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

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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.

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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.

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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?"

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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

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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.

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