Oct 292010

I wish my dogs were this well trained. If they had opposable thumbs, they’d be making a video of me and my husband doing tricks that they’ve taught us. My cat would be directing.

My Dead People book won’t be up in time for Halloween. A friend is copy editing it now. In the meantime, I’ve typed up an old ghost story that was published in the 90s and will put it up for free on Smashwords and Amazon. Even though it’s free, I still need a decent cover. As soon as I have it, I’ll put it up.

This weekend I’ll be typing up all my old short stories. Not an exciting Halloween weekend. What are your plans?

Oct 212010

First, thanks again to book review Blodeuedd for letting me interview her. Congratulations to Lucy, who won an e-copy of Cattitude or my upcoming book, Dead People. And speaking of Dead People. . .

I have a cover! I love it! A huge thank you to the fabulous Laura Morrigan, cover artist extraordinaire. It’s nothing like what was in my mind. Instead, it’s 1000 times better. It suits my book and I think it catches the eye.

I was hoping to get Dead People online before Halloween, but it doesn’t look like that’s going to happen. I’m revising again. Nothing drastic. I’m cutting a lot to make the pacing faster. And since I’m the queen of tweaking, I can’t stop myself from rewriting as I go. After that I’m handing it to a friend, a former teacher, to read it for copy edits. Depending on how fast we are, it should be up in 2-3 weeks.

Book blogger Cecile is interviewing me at All I Want and More tomorrow (Friday). As Lori Brighton says, “Cecile is super sweet and super smutty!” :mrgreen: I’m giving away two books. Stop by if you get a chance.

On Saturday, I’m going to my son’s for dinner and in the Halloween spirit, I’m bringing a side dish called Blue Brains. I’ve never made it before, but it’s supposed to look scary. If it tastes good, I’ll post the recipe here.

Any favorite foods you have that look yucky?

Oct 182010

I haven’t met a book reviewer I didn’t like, and Blodeuedd is one of my favorites. I’m happy that she agreed to let me interview her. Of course reviewers are important to get the word out, but what’s great about them is their love of books, and their excitement for a good one. Just like writers! B calls herself “a young Finnish woman lost in a world of books.” She’s open for reviewing books. You can find out more information on her website. In honor of her interview, I’ll give one commenter a copy of Cattitude, which was reviewed on her site, or an e-copy of my next book, Dead People, as soon as it’s online (about two weeks).

Now, here’s Blodeuedd!

What made you decide to start your own review site?

I have to go back a bit to tell that story. I was bored, there was this course I was attending and I spent more or less 6 hours online since there was nothing else to do. I stumbled upon Angela James’s blog, she was having this Xmas bash, and for some reason that lead me to my first real bookblog. And I thought, hey I could do that. I mean I love books, and I would love to talk about them. So after a rocky start I settled in, and started writing more and more reviews, and finally, I could talk about what I love. And thanks to my lovely blogging buddies I am still here, because honestly I would have grown bored talking about books with no one.

Has your reading experience changed since you started to post reviews? Are you more analytical as you read? Do you take conscious note of what works and what doesn’t?

Analytical, no way, that is one thing I will never do. I am not one for dissecting a book and seeing things that might not even be there. But yes my reviews have become better and I have found my own style. But I read as I always have, for pure escapism. I never take notes or anything like that, when I read I do not want to think about a review, I just want to enjoy the book. Afterwards I start to think, but sure yes of course I stop and marvel at great writing, or bad writing and wonder what went wrong.

I see that you read “fantasy, chick-lit, paranormal romance, urban fantasy, YA, historical/+romance and literary fiction.” Do you have a favorite? Or are you like me and need a variety?

Fantasy is my one true love, sadly though it is the genre I get to read the least. But I do need variety; I do not think I could survive on fantasy alone. I need romance, historical and modern. I needs shapehifters kicking ass, I need my funny chick-lit that makes me smile, and I need fiction. Because there I find the kind of writing that just makes me want to write as beautifully as they do.

What grabs you in a book? The premise? An exciting hook? Strong characters? A compelling, fresh voice that keeps you reading? Anything else?

It can be anything. Sometimes I fall head of heels in love with the writing, other times it’s the cute storyline, or just a story that I enjoy without really knowing why. It might be the humor, the thrill of the book that makes me read faster and faster, it might just be anything. I can never tell because books always find new ways to surprise me.

What authors are your favorites? Can you say what makes their books stand out for you?

This is a hard one, I do not want to say I have fav authors, because I might love one book, and then hate the next. But I will give it a try and mention Raymond E.Feist who has written the best book ever! Magician (go read it now), it is my fav re-read, and I love it to pieces. Then there is Robert Jordan who sadly passed away a few years ago, and that broke my heart. I love his writing and world building.

Both those authors are fantasy writers, and when you look at my keeper shelf there is mostly fantasy there. I love the books because of the drama, the epic storylines, and the great worlds that have been created. I can see myself there, and they are the kind of authors I just love. So yes I have a weakness for fantasy authors.

