Book Raffle, week 2

Last week’s winner has been chosen. Time for another round of ‘Tis More Blessed!

Once again, I’m giving away a pair of ebooks: MATCHBOX GIRLS and INFINITY KEY.

You can enter immediately below, just as with last week. I’ll stick a description of the books below the raffle form, in case you’re new.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 Marley Claviger is just trying to get her life together. Stumbling into an ancient conflict between celestial forces is going to make that a whole lot harder…  When Marley wakes up to a phone call from a pair of terrified children, she doesn’t expect to be pulled into a secret war. She rescues them from an empty house and promises to find their missing uncle. She even manages to feed them dinner. But she barely feels competent to manage her own life, let alone care for small children with strange, ominous powers…  And when a mysterious angelic figure shows up and tries to claim the girls, it all falls apart…  Plagued by visions of disaster, Marley has no idea what she’s gotten herself into, but she knows one thing: magical or not, the kids need her.

and

As her best friend is pulled into the supernatural underworld, Branwyn isn’t about to sit on the sidelines. Unfortunately, Branwyn is decidedly mortal, and in the supernatural underworld, humans are weak and helpless, no better than toys, tools and prey. But she isn’t having any of that. Branwyn wants to face the world on her own terms, mortal or not.  When she strikes a bargain with an imprisoned faerie, Branwyn thinks she’s found the solution. He’ll teach her magic and she’ll use that magic on his behalf. It’s a great deal, until she discovers what the faeries really want from her: there’s a door that only she can open… 

You can win other books in this blog event by clicking through to the other raffles below.

Book Raffle!

Milo  James Fowler has organized a blog book raffle, which I’ve decided to participate in. Each Friday in December, you can enter to win an ebook copy of both MATCHBOX GIRLS and INFINITY KEY. For those stopping by for the first time, MATCHBOX GIRLS and INFINITY KEY are contemporary fantasy novels.

 Marley Claviger is just trying to get her life together. Stumbling into an ancient conflict between celestial forces is going to make that a whole lot harder… 

When Marley wakes up to a phone call from a pair of terrified children, she doesn’t expect to be pulled into a secret war. She rescues them from an empty house and promises to find their missing uncle. She even manages to feed them dinner. But she barely feels competent to manage her own life, let alone care for small children with strange, ominous powers… 

And when a mysterious angelic figure shows up and tries to claim the girls, it all falls apart… 

Plagued by visions of disaster, Marley has no idea what she’s gotten herself into, but she knows one thing: magical or not, the kids need her.

and

As her best friend is pulled into the supernatural underworld, Branwyn isn’t about to sit on the sidelines. Unfortunately, Branwyn is decidedly mortal, and in the supernatural underworld, humans are weak and helpless, no better than toys, tools and prey. But she isn’t having any of that. Branwyn wants to face the world on her own terms, mortal or not. 
When she strikes a bargain with an imprisoned faerie, Branwyn thinks she’s found the solution. He’ll teach her magic and she’ll use that magic on his behalf. It’s a great deal, until she discovers what the faeries really want from her: there’s a door that only she can open… 

I’ve offered a variety of ways to enter. Please do! Oh, and the ebooks won’t be subject to DRM so if you’re not that interested, you can gift them to a friend.  You can also check in again next Friday to enter another round!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Infinity Key Launchday!

Infinity Key is now officially available in fine online retailers and also from the Candlemark & Gleam website! I’ll get some permanent links up on the sidebar (or maybe a book page?) soon.

Really, I should have had everything ready to go, but I have been SO BUSY finishing Senyaza 3 and now working on revisions for Citadel of the Sky. I have some short deadlines and a ton of work to do, but I’m hoping to be able to take December 15-Jan 1 off. It’ll be bliss!

Matchbook

If you purchased a physical copy of Nightlights from Amazon, you can now get the ebook version free via Amazon’s Matchbook program. I realize this may be slightly less exciting for Nightlights than it might be for other books (since you can always read Nightlights for free on this website) but hey.

