Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Kindle Countdown Begins -- THE DRAGON HOUR 99c Day

 Amazon has offered a new promotional venue for Kindle authors, one that is used quite frequently for the non-book products they offer. As the blog title suggests, it's called Kindle Countdown.

I've signed up THE DRAGON HOUR, currently selling for $2.99, for a countdown. What that means is that for today only you can  buy THE DRAGON HOUR FOR 99c. If you miss today, no worries, tomorrow it will be available for $1.99. But after that,  it returns to its regular price.

It is, as the title suggest, a countdown and a good opportunity for me to give you a deal that wouldn't otherwise be available. THE DRAGON HOUR has been on the timetravel bestseller list off and on for over three months and has a 4.3 review rating.

Click Here to Buy
Here are comments from a couple of Amazon reviewers. For more, click on the cover caption.

 ". . . caught my attention. I was not sure it would get my interest but it did more than that. It was fantastic!!!"

"Many surprises throughout the story kept me engrossed and left me wanting more from this author."

So I hope you find this bargain worthwhile and I'd love to see your name on the reviewers list for THE DRAGON HOUR's Amazon page.

Till later,

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Thursday, November 7, 2013

American Night Writers Association (ANWA) 2014 Conference Open for Registration

The ANWA Conference is one of my favorites and it's put on by a wonderful writing  association. I will be talking about it and updating my announcements now and then and I encourage you to look into this writing conference. Its approach is a wonderful combination of popular and literary fiction writing and there's something there for anyone who wants a conference to help them network and perfect their craft and keep them heading on their way to publication.

Time Out For Writers ANWA's 22nd Conference will be held at the Mesa Hilton from February 20 through February 22. Attendees can participate in a query/pitch workshop, attend two full days of classes with industry professionals, enter our "BOB" contest (Beginning of Book) and win fabulous prizes, and pitch their work to both national and local agents and editors. 
Heidi Taylor Publishing Manager for
Deseret Book & Shadow Mountain  

Heidi Taylor's Class:  Help! I'm stuck in the slush pile and CAN'T GET OUT! Tips on how to get your manuscript noticed.

Overview: Writing is the easy part. Shopping for the publisher is HARD! The purpose of this class is to help writers understand that publishing is a business and that if you approach it that way you'll be able to find a home for your manuscript much easier. This class will give writers tips on how to 'sell' their manuscript in such a way that it won't get lost in the slush pile. 

Heidi Taylor has been with Deseret Book for the past nine years. She graduated from the University of Utah where she had the opportunity to study English and Creative Writing with some of the best creative minds in the business. Heidi works as a publishing manager in the areas of children, teen, and young adult fiction and non-fiction where she works one-on-one with authors to acquire and develop their manuscripts from conception to publication. She has had the pleasure of working with New York Times Bestselling author, Brandon Mull, and his Fablehaven series, and Christmas Jar's author, Jason F. Wright, as well as dozens of very talented writers, artists, and designers. She loves searching for diamonds in the slush pile!
Arizona Educator Licensing

"Time Out for Writers" offers Professional Development hours for Arizona Educator Licensing. Receive up to 17 Professional Developmental hours that can be applied toward the renewal of your Arizona Educator's License!

Thursday, Friday and Saturday
February 20-22, 2014
Hilton Phoenix/East Mesa
1011 West Holmes Avenue
Mesa,  Arizona   85210-4923 
Facebook    Twitter  Pinterest
American Night Writers Association | Margaret Turley, ANWA PR | 1146 N. Mesa Dr. #102-233 | Mesa | AZ | 85201

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Thursday, October 31, 2013

Shadow of the Wolf is #1 - Sorta

Last night, Halloween  eve no less, SHADOW OF THE WOLF was given the nod by Lousy Book Covers. They gave me the full treatment. They hated the girl, they hated the wolf, they hated the moon, they hated the typeface, they hated the testimonial and the blurb and most of all they hated the girl's cleavage.  Pretty much it was an overall hatefest.
What's more they chose to put me in with some very interesting company.
Take a look at some of the covers that also won this "honor."

