I’ve been writing the Lost and Found series since 2012. That was the date I first published The Embattled Road, scared to death that people would think I was crazy writing about disabled veterans. But now, 5 years later, I realize that making the public aware of vets is just as important as it always was. More so now, maybe, because we’re not seeing war coverage everyday on the news. Don’t be fooled, though, people are still dying. We just aren’t hearing about it as much. The new President and the circus in Washington just take top billing.
I told my husband the other day about something one of my characters had done in a book (specifically, John Palmer complaining about puppy training from Forget Me Not) and he looked at me like I was crazy because I was talking about the incident as if it had really happened. And in my mind it HAD happened!
These men are so real to me that yes I laughed when I wrote that scene, then had to tell a friend and my hubby about it.
How could I ever NOT write about them?
Yes, I’m heading in a different direction with the Honeywell, Texas series, one that I’m SUPER excited about, but you’ll see many of the same characters from the LNF series included. And, me being me, there will be veterans involved, as well as other subjects I’m passionate about. I talk about women’s issues, the crisis with the wild horses and the BLM, and veterans. I’ll be introducing new characters for you to fall in love with, and revisiting favorites. Exactly how a favorite series should be, right?
You’ll see the 4 books of the Honeywell series this summer, and maybe a surprise or two for the latter part of the year. Still planning to release Aiden’s book early next year. Actually, early next year I have several projects in the works. Sigh… More reading for you guys!
Damn, I’m a bad blogger!
I was working on the website today and realized that it had been more than a year since I had blogged about anything. So let’s talk.
2016 was a tough year publishing wise. The market got a hell of a lot tougher and it was harder to connect with our readers. A lot of books flooded the market, diluting the pond, so to speak. I think I learned a lot, but I definitely didn’t sell as many books as 2015.
All around me, I see notes and posts from authors that are being forced to go back to the EDJ- Evil Day Job. That’s so disheartening to me because this profession truly is one of love for most authors.
I’m lucky enough that that isn’t a possibility. Money wise I’m still making a better living doing this than being a cop, plus I have a much lower risk of having my ass kicked or being bitten by a dog, or being involved in a high-speed crash. The list could go on. Lol!
The challenges in the market make small business owners like me work to stay pertinent. Experts say you need to release fast, fast, fast to stay in the public’s eye, and to a certain extent, I believe that, but it will burn you out. When you released a book 4 years ago, it stayed popular for longer. Now when you release a book you have a couple of weeks of popularity, then you start to sink faster without huge advertising intervention. It’s very daunting trying to stay up on the market, as well as write the next blockbuster at the same time.
Some people can’t, so they’re forced back to the EDJs!
So, I’m changing a few things up this year.
One, I’m staying closer to home. While I love going to conferences and meeting readers and seeing author friends, that doesn’t get my books written. The planning that goes into even a small day signing is significant and very distracting. If it’s an out of town trip, the planning is even more involved with travel, hotel, reader meets, author meets, plus everything you have to plan for at home before you leave. I have kids and horses and dogs and a wandering hubby I have to keep track of. This year I have 5 definite conferences, with maybe a couple of smaller, close ones thrown in. Definites are Washington, Pa, Lexington, Louisville, Atlanta, and Huntington. Check out my appearances tab on my website!
Two, I’m diversifying! This month, after I release SEAL’s Christmas Dream, I will have 16 books out in the Lost and Found series. Holy crapola! That’s a lot! And as much as I love the guys at LNF, I need to change directions a bit. I’m spinning off a series about Chad’s ranch. He and Lora are getting married on the Blue Star ranch, and his brother Brock and sisters need to find their own love! This will definitely be more Western!
Yes, I will also be starting the Dogs of War series, toward the end of the year. You will learn why Aiden/Jaime is the way he is, and we’ll meet his fire squad. I’m excited to write them. This will definitely have a bit of a paranormal bent, similar to Christine Feehan’s Ghost Walkers.
I’ll be doing an Elle James Brotherhood Protectors Kindle world in June! So keep a look out for that! As well as a couple other secret projects in the works!
Jeez, what else….
Yes, I have a second Needful Heart book that needs let out, tentatively titled A Hopeful Soul. Everyone always asks about this. Time, time, time…
Three, I’ll be opening a store here on my website, where I might offer limited signed print runs and swag and the like. I’m pretty excited about it.
Four, I’m going to be blogging more. I want people to be able to find information about what I’m doing and who I’m working on more easily. Also, for those that are into publishing, I’m going to be blogging about doing it yourself, even in this hard market. There’s so much misinformation out there that it’s disheartening, and I want people to be able to see how I did it myself. So, stay tuned for that.
