To Pay or not to Pay-Book Reviews.

18 Sep

The internet is full of them. I am sure that you have thought about it.Haven’t you ever wondered how some authors get those countless reviews in one day right after they have published their book? They have purchased reviews.

Well we have thought about this and where we stand is that this is just wrong.

Reviews should be earned! It is really that simple.

We understand that the market is difficult but how do you get the feeling of accomplishment with a paid review? The simple answer is-you don’t!

Reviews tell you something about your writing. Rather it be good or bad one way or the other it helps you as a writer grow. You cannot achieve this growth with a paid review.

Paid reviews do not give you any satisfaction from your peers. There is something to be said about knowing that your peers have purchased and reviewed your book. You do not receive this with a paid review. Your peers tell you what they are looking for from you as a writer. 

Although reviews of any type look good against your book, your conscious knows. Do you really just want sales? Wouldn’t you rather know that people enjoy your writing, your craft? You will not receive this either with a paid book review. 

Reviews are part of being a writer in fact they are necessary but receiving them dishonestly is not morally or ethically right. Part of being a writer is being honest with yourself and your readers. You make yourself vulnerable every time you sit down and write so do not waste your time and all that effort by deceiving your readers. 

Earn your reviews-you will feel extremely satisfied, accomplished. 

Writer BEWARE!!!

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Feature Friday with Author of Fancy Gap, C. David Gelly.

14 Sep

Feature Friday with author of Fancy Gap, C. David Gelly.

What would you like everyone to know about you?

Eternal optimist—lover of life—sets goals & gets them done! Ignores “you can’t do that because!”

What would you like for everyone to know about your book?

First but foremost it’s a work of fiction! First word hit the parchment last October 1, 2011.

How did you come up with the idea for your book?

The legendary fog (cloud deck) that settles in over Fancy Gap on a regular basis is mystical and the notion that a book could be crafted from that planted the seed.

How often do you get out into the woods, to just walk around and enjoy the mountain air. 

Run at noontime just about every day and ride my road bike on the Blue Ridge Parkway on weekends.

How have the folks of Fancy Gap and the surrounding area taken to this book?

Actually much better than I anticipated. The majority, especially the younger set sees it as a very exciting moment. Yet there are a few…but that is simply expected with any novel. I also have a Billboard on Highway 52 halfway between Fancy Gap & Hillsville. So the locals know all about it! 

How often do you write and normally what is the setting like (I write with music in the background or some kind of noise and like and prefer to sit on the back deck with the sun shining)?

When I write it usually is before breakfast. I knock out a 1,000 words at a time. I also write on long flights to Europe or Hawaii.

Which of your characters would you like to solve a mystery with?

Quinn & Louisa are the obvious answers. Yet Levi the Carroll County detective would be a hoot to work with.

Who would be the lead detective?

Levi Blackburn.

This is one of five novels, so how do you know that there will only be five?

Orchard Gap is the next Gap going down the Blue Ridge Parkway. This will be an agro-terrorism mystery/thriller.

Any tips to other authors on writing?

Listen…this isn’t easy. Any author must be committed to the project. Know your audience. Know what will keep them glued to your novel. Keep throwing out bait and reel them into the next chapter. Through in a surprise or two throughout the novel. In Fancy Gap the search was for the little girl. I included a dwarf into the mix. Readers loved it!

I wanted to finish my questions regarding your poem “The Clock of Life”, which of course, is not part of your book, but once I read it I enjoyed it.  Plus these are my questions, so I can deviate.

Do you think that a clock can be wound more than once, if you look at from the standpoint of either new found love or if in the sense of repair?

The clock of love can be wound more than once. The clock of life but once.

"The Clock of Life" 

The Clock of Life is wound but once 
And no man has the power 
To tell just when the hands will stop 
At late or early hour. 
Now is the only time we own 
Love, live, toil with will, 
Do not wait until tomorrow, 
For the Clock may then be still.

 

Much thanks!!! I have included an interview that was recently published.

 

Fog shrouds mountain in mystery

Fancy Gap’s mist inspired an author to set his thriller in the Carroll community.