 Lousy Book Covers - Shadow of the Wolf. 

The one of the left is one of the better example and the link will take you to others, plus the commentary on my cover.

You gotta love these ladies and gentlemen (???) or you'll end up crying and I have no intentions of doing that. Whatever the offense of this cover -- and it does have some issues -- a cover is meant to draw attention to a book, especially in the Amazon bookstore where there are pages and pages of covers. The bright lettering on this cover serves that purpose and the sales increase since I changed up the earlier cover proves to me that this cover is doing its job. What a cover isn't  supposed to do is conform to some random strangers' idea of how it should look. So trash away, Lousy Book Covers, because I'm standing firm.

The hardest thing for me to understand in all this is why people waste their time writing such malicious nonsense about me and other independent authors. Isn't there something constructive they could do with their time?

You might ask the same of me. Why am I spending valuable writing time responding to this attack? I gave it some thought and it occurred to me that for the life of this book that  cover review will pop up in search engine results. I'd like to have my rebuttal pop up with it.

In the meantime, I'm going to bask in being #1 and treat it like another honor.

How about you? Have you or your books been the target of some out-of-the blue attack by a blogger or a book reviewer or even a website critic. If so, I'd love to hear your story. If I get enough of these stories I'd like to write a composite about cyber-attacks and how we all handle them.

In the meantime, Happy Halloween.
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Monday, October 21, 2013

Spotlighting: Debut Author Jennifer Hayward Has Done It Again

Presented by
Connie Flynn
It is my pleasure to again introduce my friend and former student to readers as she launches her second novel right on the heels of her first.  Her story theme is gutsy and compelling and I think you'll discover an amazing writer with stories very much worth reading. Like me, I suspect you'll become a fan. 

Scroll down and leave a comment with an email address (for contact purposes only) and get entered into a drawing for a free copy of Jennifer's book.

JENNIFER HAYWARD has been a fan of romance and adventure since filching her sister’s Harlequin Presents novels to escape her teenaged angst. She penned her first romance at nineteen. When it was rejected, she bristled at her mother’s suggestion that she needed more life experience. She went on to complete a journalism degree and intern as a sports broadcaster before settling into a career in public relations. Years of working alongside powerful, charismatic CEOs and traveling the world provided perfect fodder for the arrogant alpha males she loves to write, and free research on the some of the world’s most glamorous locales.

A suitable amount of life experience under her belt, she sat down and conjured up the sexiest, most delicious Italian wine magnate she could imagine, had him make his biggest mistake and gave him a wife on the run. That story, The Divorce Party, won her Harlequin’s So You Think You Can Write contest and a book contract. The second installement in the De Campo brothers triology, An Exquisite Challenge, will be published with Harlequin Presents in Feb 2014.

An Exquisite Challenge  Available NOW for re-order for 1/21/14 release

Click Here to Pre-Order
“First move’s yours, Lex,” he murmured. “After that, all bets are off.”

Wine magnate Gabe De Campo has fired his PR company three weeks before the most anticipated launch event the industry’s ever seen. Enter Alexandra Anderson—the last woman he should ever work with, but the only woman who can help.

Gabe and Alex have always been a lethal combination, and with so much at stake for them both, failure is not an option. Can they ignore the powerful attraction between them in order to maintain their professionalism…or is it only a matter of time before the cork is popped on their passion?

For the full story behind this cover, click here

Click Here to Buy
The UK Cover


The Divorce Party
"You threw your fifty-thousand-dollar engagement ring off the Brooklyn Bridge?" 

Lilly shows up to her lavish divorce party with one goal in mind—to leave as quickly as possible minus a husband! Except he has other plans…and Riccardo De Campo isn't easy to say "no" to. 

Forced back into Riccardo's glittering, gossip-fueled world, the price of perfection is still too high and Lilly's old insecurities resurface. An unexpected consequence of their reunion raises the stakes even higher, and the media's golden couple must finally confront the truth behind the headlines.