There’s about one week left on the Infinity Key Kickstarter. That also comes with a bundled copy of the ebook. 🙂

The baby’s grandma gave him a Curious George Halloween book. He was so excited he almost climbed out of his crib for it. Now he gets to lay in bed and read just like his big brother, and boy is he. And that means I should get back to work on Senyaza #3. I want to submit it by Nov 5, when I will move on to revising the Harlequin projects. It’s going to be a busy year.

INFINITY KEY Kickstarter is live!

This is it. Preorders of INFINITY KEY are now live @ http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/candlemarkandgleam/print-release-of-infinity-key

You can get a paperback of IK, a signed paperback of IK, a matched set of IK and its prequel, etc.

The basic financial goal is pretty simple and straightforward. But I’d like to use the Kickstarter as a means of really polishing my writing skills and developing the setting. So if this Kickstarter does as well as the MATCHBOX GIRLS one, you’ll not only get getting INFINITY KEY but also the massive amount of additional material I’ll be producing as stretch goals. And hey– you can, if you want– even make requests about which elements of the Senyaza setting I develop further. And you can bet I’ll be listening very closely to the fans and supporters who make writing these stories worthwhile.

Let’s see, what else to say… The Kickstarter for MATCHBOX GIRLS was the most success I’ve ever experienced. And INFINITY KEY is getting better advance press. So I’m hopeful here that I can expand my reach a bit more and keep this whole thing going. Fingers crossed, and thanks for taking a look!

Infinity Key tidbits

First: The Kickstarter for INFINITY KEY starts real soon now. Somewhere between 2-5 days, we hope. It is going to be epic. It will have a lot of rewards that will hopefully appeal to, well, readers. Would you like to see a cool video we made promoting it? Of course you would.

Additionally, INFINITY KEY got a really nice Publishers’ Weekly review.  PW is one of the industry journals that libraries and other purchasing institutions use to make decisions, so if you’re interested in reading a paperback of IK but can’t afford it right now, that good review should help you convince your library to order it for you!

In other news: I ran a Facebook ad campaign for a few days. It was supposed to get me a minimum of 5 new page likes; it got me 1. That was certainly educational. Goodreads ads are at least a lot more fun. I wrote a lot of very different fun blurbs for Matchbox Girls. Unfortunately while I know which kind of ad didn’t work, the rest of them seemed to vary in popularity by day.

I’m also going to put up a Senyaza website in the next week or two, collecting up all of the bonus material, ranging from the postcards from the last Kickstarter to the various in-character interviews that have been posted as guest blogs. Some of this stuff will probably be more interesting to people who have already read the first book and now it will all be in one place.

My baby is standing on a stool in front of the sink trying to drink the warm water I put into a large soaking bowl. He’s certainly belching a lot as he says, “Wawa…” At least it’s clean. I think earlier he was trying to drink (and splash in) soapy water… I should probably hop up and mop up the mess and change his clothes, don’t you think?

Layers

Layers! Our word of the day! They’re  a great way to tackle tough projects!

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My first baby was quiet and mostly self-entertaining. All he wanted was to be near me. And I’m lazy. So when I wasn’t doing something out of the house with him, I sat around goofing off a lot. I eventually came up with a basic chore list, because baby = you need clean dishes and laundry sometimes, and I worked through it. It worked for a few years.

My second baby doesn’t let me sit around and goof off. So now that school and jobs have started and I’m his only daytime companion, he provides the final bit of motivation I need to not sit around all day. Still, I have trouble tackling big projects. I’m great at the first 80% of almost any organization or tidying project, which of course only takes about 20% of the time. It’s harder for me to do that last 20%.