By Christopher Brooke, Reporter

Friday, August 10, 2012 at 6:00 am (Updated: August 10, 6:00 am)

FANCY GAP  — David Gelly saw possibilities in the famous fog of Fancy Gap — as a shroud of mystery for the setting in his fictional murder thriller.
He’s often driven up U.S. 52 from Winston-Salem, N.C., to his getaway in the mountains, having to slash through fog where he couldn’t see two feet ahead.
Like many drivers who have ended up in the multi-vehicle pileups on Interstate 77 or those who struggled to stay out of accidents in the area, the weather made an impression on Gelly.
To write “Fancy Gap,” Gelly combined his experience as a corporate security supervisor with his love of writing and his interest in the local culture of the Blue Ridge Mountains to pen this tale of a loathsome crime.

“For travelers along the Blue Ridge Parkway at Fancy Gap, the fog often hangs like an azure dream over the rolling green hills,” the book’s blurb says. “But when a madman abducts two children and disappears into the wisps with the young brother and sister, the landscape becomes a nightmare for the children’s parents and local residents.”

“On the bucket list: I said one day I want to write this novel,” he explained.
Staples of Carroll County and Blue Ridge Mountain living appear in the piece, including the Devil’s Den Nature Preserve and the Hillsville Labor Day Gun Show and Flea Market, Buffalo Mountain, the Beaver Dam Trail and vintages from a well-known local winery.
“For travelers along the Blue Ridge Parkway at Fancy Gap, the fog often hangs like an azure dream over the rolling green hills,” the book’s blurb says. “But when a madman abducts two children and disappears into the wisps with the young brother and sister, the landscape becomes a nightmare for the children’s parents and local residents.”
The inspiration came to him in October to write this story. After that, Gelly got up at 4 a.m. each Saturday and sat in his chateau with its panoramic views through the bay windows of the Piedmont. He continues typing until there were 1,000 more words on the page.
“It was a great use of my time instead of going to the bar,” he joked.

READ AN EXCERPT

While the places have their basis in fact, few characters in the book do, Gelly stressed. Any similarity to real people is a coincidence.
Quinn McSpain, the novel’s hero, is a 60-something widower, living like a hermit in his adopted mountain home and still mourning the loss of his spouse.
He meets workaholic FBI agent Louisa Hawke at a retirement party in Arlington, but the couple’s budding romance gets interrupted by a crime that horrifies the mountain community.
Gelly’s previous writing flowed in the non-fiction vein, as the author of many articles for the Twin City Track Club monthly newsletter.
Gelly has directed considerable energy over the years to his running, participating in 50 marathons. His outdoor activities continue, only now he’s hiking, biking and kayaking in the mountains.
Gelly provided security during his time in the U.S. Army, before going on to work for the IRS and then entering the private sector, including working for Sara Lee while it still manufactured clothing in Hillsville and Galax.
That meant he would travel here on occasion to talk about security matters. “I always thought Carroll County was a pretty place.”
No case he investigated in corporate security resembled the plot in the book. However, Gelly did help resolve a prominent scheme where a cotton buyer working to fill Sara Lee’s demand for the textile fiber took kickbacks from suppliers. David H. Mauney III was found guilty of conspiracy, mail fraud and money laundering in federal court in Greensboro.
An estimated $1.2 million was involved and the ringleader went to prison for 6.5 years.
Gelly stands on the verge of retirement himself, at which time he plans to fully immerse himself in the continuing adventures of McSpain and Hawke in the other five planned novels in the “Gap series.”
“Next year, when I retire, I won’t be bound by work,” he explained.

This is the first in a series of six “Gap” novels by David Gelly. Others planned for the series include Orchard Gap, Volunteer Gap, Willis Gap, Squirrel Gap and Low Gap. Fancy Gap is available on Amazon.com and comes in paperback for $14.99 plus shipping or $5.99 for a downloadable version. For more, see Gelly’s blog, www.makedustoreatdust.com.