Contact Jennifer
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Monday, October 14, 2013

DEBUT BOOK: Meet New Fantasy Author Tara Maya


 Every month or so another article will hit the stands bemoaning the loss of literary refinement in human civilization. This always amuses me. More people are reading than ever. How can we make this look bad? Oh, yeah, maybe they're reading, but it's all puppy-poop! So there!

So let me get this straight.

Year 1313
 Number of Literate People Reading Ennobling Philosophical and Religious Stuff: 50
Number of Literate People: 50
Number of People communicating primarily through the written word: 1 (primarily a nun walled into some little room with quill and parchment)

Year 2013
Number of Literate People Reading Ennobling Philosophical and Religious Stuff: 50
Number of Literate People Reading Trashy Genre Books Like Harry Potter: 400 million
Number of Literate People: Apparently more than 400 million
Number of People communicating primarily through the written word: millions (primarily geeks walled inside little rooms with a computer)

Yeah, reading has really declined in the past 700 years. Cry me an ocean.

There's been no decline, in real numbers, of those who like to read the erudite and uplifting and obscure. Those of us who are interested in flogging our souls with ink and paper are outnumbered by those who like to watch Punch-and-Judy shows, but that's nothing new.

The main complaint here, it seems to me, is that some dofus went and taught the tasteless masses how to read.

I think the entire nature of our society is changing. Consider even the lamest, stupidest trolls on the internet, the kind who post profoundly stupid comments which defy the laws of both logic and grammar. Twenty years ago, these kind of people would have not dreamed of sitting at a keyboard to read or write something.

A century ago, these people would not even have been literate.

A millennium ago, the majority of the human population vastly superior in intelligence to internet trolls would not even have been literate. Just consider: Even the idiots in our society now have to be better versed in the written language, just to express their stupidity, than the geniuses of ages past.

Now Available for Free at
Major Online eBook Retailers
Don't wait to get your copy

Dindi can't do anything right, maybe because she spends more time dancing with pixies than doing her chores. Her clan hopes to marry her off and settle her down, but she dreams of becoming a Tavaedi, one of the powerful warrior-dancers whose secret magics are revealed only to those who pass a mysterious Test during the Initiation ceremony. The problem? No-one in Dindi's clan has ever passed the Test. Her grandmother died trying. But Dindi has a plan.

Kavio is the most powerful warrior-dancer in Faearth, but when he is exiled from the tribehold for a crime he didn't commit, he decides to shed his old life. If roving cannibals and hexers don't kill him first, this is his chance to escape the shadow of his father's wars and his mother's curse. But when he rescues a young Initiate girl, he finds himself drawn into as deadly a plot as any he left behind. He must decide whether to walk away or fight for her... assuming she would even accept the help of an exile.


Blue-skinned rusalki grappled Dindi under the churning surface of the river. She could feel their claws dig into her arms. Their riverweed-like hair entangled her legs when she tried to kick back to the surface. She only managed to gulp a few breaths of air before they pulled her under again.

She hadn't appreciated how fast and deep the river was. On her second gasp for air, she saw that the current was already dragging her out of sight of the screaming girls on the bank. A whirlpool of froth and fae roiled between two large rocks in the middle of the river. The rusalka and her sisters tugged Dindi toward it. Other water fae joined the rusalki. Long snouted pookas, turtle-like kappas and hairy-armed gwyllions all swam around her, leading her to the whirlpool, where even more fae swirled in the whitewater.

"Join our circle, Dindi!" the fae voices gurgled under the water. "Dance with us forever!"

"No!" She kicked and swam and stole another gasp for air before they snagged her again. There were so many of them now, all pulling her down, all singing to the tune of the rushing river. She tried to shout, "Dispel!" but swallowed water instead. Her head hit a rock, disorienting her. She sank, this time sure she wouldn't be coming up again.

"Dispel!" It was a man's voice.