If you’ve liked an author’s books and then you get one that’s not good, how many more chances do you give the author?

Of course I go back, time after time… after time. Because I have hope and with authors I enjoy I seldom give up. But ok perhaps after the 10th bad book I might give up, and try something else.

Do you ever think of writing a book? If so, what kind of a book would you write?

Hihi, of course, I am actually writing one. I started when I was 16, and it’s a fantasy series, there are a few books already written now, and I have started on the last one. But I just do not have the time any more so I have been working on the last few for years. What I really should do is go back to book 1 and try to do something about it. I mostly wrote for myself, I loved fantasy and had read every single book that could be found around here (even the bad fantasy ones), so I started a book. Will it ever be published, who knows, I guess it would be in Sweden and read by like 10 people. But my dream is to be up there with the big ones, Jordan, Hobb, and Feist. A girl can dream.

Thanks for inviting me Edie, this was so much fun. I have never been interviewed by an author before, I feel so famous 🙂

Oct 172010

I’m doing something new. On Monday (Oct. 18), I’m interviewing a book reviewer, the lovely Book Girl of Mur-y-Castell, aka as Blodeuedd. She’s from Finland, and I love her site. With the internet, it really is a small world. In honor of her coming here, I’m giving away an e-copy of Cattitude, which was reviewed on Blodeuedd’s site.

The same day, my first monthly column on indie publishing (and sometimes just publishing) will be on How to Write Shop, which was created by Lori Devoti and Kathy Steffen.

On Friday, I’m being interviewed at All I Want and More, with the most interesting questions I’ve been asked. I’ll be giving away two e-copies of Cattitude.

Last week was fun for me, too. On Saturday, I gave a talk on self-publishing to my local chapter, and Liz Kreger talked about her experience with Samhain Publishing. We got a lot of questions. Writers are interested in all the opportunities available, from print to indie publishing. If your books are good, you can do it all.

What’s your opinion on doing it all?

Oct 102010

Belle is being interviewed by Meankitty and her Typing Slave (aka Jody Wallace) on Monday, October 11. There will be a giveaway. I hope you’ll stop by and say hi.

My cat vs. zombies blog is still up at Amanda Hocking’s Zombiepalooza, with 2 giveaways. Amanda is keeping all the giveaways open through Oct. 28th. Stop by and answer the burning question: Who do you think would come out on top? Dogs, cats or zombies?

Oct 072010

Quote from a review of Cattitude at Candy’s Raves (and Rants):

What a silly, stupid, and pointless book. …

And I actually stayed up late reading that drivel because I could not put it down.”

So far, I’ve gotten either fabulous or pretty good reviews (you can see quotes from a few of them on the home page).  I’ve wondered what I would do when I got a bad one, because sooner of later that’s bound to happen.  Our tastes in books are  subjective.  There are best-sellers I can’t stand, so I thought I was ready for it.  

I still haven’t gotten a bad one, but Candy calling Cattitude silly, stupid, pointless and drivel cracked me up. It helped that she said a lot of good things, too. I appreciate that she kept an open mind and was objective, even though it’s not her usual choice of book.

Lis at Blodeuedd’s Book Girl of Mur-y-Castell was another reluctant reader. She had it forced upon her by Blodeuedd. (Smooches to B!) She said:

When B asked me to review this book and read the blurb I was already mentally shaking my head and saying: ‘Nooooooooooooooooo way!’”

But then:

Cattitude is a surprising book that I can definitely recommend. It’s a refreshing read with an original, funny and suspenseful plot, complete with a host of witty and funny characters. It is a well written story that has you on the edge of your seat and rolling on the floor in front of it and maybe pinking a way a stray tear as well.”

I’m happy for both reviews. Inside my 99% surety that people should love or at least like my book, there’s the niggle that maybe…just maybe…I’m wrong. 😯 So when reluctant readers say good things, it makes me feel that I did write a pretty damn good book. (That niggle is still there, but now I have some ammunition against it.)

Of course, I still love reviews that get me from the get go.

On Monday, I’m interviewing Zoe Winters. She’s been my main mentor during the last couple months. By “main mentor,” I mean the person I pester with a couple hundred questions. Now that I’m published, the questions have gotten harder. I thought other self-published writers might be interested in her knowledge.

I’m around the internet! This morning I’m at The Otherworld Diner, giving 13 reasons why you should consider self-publishing. I should also be at Sarah’s Book Reviews Author’s Animal Antics today. It’s not up as I write this (10:00am CST). Sarah’s in the UK, so I don’t know when her day starts. You’ll need to scroll down for the link. And tomorrow I’ll be at a cool place, Amanda Hockings’ Zombiepaloosa. I’m talking about how my cat can beat up zombies. (Hey, zombies are much slower than mice. And we know size doesn’t really matter.) There are giveaways at Sarah’s and Amanda’s sites.

I’ll be at other places soon. I’m posting the dates and events on my Giveaways/Events page.

So where have you been lately?