along her skin. His arm flinched ever so slightly, as though he’d felt it too, and for a moment they didn’t speak, just gazed at the stars and breathed in the salty air as the waves whooshed onto the nearby shore.
There’d be no need for a jacket or cardi tonight; heat ran along her arm from Drew’s skin to hers, spreading throughout her body and heightening her senses. Drew’s hand moved a little, and breath caught in Chrissie’s throat as his pinky finger hooked onto hers. She would have continued focusing on the stars and enjoying the sensation of his skin against hers, had it not been for the unmistakeable feeling that he had turned his head and was now looking right at her.
Slowly, Chrissie’s gaze left the stars above and turned to the one lying next to her.
Yoga teacher and single mother, Chrissie Burns has a plan: move into the rundown beach house left to her by her deceased aunt, renovate it, sell it, and move on. The scene of a terrible accident years ago, the house needs to get out of Chrissie’s hands as soon as possible.
But Tarrin’s Bay, where the house stands, has more to offer than bad memories. The town is lovely, the people friendly, and even Chrissie’s young son finds friends and begins coming out of his shell. Employed at Serendipity Retreat as a yoga instructor, Chrissie is shocked to be given the role of private teacher to Drew Williams, Australia’s top singer/songwriter for the month.
Relationships between instructors and clients are strictly forbidden, but Drew draws happiness out of Chrissie with his down-to-earth nature and sense of humour. Days of stretching and bending may bring Chrissie unexpected peace and strength, but she knows that this interlude must end, and there’s no pose or position to aid her when Drew walks away and leaves her broken-hearted.
> Also available: The January Wish.
In February I’ll have five books out in total and thought it was about time I made a book trailer for at least one of them! So I chose to create one for my upcoming release, February or Forever (1st Feb 2014 from Escape Publishing).
Do you have a favourite book trailer? Share the link in the comments. Or perhaps you’re an author and have one yourself? Share the link too! 🙂
I always like to take a look back at the past year and see how far I’ve come, and plan for the year ahead to give myself something to aim for. Though I think it’s important to be flexible and allow for plans to change as life unfolds, it’s good to have a basic guide to propel you forward.
So first of all, let’s look back on 2013, a huge year for me as it was my first year as a published author…
There were many firsts: seeing my first cover (I can’t tell you how exciting and surreal that was!), taking part in my first book club as author guest, seeing my book advertised on websites and in catalogues, getting reviews for my book, getting my First Sale ribbon at the RWA conference (and dancing like a lunatic at the awards dinner). Overall it was a great year, though there were some challenges and sadness too: my amazing Nanna passed away at age 94, and we lost our old home that my son grew up in, in the Blue Mountains bushfires (my parents had only just sold the place and moved out). Life is a rollercoaster, as they say.
Here are my writing and publishing achievements for last year:
Overall I wrote 3 complete manuscripts, did 1 intensive revision, wrote 2 partials, and 4 outlines.
Here is the breakdown:
- Wrote I Dream of Johnny – 15k words
- Wrote The Delta Girls book #1: SIGHT – 52k words
- Wrote February or Forever (Tarrin’s Bay book #2) – 84k words
- Wrote partial (3 chapters & synopsis) of secret NA/YA project set in Salem
- Wrote partial (3 chapters & synopsis) of You Know You Want To
- Revised existing outline for The Bucket List Club
- Wrote brief outline for Christmas novella
- Wrote brief outline for Lovestruck in London
- Wrote brief outline for a New Adult dance-themed novella
- Revised The Life Makeover Club intensively (twice).
- The January Wish was contracted (didn’t release till recently, 1st Jan 2014)
- Debut novel Fast Forward was released in Feb.
- I Dream of Johnny was contracted and released in Sept.
- Starstruck in Seattle was contracted and released in Oct.
- February or Forever was contracted.
- Signing with a literary agent after querying The Life Makeover Club to 70 agents.
2013 BLOG HIGHLIGHTS:
- Views: 13,000 views in 2013 (over 5000 more than last year!)
- Top 3 posts for 2013:
1. How To Choose A Pen Name (same top post as last year)
- Top / interesting / funny search terms:
1. Most popular search term that brought people to my blog: ‘How to come up with a pen name”
2. Other popular search terms were: romantic comedies 2013, contemporary women’s fiction, pen name generator, setting the scene in a story.