Strong arms encircled her and lifted her until her arms and head broke the surface. Her rescuer swam with her toward the shore. He overpowered the current, he shrugged aside the hands of the water faeries stroking his hair and arms. When he reached the shallows, he scooped Dindi into his arms and carried her the rest of the way to the grassy bank. He set her down gently.

She coughed out some water while he supported her back.

"Better?" he asked.

She nodded. He was young--only a few years older than she. The aura of confidence and competence he radiated made him seem older. Without knowing quite why, she was certain he was a Tavaedi.

"Good." He had a gorgeous smile. A wisp of his dark bangs dangled over one eye. He brushed his dripping hair back over his head.

Dindi's hand touched skin--he was not wearing any shirt. Both of them were sopping wet. On him, that meant trickles of water coursed over a bedrock of muscle. As for her, the thin white wrap clung transparently to her body like a wet leaf. She blushed.

"It might have been easier to swim if you had let go of that," he teased. He touched her hand, which was closed around something. "What were you holding onto so tightly that it mattered more than drowning?"

Tara’s blog
Tara’s Twitter
The Unfinished Song on Facebook
Barnes and Noble

Initiate is free everywhere except on Barnes and Noble (where it’s $0.99). You can download a free .epub version via Smashwords.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Fragment Friday #2: Shadow on the Moon by Connie Flynn

Click Here to Buy

This week's fragment is from my first paranormal book, SHADOW ON THE MOON, a story about a wolf biologist who intervenes in an Arizona wolf hunt and the tormented man she encounters who desperately needs her to regain his humanity. SHADOW ON THE MOON is on sale for 99c today. Scroll down to the bottom of the blog to visit the other author's websites. They each have fragment for you.

This fragment shows Morgan Wilder being transformed into a werewolf.

His eyes snapped open and he stared in unspeakable horror. Where hands once were, he saw hair and claws—large, powerful claws that could rip a throat apart. A crazed laugh bubbled in his throat, but when he opened his mouth only a groan emerged.

"Your alchemization’s complete, Morgan," Lily said from above him.

"You are one of us now."
She stood in the perimeter of his vision, a silhouette against the dark woods. Behind her, a bat darted for the trees and he could see each rib of its small wings, see its tiny feet drawn close to its body. It was all so clear, he'd swear the sun was shining.

Lily bent to stroke his head. Red glinted off her ebony eyes. Her touch repulsed him. Instinctively, he turned his head, snapped at her hand. He caught a tuft of fur.

She laughed. "Ah, you are angry. But you will grow accustomed to this new life."

He wanted to speak of his bewilderment, to tell Lily that her murky robe now looked like a coat of silver-white hair, that her teeth had grown long and sharp. But he could utter only a series of whines.

"Your skepticism is refuted." Lily's mouth widened into a beastly smile. "You are mine now, my darling Morgan. For many, many glorious lifetimes."


And elsewhere, by those brave enough to live in the perilous mountains, were heard the echoes of a night beast's agonized howl.

To Connie Flynn Site

Friday, September 27, 2013

Fragment Friday #1 -- The Dragon Struts His Stuff

 This Friday Fragment is from my award-winning, bestselling novel, THE DRAGON HOUR.

The setting is a land called Lochlorraine, a 17th century village ripped out of time by a bold science experiment that bounces them from century to century. When a 21st century band of thugs gets trapped inside, the village's acting ruler, Lady Caryn, recognizes one of them and know the role he's destined to play.  But Luke doesn't see it that way.  This excerpt shows Lady Caryn doing her best to convince Luke that he truly is their legendary dragon slayer.

“Clearly you know naught of dragons, sir.” Her tone annoyed him.

“Only what I've read in fairy tales.”

“Then you must have read of their fiery breath. And if you know that, then you must also know that it sets the roofs afire.”

With the volume of sparks that flew from the chimneys, Luke found it miraculous that the straw roofs didn't routinely burst into flames. 