Friend C. David Gelly

 

 

Review-Sin Incarnate by T.C. Archer

13 Sep

Sin Incarnate by T.C. Archer

Sin Incarnate by T. C. Archer

About the Book – From the Book Description)

Forged in the fires of hell beauty becomes sin incarnate.

 

Something malevolent grows in Lorna’s soul. When she calls forth a lord of the underworld and begs for irresistible beauty, he asks one simple thing in return; she must serve him as one of the underworld females who tests mortal men…then torture them with her beauty when they fail.

 

Good

This story has a good premise to it in my opinion.  It has a good flow to the story and you will find yourself following the storyline and you may try and figure what will happen next.   The author(s) were creative with the story and great character development. 

 

Okay well I have to put this in here.  I liked this story as it had brought in Safe Sex, so it gets high on my list of authors who understand that just because it is a story it should be written the way life should be. 

 

Bad

The following is my opinions and should be taken with a grain of salt.  The bad of this was really nothing other than a couple of typo errors nothing that took away from the story.  I liked the story

 

 

Review Rating 

I use three ratings

Read Now: Pick it up now and read.

Put it in the stack: This represents the stack of books you have that are not a priority.

Put on the bookshelf: Every story should be read.  These sit on your bookshelf and sometimes you have nothing in the stack, so you go to the bookshelf and pull it out.  A bad book is better than good tv.

This book receives a READ NOW, which would be the equivalent to 5 star for those who are wondering.  There were too many of the short stories that I thought were very good and needed to be read than to give it a Put it in the Stack. 

 

Enjoy your day and read as you will have a new story to live in. X

Reviewed by: Xavier Zyta

5 Reasons Why INDIE WRITERS Rock!

11 Sep

Why INDIE WRITERS Rock!

 

1. They have no publishing house-this may seem like a ridiculous idea of why INDIE WRITERS rock but they work even harder because they don’t have a big fat check to sit and write with. They either write to live or they live to write. 

2. Mistakes are made in every industry. With a writer, a writer that is “traditionally” published this is what an editor is for. With an INDIE WRITER you see their mistakes. This makes them human, humble.

3. Approachable. Meanwhile the big names you can’t say hi to on Facebook or get to know what they do day in and day out. An INDIE WRITER will say hello and “Friend” you. They will get to know their readers. They in fact depend on them.

4. An INDIE WRITER inspires us all. If a flunked out English major can write a best seller we all can. 

5. They are constantly improving their craft. With a “traditionally” published author they have editors, publisher and marketers that work with them to continually help them. With an INDIE WRITER you can watch them evolve into a beautiful writer with help from their readers, friends, and others who are in their inner circle. 

 

Support your INDIE WRITER and download a book today at www.hotlitbooks.org!

Feature Friday with Author of The Super Spies and The Cat Lady Killer, Lisa Orchard.

7 Sep

Feature Friday with Author of The Super Spies and The Cat Lady Killer

Lisa Orchard.

.

What would you like everyone to know about you?

I would like everyone to know that I write awesome Young Adult Novels. My goal for my stories is to be entertaining while at the same time teach the young reader some valuable lessons.

 

What would you like for everyone to know about your book

 

I would like everyone to know that it’s a story of three teens that play an innocent game of Truth or Dare. The game turns dangerous when they find the dead body of the “Cat Lady”. It’s a suspenseful thriller filled with twists and turns. But it goes much deeper than the average thriller, it delves into the relationships of the three girls and there’s also life lessons embedded in the story.

 

How did you come up with the idea for your book?

 

From some of my own exploits as a teen. When I was younger I wanted to be a detective too, much like the main character Sarah. Of course, I never investigated a murder but my friends and I did investigate a case of vandalism in our neighborhood. We never solved the crime, but that summer was one of the best summers of my childhood.

 

How many cats do you have?

 

We have two cats, Mickey and Baby

 

How often do you write and normally what is the setting like (I write with music in the background or some kind of noise)?

 

I write most mornings. That’s when my sons are most active and play together. Since they’re occupied I’m able to get some writing done. The background noise is usually my kids playing Transformers or Toy Story.  Then in the afternoon I take the kids out for an activity, like the beach or the zoo, anything that’ll keep them away from the TV.