3. The interesting, funny, and bizarre: Cooking novels, Johnny Castle, tango, covered in spit (I actually did have a blog post with a similar title so I’m not that surprised, but why would someone search for it?), Mexican table decorations, me affair with Trisha, birthday cake too many candles, spiritual experience post 9/11, great halls in medieval castles, Help I‘m haunted, Miss chatterbox, raunchy birthday for woman, the neverending sentence, Eat Pray Love dinner party (that’s actually a cool idea!), Juliet is spit on by stranger full length (???), hopjulikit (????),what happened at the end of the fast forward by juliet madison (um, read it & find out!), please don’t disturb.
- Top 3 commentors:
2. Iris B
3. Mary Preston
- Top visitors from:
2. United States
3. United Kingdom
- Top referrers to my blog:
1. Search engines
So yes, it was a big year! What’s in store for 2014? Hopefully more contracts and books out!
Here are my goals for this year:
Overall I aim to write 4 complete manuscripts, of varying lengths:
- Write Haunted Housewives, a romagic comedy novel.
- Write a romagic novella, haven’t decided which one yet out of a choice of three.
- Write Miracle in March, the third book in my Tarrin’s Bay series.
- Write The Delta Girls book #2: SOUND, the next in my YA supernatural series.
- Write a partial of The Bucket List Club (and as much more of it as possible!).
- Read more books! (See my TBR list here). I won’t try to read a certain amount as I want reading to be relaxing and fun, not another deadline. But I will aim to make reading more of a priority and read at other times during the week, not just at bedtime.
What are your goals for the year ahead?
I read an interesting article recently that said goals can simply be things like: write for one hour a day, five days a week, rather than: I’ll complete a book by June. Sometimes people do better when their goal is more of a system to follow than a defined outcome. In my case though, I know I need to have certain books finished by certain times, so personally I need the specific outcome as a goal. Then I break it down to figure out how much time I need to devote to achieving it.
Hope you have a happy and successful 2014 everyone! 🙂
Years ago I would buy a book (or receive one as a gift), read it, then buy another one. Now, I buy (or receive) many in advance. I love having books around me, there is something magical about the beautiful covers, fancy fonts, and promise of secrets within (wow, that was deep, eh?). And because I’m now a writer I’ve become aware of many new authors and books I want to read, so my pile has grown, both physically (on my bookcases) and virtually (on my Kindle).
Today I’m not going to list ALL the books in my pile, just a selection of ones that I’m particularly keen to read soon.
Are any of these on your list too? Or have you read any of these and think there’s one I should read immediately?!
I’m currently reading The Returned by Jason Mott… what will I read next?
- Blood Secret by Jaye Ford
- Banish by Nicola Marsh
- Outback Dreams by Rachael Johns
- The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion.
- Love Anthony by Lisa Genova
- Chasing Perfect by Susan Mallery
- Three Sisters by Susan Mallery
- The Apple Orchard by Susan Wiggs
- Wedding Night by Sophie Kinsella
- Last Night at Chateau Marmont by Lauren Weisberger
- Firefly Lane by Kristin Hannah
- The Secret Ingredient by Dianne Blacklock
- Beautiful Illusion by Jacquie Underdown
- The One That I Want by Allison Winn Scotch
To celebrate the release of THE JANUARY WISH, the first book in my small coastal town series set in Tarrin’s Bay; The Town of New Beginnings, I’m hosting a new interview segment called ‘At Home With…’
Today, we’re paying a visit to romantic suspense author, Lee Christine, whose new release IN SAFE ARMS has just been released too, in follow up to her first release, IN SAFE HANDS.
Hi Juliet. Thanks for having me on your blog today. I live in Newcastle, New South Wales, and have lived here all my life, except for a stint in Sydney years ago.
2. What do you love about the place you call home?
I love the natural beauty of our beaches and Lake Macquarie. I also love our working harbour. Someone once said ‘there’s something honest about a working harbour’. I agree with that.
3. Do you have a favourite local cafe, restaurant, bar, club, business, or store? Give them a plug here!
My favourite store is Scentsation at The Junction. It’s owned by my friend Michelle Rainey, and she has the most exquisite taste in clothes, jewellery, handbags and perfume. If I’m trying to save money I don’t go in for a while because there’s always something to tempt me.
