MATCHBOX GIRLS sale!

Hey there! Matchbox Girls is 99 cents at Amazon/Nook/Kobo. It’s also available for the same price and DRM-free at my publisher, Candlemark & Gleam.

Soon we’ll be doing a cover reveal (and hopefully a Goodreads entry) for WOLF INTERVAL, which is Book #3 of the SENYAZA SERIES. It’s due out in October!

For those new to this urban fantasy series, each of the three SENYAZA books follows a different heroine (two of them costar in #4, which is currently being written) as they face angels, faeries and monsters. This sale is a great time to give it a try, or if you’re already a reader, let a friend know!

Feature Complete!

The book that might or might not still be known as Gravity's Angels is Feature Complete. Now all that remains is QA and bugfixing.

Er, I guess we call that 'a finished draft' and 'revision'. Right?

Anyhow. After a TON of work getting to this point (it's 82k but eking out that 82k against the backdrop of household and baby was HARD) I feel like I deserve a celebration. Jimmy, where are the balloons?

Blog Tour Bonus Interview

Well, after the disastrous ending of the last Character Backstage, I think we’re done with these interviews. Thank you, everyone, for—

[thumping off stage]

Lissa: Hey! We want to play!

Kari: Yeah! We can sit in chairs and talk just like grown-ups!

Um…

Kari: Everybody else got to play. Don’t be mean!

[They each climb into a chair.]

All right. Go ahead.

Kari: What do we do?

Uh, you ask questions.

Kari: [beaming] I’m good at this!

Lissa: We have to ask grown-up questions. [voice deepens, becomes stern] Kari, why did you eat all the chocolate cookies?

Kari: I shared them with you!

Lissa: You did not!

Kari: I did too. I put them on a plate and I said, “These are for Lissa.” But you didn’t eat them, and I didn’t want to waste them.

Lissa: Kari Thorne, you go to your room!

Kari: No! It’s my turn to ask a question. Don’t you think Marley is pretty?

Lissa: I dunno. She’s not pretty like the other ladies Uncle Zachariah knows. But she has a very nice smile.

Kari: Lissa Thorne, you go to your room!

Lissa: Why? I answered!

Kari: I think Marley and Uncle Zach should get married. Then Marley could stay with us all the time.

Lissa: I don’t know if that’s a good idea…

Kari: Why not?

Lissa: Dunno. Might make some people grumpy.

Kari: Those people are mean and don’t deserve Marley.

Lissa: I guess so. My turn. You should give me your doll, since you ate my cookies.

Kari: What? No way! You had your own doll, I saw it.

Lissa: I lost it. When—

[loud buzzing]

Lissa: What was that?

There are some things you’re not supposed to talk about in these interviews.

Kari: Why not? What are we supposed to talk about?

Casual things. Interpersonal things.

Kari: I don’t know what that means. What does the voice mean, Lissa?

Lissa: Boring things, I think.

Kari: [big sigh] Of course.

Lissa: I think if we made the voice and the camera go away, we could say whatever we wanted, though.

Kari: Can’t be bad.

Lissa: Not bad. Just point them at boring stuff. All the boring things they want.

Kari: Ooh! Like that tv channel with lots of old men talking.

Lissa: Yeah. Like that. Have fun, voice person.

Kari: You mean don’t have fun.

Lissa: Oh yeah. Bye!

MATCHBOX GIRLS is out!

I’m so proud to share that MATCHBOX GIRLS, from Candlemark & Gleam, has officially been launched into the world. You can still enter for a free copy by checking out the ongoing blog tour (linked below). I also figured out how to reorganize the menus at the top of the page and now there’s  a landing page for the book linked in up there.

 

Here’s the schedule for the blog tour! (swiped from the Candlemark & Gleam post)

2/15: Bibliognome

2/16: Fantasy Nibbles

2/20: Rowan Cota on G+

2/21 (release day!): The Discriminating Fangirl

2/22: Adventures of 2.0

2/23: Hopeless Bibliophile

2/27: Candlemark & Gleam

2/28: Books Make Me Happy

3/01: Jo the Booky

There will be digital book giveaways at some (all?) of the blogs, plus there’s an overall grand prize which includes a paperback copy of the book and a number of other goodies. Here’s a widget to enter (or you can go to the main C&G post linked above). It’s one of those ‘earn multiple entries’ kind of thing, so check it out.
Continue reading “MATCHBOX GIRLS is out!”

Matchbox Girls Blog Tour and Update!

Two posts in one! Crossposting madness!

Guess what! In 7 days, Matchbox Girls will be out!

And in 44 hours, the Kickstarter to preorder copies and supercool bonuses is closing. And there’s a blog tour starting in a day. Schedule posted below! I may also post direct links the day of? Maybe? It depends on what’s going on.