This will be the first year that both boys will be in school full time.  So, I plan on getting a lot of writing done. I’m working on the third Super Spies book and a coming of age Young Adult Novel.

 

On average, how many times do you reread your books, before sending it for publishing?

Oh…that’s a tough question. I would have to guess at least 5-10 times. And that’s just a guess it’s probably more. I’m always looking for ways to improve my stories, either by making scenes scarier or making my dialogue spicier, that kind of thing.

 

Which character from your book would you like to partner with as a detective and why?

That’s a tough question, because I like the main character Sarah because she’s so smart and confident in her beliefs but Jackie makes the adventure fun. She’s quite spontaneous. Hmmm…I guess I’ll have to pick Sarah because she is so determined and focused.

How do you think the conversations would go?

 

I think they would probably go with Sarah coming up with some crazy scheme to find the villain and me being older and wiser (wink) would find flaws with her ideas. J Then there would be a heated debate with her conceding to my point of view…but very reluctantly.   Jackie would be the peacemaker and Lacey would pick my side because she’s not as adventurous as Sarah.

 

So it is easy to say that if not writing you would like to be a detective?

 

LOL! Is it that obvious? I love fighting for the underdog, so yeah I guess I would love to be a detective.

What was the hardest part about writing this story?

 

Hmmm…I would have to say keeping the dialogue consistent. In real life teenagers have a tendency to copy each other. But in a book they can’t because their dialogue is part of their character development. So if Sarah has a favorite phrase, Jackie can’t use it even though in real life she would.

 

What motivates you to write a story?

 

Another good question! I would have to say when I come across a particular message that I want to communicate to readers I make up a story that illustrates that message. I try to be entertaining while at the same time, teach something.

 

Any tips to other authors on writing?

 

Yes, I would say keep writing and don’t let the rejection letters get you down. Everyone gets them. If I could be so bold as to offer advice to aspiring writers I would say don’t be afraid to ask an agent/publisher what they didn’t like about your manuscript. That’s what I did and I got that golden nugget that I needed to change the no to a yes. 

If you would like to be part of our Feature Friday program contact us at www.hotlitbooks.org.

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Top 10 Tips for Writers

5 Sep

Do you need help? We have answers! Read below for the top 10 tips for writers.

1. Write what you love. If you love romance then write it. Don’t write about something that you think will sell. This will not sell books people will read your passion.

2. Read out loud. When writing after you have finished for the day read out loud the chapter or the words you have just finished you will find your errors easier.

3. Take breaks. If you feel you are struggling or finding it difficult to finish a paragraph take a break, get outside for some fresh air. Also take breaks from your work it will give you a new look, a new perspective on what you have written.

4. Write, write, write…Write till you can not write any longer then edit. We have found that the most successful writers have written their best selling novels by just writing and not editing themselves automatically. Just continue to write and let the words flow onto the page until you can no longer write.

5. Stay focused. Distractions these days are easy to find. Get rid of your distractions. If you feel your computer is your distraction kick it “old school” and write on paper. 

6. Do your research. Nothing is worse than reading a book about a person or an area and the book is wrong. Research, research and more research. If you don’t know it, don’t write it.

7. Do not listen to anyone. Many writers listen to the fodder of others. Write what is in your heart and write how you know how to write. Write with confidence and vigor. People want to read your voice not someone else.

8. Know your market. After you have finally finished your book and not before figure out who the market really is. There are a lot of great sites out there that can help you with marketing your book and of course Hotlit Books can always help you.

9. Connect with your readers. This is the most simplest form of marketing. They want to know you the person, not just the author. Tell them something about you personally. Be vulnerable. Make yourself available to your readers.

10. Plan. Plan your novel. Do you have a plan? After you have finished writing this novel have you thought about what is next for your characters, if so have you let your readers know?  What type of social media are you using to let readers in on the idea? How long is it going to take? If you are not continuing with the novel what is next? How are you going to let your readers know? Planning is essential for sales also for your sanity.

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