[Juliet ~ Sounds scentsational! I’ll pay a visit if I’m ever in Newcastle 🙂 ]
4. Do you have any pets? If so, what are their names? (Feel free to share a photo)
I don’t have a pet at the moment 😦 . My last dog was a mini Schnauzer called ‘Shaq’. My daughter was into the NBA at the time and named him after Shaq O’Neill. We had him for eleven years and he was such a wonderful dog, I’m afraid if I get another one, I’ll be disappointed. He’s spoiled me for all others I’m afraid.
5. What is your favourite room in the house and why?
I love our family room at the back of the house. It’s where we live, where we’ve had many great days and nights laughing and eating and being together.
6. If you had to evacuate your house, what three items (apart from people and pets!) would you take?
Old photograph albums. Hanging frames with family photographs in them, and the computers, again because of the photographs. You can’t replace those memories.
7. If you had a magic wand, what’s one thing you would change about your home or your town?
I really need to demolish the bathroom and update it, but with my two children studying overseas, buying airline tickets takes priority over a new bathroom at the moment.
8. It’s movie night at your place, the popcorn’s out, and everyone’s nabbed their favourite couch corner or armchair… what movie/s will we watch?
If the boys are with us, we’d be watching something funny like Death at a Funeral or Ted. If it’s just my daughter and myself, then it’s definitely Emma.
9. Imagine you have the luxury of a chef for a night and you’ve invited people over for a dinner party, what would you have the chef cook?
Singapore Chilli Crabs followed by a variety of dessert tasting plates.
[Juliet ~ A bit of everything for dessert, sounds good to me!]
10. Name three books on your To Be Read bookshelf or e-reader:
Watching You by Michael Robotham
The Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman
Man Drought by Rachael Johns
11. Name something unique or uncommon that you have in your pantry or fridge:
Cocoa with Mickey Mouse on the front from Disneyland.
12. If you could live anywhere for one year, where would you go?
Balestrand in Norway. I’ve been there once. A whole host of famous people have stayed there over the years like Eric Clapton and Yoko Ono. It’s so quiet and peaceful right there on the Fiord. I think I could write a great book there. Well…maybe!
[Juliet ~ Sounds perfect for a writer’s escape!]
13. You’ve just received a phone call from a friend or relative, and they’ll be arriving in five minutes for a visit. What do you do?
a) Relax on the couch until they arrive.
b) Put the kettle on; place some (probably homemade) snacks onto a tray; set the table; put flowers into a vase; and light a candle (and maybe even make some place cards with your super calligraphy skills).
c) Put the kettle on; tip out a few cookies onto a plate; check your reflection in the mirror, and wait.
d) Freak out; shove excess household clutter under beds, in cupboards, drawers, and the garage; trip over something in the process; hold an ice pack to your bruised forehead while swearing profusely; check the mirror to see if you’re still in pyjamas; frantically change into suitable clothing whilst simultaneously holding ice pack to your head; fall over again; alternate ice pack between head and location of new injury; then shove ice pack under bed and greet visitors with the fakest smile of pure calm you can muster.
Definitely (d). I’m not a fan of impromptu visits. Well, give me at least twenty minutes notice.
[Juliet ~ I’m a (d) too, Lee!]
> Even though Lee would probably love you to pay a visit, why not visit her online right now?
> And help her pay for that in-house chef (or housekeeper) by buying a copy of her books here:
Threatened with the publication of naked photographs taken in her law student days, defence attorney Allegra Greenwood enlists the help of former SAS Commander Luke Neilson, unaware of his involvement in her brother’s death in Afghanistan.
In a race to stop the photographs appearing on the Internet, Luke battles a hidden enemy, his growing feelings for Allegra, and his conscience, which demands he protect a fallen comrade’s sister. As the stakes increase and more sinister motives unfold, Luke not only has to fight to save her career, he has to fight to save her life.
Legal secretary Josephine Valenti has no idea why a notorious bikie president would be contacting her, but when he is murdered in front of her eyes, she knows that she is in very deep trouble. Fleeing to her home, she’s intercepted by Nate Hunter, a man she used to know and lust after…a man she used to care about. However, Nate has changed. His leathers and his bike tell of a lifestyle that Josie can’t begin to accept or understand. His is a life of drugs, money laundering and prostitution. Though, all is not what it seems, and Josie must fight harder than she ever has before — for the truth, for what’s right, and, ultimately for the man who still has a hold of her heart.