Tag Archives: Blog Hop

Romance Writers Weekly – Publishing



This week on Romance Writers Weekly, Leslie Hachtel asks, “If you’re published, how is the business different than what you expected? If you’re planning to publish, what are your expectations?”

This is a sensitive subject for me at the moment. When I first began writing, I didn’t expect to publish. As time passed, a beta reader suggested I query my story.  It wasn’t until I joined a writing group that I made strides toward being published.

I entered the publishing world first by signing on with a small press for my paranormal novella which was published as an e-book and later in paperback.  Afterward, I won a contest with my novel, Hot as Blazes. By the next year, I’d obtained a contract with a major publisher. I was surprised by the number of editing rounds with the larger publisher.  My wonderful editor taught me more than I’d learned from reading books, conferences or even from fellow writers.

For me, getting published wasn’t about becoming a best-selling novelist but the hope of gaining a following of readers. As far as earnings, enough cash to pay for our family’s annual beach rental would be satisfying enough.

Sadly, neither goal has come to pass. To date, I’ve received one e-mail from a reader.  Though only one, it was the best review I could have wished for.  Reviews on my four published works have been above average. However, sales have yet to earn enough to even cover my annual RWA membership or the premium version of my WordPress website for a year.

A writer friend told me it took her seven years to build a following so I have a few years to go. I’ve never been a social butterfly and find the marketing aspect of authorship extremely difficult.  I’ve also found, unless you’re a best-selling author, promotion from any publisher is minimal at best. However, it you land a good editor, what you’ll learn will be worth the percentage in royalties.

I haven’t decided if I’ll continue to continue on the traditional publishing route or dip my toe into self-publishing. Now let’s hear from A.S. Fenichel and if you missed Brenda Margriet.


Chicago Fire meets Baywatch: A Hot as Blazes Review




This week’s question for the Romance Writers Weekly blog hop is from Kathryn Renard who is ahead of me on this week’s hop “Good reviews, we love them! Bad reviews, we hate them…but some of them are helpful. What was your favorite negative review?”

As for reviews, I usually scan the star ratings for a feel on how the book is doing before delving into comments.  It’s so hard to get reviews on Amazon, especially for newer authors, like me, who don’t have a large reader base. It takes 50 reviews before Amazon promotes a book and includes it in the scrolling feed, Customers Who Bought This Item also Bought.  You can love an author by leaving a review!

Of the couple one star reviews I’ve received, one reader hated my novella, White Doe, and ‘absolutely could not read another page,’ but gave no reason.

The worst review on my recently released SEAL story, Sand and Sin, Sand and Sinwas on Goodreads and the reader despised the cocky hero and thought he was using the single mom. Well…most SEALs are cocky and my heroine totally knew the conflicts of having a fling with a West Coast frogman when she lived in Virginia Beach. It had a HEA (happy ever after) so maybe the story triggered something in the reader’s past.

Now, for my favorite negative: “Baywatch meets Chicago Fire” by The Book Reading Gals on Amazon. Below the picture is a legible version.

Baywatch review


Hot as Blazes_cover_New_series“Thoughts: This is typically a book I would love…we have the guy crushing on the girl for years, the girl secretly loves the guy – not to mention hot firefighters! However, there was a bit of a lack of connection for me with this one…I just didn’t feel the emotions between the characters, and that is a big part of the book for me. In addition to that, I had an issue with the maturity level of the characters. For some reason, this one had a little bit of a New Adult vibe to it, and I just couldn’t shake that feeling the whole time I was reading it. I can’t really pinpoint anything in the book that substantiates my feeling regarding that, but just the writing itself sort of read that way and gave me that impression.

When it comes to this title, think Chicago Fire meets Baywatch and that about sums it up. A decent read overall.”

My thoughts: No other reviewer,  my critique group, or beta reader ever said Hot as Blazes read like New Adult story. It’s also four peppers on the heat scale!

On the bright side, I loved their blurb ‘think Chicago Fire meets Baywatch’ and have used it in promo on social media, even though it was probably meant as a slam.

Pirates-683x1024Now on to the witty, S. C. Mitchell,  to see what he as to say about his most negative review. Check out his new book, Pirates of the Dark Nebula.