Click Here to Buy
The horn blew again.  Ormeskirk swooped low over the village. Not a volley had been fired at his approach. His unexpected appearance had apparently caught the castle sentry off guard. Now, with the bird so close to the ground, the soldiers wouldn't shoot for fear of hitting one of their own. As the bird glided low, they rushed forward with pitchforks and axes. A man leaped up on the dip of a wing and caught it with the tine of his weapon.

Ormeskirk faltered, a sight that evoked a prayer of thanks from Caryn's lips. But Luke's heart twisted at the ensuing scream. As the bird struggled to stay aloft, his injured wing struck a cottage. Straw flew into the wind. A rafter collapsed, pulling in a stretch of roof. With another scream, the bird rose and turned, his open beak poised just above the crumbling roof. The cottage instantly burst into flames.

“Jesus!” Luke exclaimed, snapping his head toward Caryn.

She gave him a censuring look. “So, Sir Luke Slade, do ye still affirm that dragons do not exist? Or do birds of your time breathe fire and smoke as this one does?”

Back To Connie Flynn Site

Wednesday, September 25, 2013





Connie Flynn and Bootcamp for Novelists Introduce Bootcamp Classrooms
The Bootcamps called Face-to-Face have been renamed Bootcamp Classroom since it's easier to say and it means the same thing. I'm curious about how you like the new logo. It's a little more girly and yet still has a whiff of testosterone, not to mention the blackboard that reminds us this is a learning experience.

The first renewed Bootcamp was well received by twenty-one authors at various stages of their careers. Watch for the testimonial page that will come up soon on the Bootcamp website ( ). The 12 Essential Questions Classroom is designed for all writers from beginners to those who are seasoned and multi-published.  It's purpose is to help you pull together the story you want to write full enough that you will know WHAT to write when you leave the Classroom and head home to finally put it down on paper.


WHAT: Twelve Essential Questions to Ask to Turn New Ideas Into Stories. An all-day fiction writer's workshop that begins with your idea and guides you through your story to the end using a series of questions that when fully
answered provide the basic structure on which to write your novel.

WHEN: November 2, 2013 TIME: 10:00am - 5:00pm

WHO: Taught by multi-published author and Bootcamp founder, Connie Flynn.

FOR: Anyone who wants to write a novel, from first timers to writers to multi-published authors who are starting their tenth or eleventh or one hundredth book.

WHERE: Vision Quest Bookstore 2225 N Scottsdale Rd, Scottsdale, AZ 85257 Cross streets: Scottsdale Road and Oak (SE side)

WHY: You've always wanted to write a novel and don't know where to start. You have a blockbuster idea that you can't quite pull together. You've written several books that you haven't been able to sell. Connie Flynn can help. Whether you've never written a word or are a multi-published author working on your trillionth novel, this workshop will fill the bill because the material and exercises are tailored to apply to the individual writer's needs. They focus on YOUR story content, YOUR story flow, and as YOU answer each question you'll find the parts that fit the unique circumstances of the novel YOU want to write.

CONTACT:  Connie at


Until October 6    $69 Save $26

After October 6   $79  Save $16

After October 20 or at the Door  $85

 If you are coming from out of town and need hotel recommendations email Connie at for information

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Monday, September 23, 2013

Welcome to Fragment Friday

Blog Hop With Me. It's Fun

H.D. Thomson and Caris Roane, my paranormal writing buddies, launched this quick and fun blog hop to help you warm up before you begin your day of writing about shapeshifters and demons, or ghosts and witches. These short excerpts from a dozen or so published paranormal authors will help you get back in a para-world point of view.

If you are a published paranormal author (traditional or indie) I invite you to sign on for this week and next.  Just scroll down and register on the linky list at the end of this post . Your duties will be:
  • Post an excerpt juicy with paranormal happenings of no more that 250 word and schedule it for midnight Thursday.
  • Display the Fragment Friday badge on your site and let your visitors know you'll be posting yours excerpt that Friday.
  •  Leave some comments on each others blogs, send a few tweets to your followers and update your Facebook status and  other social media.
In return you get traffic to your blog, new follows and likes, and generally raise your visibility to search engines.