So these days I work in layers. I use the UFYH of 20 minutes on/10 minutes off (although sometimes I skip the 10 minutes) and I’ve divided my morning up into rooms to work on. Each room gets 20 minutes a day, up to 3x a week for the heavily used rooms. And since the basic tidying I mastered with Robin generally takes no more than 10 minutes, each time I do 20 minutes of work in a room, I dig a bit further below the surface.

I’m not sure where the journey is going to take me or how long I’ll keep it up. But right now, it’s making a difference. Non-crucial quick little tasks that I’ve procrastinated on for months or years are getting done. Things are getting put away. The exhaust hood over my stove is grime-free for the first time in too long to share. It’s cool.

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I’m on the downward slope in writing Wolf Interval. (I have no idea if that title will stick. I like it but justifying it may be too hard.) I’m going to reach the final scene in two weeks, or three, or four. Probably not more than four, although I’ve given myself six. Which is good, because I have to go back through the book and add in a lot of details. I work in layers there, too. It feels like painting a picture, starting with broad swathes of color over the pencil-strokes of outline, then passing through again to add in depth, background, expression and detail. Honestly it’s one of my favorite parts of writing, because it’s one of the few times when I’m absolutely certain I’m improving the work.

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Layers! They’re how social change happens, too, you know. It’s why it seems like we keep fighting the same old battles over and over again. Things improve each sweep, but there’s an awful lot of grime to scrub away and sometimes you need time away in order to look at the mess with fresh eyes.

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Oh, and a kid story for you:

My love for Killian was sorely tested yesterday when he saw me eating a Lindor truffle and demanded one himself. My preciouses were  at war.  (It wasn’t ‘ooh what are you eating I want some’. He went and found the bag and pointed at it and exclaimed “HELP!” imperatively.) (Six months ago, he found the bag of writing truffles I’d stashed in my room and ate/destroyed them all. I stopped buying them after that for a long time. He didn’t forget.)
Anyhow, so I gave him one. Then I hid the bag. And I opened my second truffle behind my back. From across the room, he heard the rattle of wrapper and came running. Because I am living in a commercial. What was I supposed to do? I gave him half. And he carefully licked out the filling then offered me the melting shell. Aw. Lindor teaches sharing.
It never occurred to me when imagining having kids that they would like the same kinds of treats I do. I’m used to being exceptional in my relationship with chewing gum, for example. I certainly didn’t expect to have to beat my kids off with a stick (or actually just let them have the damn gum). You’d think I would have expected my children to, y’know, inherit some of my traits. Or maybe, if you know me, you wouldn’t have…

Feminist Kickstarter praised, slammed: news at 11.

Let’s add to a headache and incipient cold a general state of pissiness over the attacks being made on http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/susanwilson/9-year-old-building-an-rpg-to-prove-her-brothers-w/comments# . Let me be clear: my irritation is not out of blind support for the Kickstarter. I haven’t backed it. I’m not sure I would even if I could because the presentation isn’t selling me. I’m very curious about the conversations at Kickstarter over the project because it does skate close to violating KS’s own guidelines. And I’m not certain about how the extra money will be used.

And yet, the comment thread there is full of people who have spent $1 temporarily in order to post nasty and deceptive comments attacking the project. People citing research posted on Reddit’s Men’s Rights forum, which immediately gets me suspicious enough to do my own basic research to find out the truth. (Hint: former owner of website that was sold to Kinkos.com in 2000 does not equal ‘former owner of Kinkos.com’).

The project is no different than many other projects posted by financially successful people to fund their projects and get a publicity boost and spread the word of a pet issue, except the creator is maybe not as smooth at selling herself as Amanda Palmer.

This is just a stunning example of how appropriate opposition can rile me up. Somebody try to claim that the hate directed at the campaign isn’t exactly the sexism the campaign was created to speak against and I’ll point again at the Reddit forum members spamming the comments thread. What the fuck, people.

Oh, and yes, Kickstarter needs to allow backers to be banned from commenting or even backing. Why doesn’t this exist?