Okay, I think that’s all I wanted to convey. Any big plans for your year ahead?
So, in 2015 I promised myself that 2016 would involve less travel and more writing. Well, you know that saying about best-laid plans…
I have several super secret projects on my list that I can’t talk about (although you will absolutely love them, just fyi!), but there are several highlights that I CAN tell you about.
- Rachel is going to be expanded and released. Hopefully this January.
- Duncan is being worked on as we speak. Projected release date? I’m going to say as soon as possible. I would like to say May or June. But I have a couple of projects that I HAVE to release before his.
- I have a Kindle World book releasing January 26th in Cat Johnson’s World, where you’ll get to meet Zero and Izzy.
As for traveling, well, here is my current list. If you are in the area and CAN NOT attend the event, please send me a note or message. Maybe we can get together for a coffee or something!
- February 27th I have a local signing at Midway College for Woodford Country Library. You can find the details here: http://www.woodfordcountylibrary.com/event/1192
- March 18-20th I’ll be in Biloxi, MS for the Booking in Biloxi Event at the IP Casino! Here’s the FB page- https://www.facebook.com/bookinginbiloxi/?fref=ts
- April 12-17 I’ll be at the Rio in Las Vegas for the Romantic Times Convention! https://www.rtconvention.com
- May 13-15 Nashville, TN I’ll be there for the Weekend With the Authors event. http://www.aweekendwiththeauthors.com
- June 10-12 I’ll be in West Chester, Ohio for the Lori Foster Event. http://readerauthorgettogether.com
- In September I’ll be at the Novelist Inc Conference in St. Petersburg, Florida, which is an industry conference. But I will be available to readers in the area!
- November 4-5 I’ll be in Huntington, WV for the Rebels and Readers Conference. http://www.rebelsnreaders.com/rarae-2016.html
Jeez! See what I mean? And there may be a couple of other smaller events thrown in later. I truly hope to see you at one of these!
I know a lot of you have been waiting for Diego’s book, and it’s now up for preorder. Here’s the AMAZON link and I will list more as I get them.
And here’s a fresh excerpt as well!
“How long have you had an earring?”
His mouth twitched. “Well, I had one when I was a kid. The hole never sealed over. Once I got out of the Marines I started wearing it again.” He shrugged a little. “Kind of balances out the patch.”
Lilly grinned at him, resting her hand on his shoulder. “It does,” she agreed. “It’s very sexy.”
That hadn’t been what he’d meant.
She squeezed his shoulder, then slid her fingers up to the collar of his jacket. She stroked his hair, her sharp fingernails dragging lightly over his skin. Diego narrowed his eye at her, wondering what she was playing at. Chills chased across his shoulders. “You’re playing with fire, little girl.”
One sleek brow lifted and she gave him a mischievous look. “Little girl? Is that how you see me? I assure you I’m not.”
Those damnable fingers reached forward and dragged a line of fire along his jawline. Diego could hear the rasp of her nails along the short growth of his beard. “Lilly, I’m not sure what you think you’re doing, but I don’t think it’s a good idea.”
“I’m trying to get to know you. Getting to know the feel of you. I thought now was a perfect time. You can’t take your hands off the wheel and you can’t walk away like you normally do.”
“Sh…” she whispered.
If they weren’t on a schedule, he would whip the car to the side of the road and kiss her like he’d been dreaming about. Instead, he kept the car steady and let her touch him. Honestly, it felt better than anything he’d ever felt before. All she did was run her fingers through his hair, down his neck and across his shoulders, but it was something he wasn’t used to feeling. It had been a long time since he’d been with a woman, and an even longer time since he’d been in an actual relationship. Then she leaned forward a little more and suddenly her fingers were inside the collar of his shirt, moving around toward his chest. Diego felt his heart skip a beat and his hands twitched on the wheel. When he glanced into the mirror to see if Lilly had noticed, she was staring back at him, grinning. There was a light in her eyes that told him she was taking great delight in rattling him.
Diego tightened his fists on the steering wheel, arousal contracting every muscle in his body. Lilly Carmichael needed to be put in her place, but he was not in a position to do it just then.
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When Harper Preston finds himself flat in a hospital bed after a botched op, he’s okay with dealing with the fallout. If he dies, he’s lived well past his expiration date. The only people that will notice his passing are the guys he works with at Lost and Found Investigative Service.
Then his estranged wife arrives.
Cat Preston is thankful and horrified when she’s called to her husband’s side. He’s been shot. Again. But now that she’s found him she’s going to make the most of the opportunity. If it were up to Harper, she would be out of his life completely because he thinks it’s the best thing for the family.
With a little SEAL abduction (for his own good of course) maybe she can convince him otherwise…