Click to Buy
A Scottish paradise lost in time is invaded by 21st century thugs. During a robbery gone wrong, Luke carries his wounded cousin through a window in time, killers hot on their heels. Caryn rules this land and knows Luke has a duty because he's the legendary Dragon Slayer. Her duty is to convince him.
Connie Flynn, bestselling, award-winning published author of ten novels and three short stories in several genres — paranormal romance, romantic comedy, action-adventure and contemporary fantasy/sci-fi,  also teaches day-long workshops through Bootcamp for Novelists, a private writing school that she co-founded in 2009. Look for two new releases from Connie, soon to be showcased on this blog. 

Back To Connie Flynn Site

Spotlighting: Romance Writer Mary Tate Engels

by Connie Flynn

BEST-SELLING AUTHOR of more than 33 books, Mary Tate Engels is a novelist, editor, and teacher with roots in the South and a passion for chasing dreams and finding love! A romantic at heart, she is published in fiction and non-fiction with Navajo traders' history and an authentic Mexican cookbook. Meet her at

Look for Mary every third Tuesday on Much Cheaper Than Therapy, when she becomes a permanent contributor, starting this August 20th.

The rest of us at MCTT welcome Mary with open arms and are eager to see her participation. Here's what she has to say about joining us.
Hi There,

I'm a Boomer on the Web and after many years of writing books, I dream in digital, as in eBooks. I'll be here on Much Cheaper Than Therapy sharing my experiences on Writing Naked and other tales of Chasing Dreams and Finding Love! Hope you'll tune in and leave a comment. I love feedback. I'm on Facebook – wherever my muse takes me: Occasionally Twitter about the value of stories in our lives and free books:

Come visit my home away from home, my website: . And while you're there, sign up for my quarterly newsletter to see what I'm up to, along with a little kick-ass about chasing your dreams and finding happiness.

Chasing Dreams, Finding Love

Monday, September 16, 2013

The Rest of the Story . . . about internet & used car lots & stuff

Why Internet Businesses Remind Me
of Used Car Lots
A couples months ago (7/15) almost to this date I posted a harsh little piece about my very poor experience with Google and the Google ads program. The details of the original post can be read by clicking on the caption of the photo to the left.

After the blog ran, Google refunded the charges against my add account and I suppose Google deserves an apology from me for not setting things straight right away. But I'm doing it now because it's the right thing to do.

In my defense she'd been a bit "ho-hum, maybe we'll give back your money," or so I took it. I'll never know for sure. But what I do know is that I  heard back from them only after I'd blogged about my experience.  In fact, the day after I'd slapped up the outraged post, I received a call from the woman I'd spoken to right after my runaways ad account came to my attention.  And, she, too, did the right thing.  It's all good now. Because, yes, I did get a refund.

Was that blog the reason I got my money back? I think so. At least partly. The truth is I'm not ready to advertise on Google yet and not sure I ever will be. It makes me very uncomfortable because their payment system is too much like handing them a blank check. Actually, it IS giving them a blank check. People who are used to big advertising budgets probably know how to constrain or at least be aware of how much it's costing each day, but I'm still barely fluent in Google Analytics and my small eBook corner of isn't big time.  So I learned my lesson and it ended up not costing me.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Spotlighting Sci-Fi Fantasy Author April Reign

April Reign
presented by Connie Flynn

April M. Reign is the bestselling author of The Mancini Saga, The Dhellia Series, The Disciples of the Damned Series and The Turning Series. She started her writing career long before she could read or write. While bundled around a campfire at the beach in Southern California with her family, she'd share stories about sea monsters and land creatures.

In her teenage years, authors such as Nora Roberts, Stephen King, Dean Koontz, Jude Deveraux, Anne Rice and many others were the influence that shaped her career as an author.

April lives in Southern California with her two teenage sons, her attention-seeking cat and the glorious beach, which is almost close enough to be her backyard.

I asked April to tell us what question has she never been asked that she wishes someone would? And she gave us a great answer.

Monday, August 19, 2013

The Magic of Writing Fiction

The view at the Millennium from the entry to our conference room
I spent most of the weekend at the Millennium Hotel in Scottsdale attending the Desert Sleuths Chapter of Sister in Crime tenth annual Write Now! 2013 Conference. As always, this was an information-packed conference attended by warm and friendly mystery writers.

If you're a writer and not familiar with Desert Sleuths, you really should check them out. They meet in Scottsdale at Grimaldi's Restaurant and offer good food, good company, and tons of information on writing and marketing your novels. You can learn more at their Facebook page.

So what did I take away when the conference was over?

It was something that happened between our keynote speakers, GREGG HURWITZ  and HANK PHILLIPPI RYAN. Although each gave a dynamic program, what really touched me was the interview that Hank, who is a seasoned investigative reporter, did with Gregg, a bestselling novelist, screenplay writer, and comic book author.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Win a Free Copy of THE DRAGON HOUR

I invite you to Book Buzzr's Sci Fi and Fantasy Festival. Click on the badge above and it will take you to the festival where you can become eligible to win a free Kindle copy of my latest time travel novel, THE DRAGON HOUR, plus those from many other authors.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

A Writing Contest That Fights Cancer

I received the email letter below from Margaret Turley who has been so pivotal in making this event a success. I know the deadline is close but if you have a short story or are in the mood to write one (page limit 4000 words), then here's a place to do that and also help out a very deserving charity.  Please support them if you can.

Monday, July 22, 2013

IGW Spotlight: Bestselling Medieval Historical Author Denise Doming

 Spotlighted by Connie Flynn

Denise Domning is the award-winning, best-selling author of eleven historical novels and the co-author with Monica Sarli of one gritty, hard-bitten memoir of addiction and recovery.  Of the two genres she frankly prefers the rats, grime and fleas of the Twelfth Century over the ghettos and drug use of modern Kansas City.  For Denise, writing means using words as her time machine and painting an accurate portrait of a past.  Open any of her novels, whether Twelfth, Thirteenth, Sixteenth or Nineteenth Century, and step into a bygone era.  As one reviewer put it “ live the life and the language, smell the odors of unwashed humanity, and hear the sucking sounds as your flimsy shoes slog through mud and muck.”  Now doesn't that sound romantic?

Denise and her husband Ed live on a farm in Cornville (yes, Cornville), Arizona, where they plant veggies, milk cows and have an Easter egg hunt every day.

So, Denise, what one question has no one asked you about your writing that you wish they would?
Answer: Why have you written eleven books set in England? Why not France or Ancient Crete?

Monday, July 15, 2013

Three Reasons Why Internet Businesses Remind Me of Used Car Lots

Reason #1
This morning I received an email from a internet business I've used many times and it had a product that interested me. Thinking to buy it, I clicked through to check out the price, landed on a product information page, and scrolled down for the information I wanted where I was asked to click further. So, it seemed, there was not only a financial cost for this product, there was a time cost. I clicked out of the site and didn't buy.

Okay, you might say, it was a random occurrence and I was being maybe a tad petty. Possibly, but well, no. This happens with internet businesses more and more often these days. I guess the rationale is that first they want you to really want the product, then they tell you how much it costs. Which makes me think the product isn't all that good to begin with or is extravagantly overpriced.

I wish these were techniques practiced only by small start-up web companies, but they aren't. Similar techniques are used by two of our most influential internet platform providers.

I came smack up against this hard truth when I started looking into paid advertising for my novels. I began with front pages ads on some book blogs and websites. I have a background in advertising art and by proxy some knowledge of advertising principles so I know that random ads here and there are not particularly effective but I thought the influence of the sites would help. It didn't and the ads didn't generate sales. There had to be another way. Maybe Google.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Deadly Fire Kills 18 Hotshot Firefighters on the Hottest Day of the Year

I live in Arizona and, for my taste, my state's been in the news far too often for all the wrong reasons. Yesterday's reason was by far the worst. Nineteen firemen lost their lives fighting a fire on Yarnell Hill. Yarnell is a sleepy little ranching town in the Arizona mountains where people keep cabins so they can escape the summer heat.

A lightening burst, promising rainfall that never came, ignited the fire. It started out small, then suddenly exploded and killed eighteen highly skilled Granite Mountain Hotshots, plus a nineteenth man from a different unit. It's too early to know how these men got trapped and what caused the fire to explode almost instantaneously, so all we're left with now is the grief of losing so many of our bravest all at once. (Click here to read the full story ).

Monday, June 24, 2013

A Spotlight is on Amylynn Bright

by Connie Flynn
It's my pleasure to introduce a terrific new Regency author:
Amylynn Bright
Amylynn Bright

Since I write Regency romances, I’ve pondered this question quite a bit. Anytime anyone mentions reincarnation, people tend to say they were Cleopatra or Genghis Kahn or something. They never say they were the guy from the black plague who pulled the cart through town and hollered for everyone to, “bring out your dead.”

I’ve done extensive research on my genealogy and discovered all kinds of exciting things. Of course, then at you learn that EVERYone is descended from royalty and really, it’s not all that exciting. Don’t believe me? It’s a proven mathematical statistic. Every person on the planet is related to Charlemagne, Nefertiti, and Confuscious. If you think that’s mindboggling, get this little fact. All six billion people on our planet today have a common ancestor who only lived a couple of thousand years ago.

Every. Single. Person.

One researcher I read said that the truly astounding thing would be to prove you were NOT a descendant of Charlemagne.

So even though we were all related to royalty, the fun part of genealogy is figuring out which ones. I got all excited when my family tree took me to Scotland and I got closer and closer to William Wallace, Guardian of Scotland, made so famous by the movie Braveheart. Don’t you know, I am related instead to Edward I, the villain of the movie.

It’s easy to go from a princess to a pauper. Apparently my family has a history of marrying down rather than up. True love kept getting in the way. Still, I hold out hope that someday, someone will show up on my door with a writ proving I’m the long lost Queen of Luxembourg or something

So stop by and ask questions about your possible ancestors. I probably won't know the answers, but I can help you find them. And when you stop, enter my drawing for a free eBook or print copy of MISS GOLDSLEIGH'S SECRET. Be sure to leave your email address which will also get you subscribed to my mailing list. No worries, if you decide the newsletter doesn't fit your needs, unsubscribing is easy. The last thing I want to be is a spammer. 

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Olivia Goldsleigh just wants to live without terror, but a gunshot in the night proves things can always get worse. The beautiful and god-like Lord Dalton swears to protect her, to make the danger go away. She wants the man, the life, the family, the bliss he promises, but her secrets are certain to destroy them all.

When Henry Cavendish, Marquess of Dalton, leapt to catch the fainting woman before she hit the cobblestone, he never thought that one chivalrous act would set his well ordered life on end.  His ingrained need to protect her has every bit as much to do with her enchanting beauty as it does his desire to wipe the hunted look from her startling blue eyes. He thinks he has everything in hand, but the lady has secrets that puts everything he loves at risk.


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Unfortunately, mail is slow during a war. She thought he knew everything. He had never suspected. Thomas has always wanted to be a part of the Belling’s family but he was too foolish to grab the chance when she threw herself at him before. Instead, he ran off to war. 

Emboldened by his new-found appreciation for a grown-up Francesca, he finds that dream is within his reach. If she thinks he’s running away this time, she has no idea what she’s in for.

Twitter: @amylynnbright
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* * *Enter my drawing for a free eBook or print copy of MISS GOLDSLEIGH'S SECRET.  Be sure to leave your email address which will also get you subscribed to my mailing list. No worries, if you decide the newsletter doesn't fit your needs, unsubscribing is easy. The last thing I want to be is a spammer. * * *