Working on the bonuses has been interesting. Matchbox Girls is a story floating on the top of a lot of world building and character development, and all the launch preparation has given me an opportunity to write up some of that supplemental material and present it, hopefully in an intriguing way. I’m especially excited about the poster illustrated by Karen Gadient , which gives me an opportunity to provide details on one of the forms of magic in the setting. I’m also excited (and nervous) about the in-character interviews which will be bulking out the blog tour. I love the idea of showing non-canon character interactions that (ideally) still provide hints about the story itself.

The Kickstarter itself is at 101 backers. There’s a stretch goal placed at $5000 which would give everybody who gets the paperback a copy of the poster. Reaching it is the sort of dizzying dream I’m almost afraid to have. But so much of this has been like a dream: excellent reviews, phenomenal support from wonderful people, and in the end, my book, beautiful and real. So… I might as well keep dreaming. In this last 44 hours of the Kickstarter, if you can think of anyplace else to share it, anybody else who might give it a signal boost, help me out!

Here’s the schedule for the blog tour! (swiped from the Candlemark & Gleam post)

2/15: Bibliognome

2/16: Fantasy Nibbles

2/20: Rowan Cota on G+

2/21 (release day!): The Discriminating Fangirl

2/22: Adventures of 2.0

2/23: Hopeless Bibliophile

2/27: Candlemark & Gleam

2/28: Books Make Me Happy

3/01: Jo the Booky

There will be digital book giveaways at some (all?) of the blogs, plus there’s an overall grand prize which includes a paperback copy of the book and a number of other goodies. Here’s a widget to enter (or you can go to the main C&G post linked above). It’s one of those ‘earn multiple entries’ kind of thing, so check it out.
Continue reading “Matchbox Girls Blog Tour and Update!”

Speechless Writer

Publishers want to sell books. In order to facilitate this, they try to solicit what are known as ‘blurbs’ from other published authors for upcoming books. For Matchbox Girls, we approached several writers I know and some of them agreed to read my book. They provided blurbs! I got one from Jenna Moran, who probably sent half of you here to start with. I got one from award-winning romance author Robin D. Owens. And I also got one from urban fantasy author CE Murphy!

So my publisher is also running a Kickstarter to handle preorders for Matchbox Girls. It’s been doing pretty well; it met the minimum pretty quickly and leveled off at about 40 or so backers. That seemed pretty good for a new launch from a micropress.

Then CE Murphy published a review of Matchbox Girls on her blog. It isn’t the first review published; I’ve gotten a few good ones from a couple of early book bloggers, which I’ll probably aggregate on an upcoming Senyaza Series site after I get some other stuff done. But sometime after CE Murphy published her review, I started getting a new trickle of preorders.

Well, I saw ‘trickle’ but 36 hours after the trickle started, the number of preorders has almost doubled and it’s at 900% funding. So maybe it’s more like a flash flood. Yet very small in the grand scheme of publishing launches but it still has my head spinning.

This is so exciting I don’t even know how to properly express myself. I’m not good at talking about myself. So I’m just putting it out there. If you’re interested in a paperback copy of the novel, this is a great opportunity to get one. There’s about a week left to sign up.

Other cool things are going on, too, some of which I shouldn’t talk about yet. But one I can talk about is a blog tour! My publisher has lined up a handful of blogs for me to make appearances on, around the time of the Matchbox Girls launch on February 21st. Some of them will have guest posts and some of them will have in-character posts– specifically, characters from the novel interviewing each other. I’m pretty excited about that. I’ll be posting an itinerary closer to the date, hopefully. (Assuming my other Interesting Event doesn’t take precedence. If it does the posts should still happen but I may be… busy.)

Two weeks to go!

Titling a novel (a love story)

I love good titles and I work hard at coming up with them. But I had a lot of trouble with the title for Matchbox Girls.

I think a good title needs to both sum up a central element of the story and, if possible, provide additional insight into the whole story. It’s the capstone of the project: what is first seen and often last applied. At least half of my projects have only working title until more than halfway through the first draft, until I can gather up everything I want the title to convey and analyze it and dig through dictionaries and thesauri.

The first title I remember for Matchbox Girls was Under Bridges. I was pretty sure that it was just a working title; I knew conceptually what I was referring to, but it was a stretch and mostly made me think of trolls instead of celestial entities. When I finally sat down to brainstorm, I’d decided I wanted the title of the book to focus attention on the relationship between Marley and the twins. And I wanted a reference to something small, and I wanted a reference to fire. So I made a list of various words and combined them into titles.

(Oh, and I wanted something that could set up a scheme that could apply to a whole series of books.)

And Matchbox Girls just came to me. I loved it immediately. But I wouldn’t let myself have it. “It sounds too much like a totally unrelated Hans Christian Anderson story,” I told myself, and I settled rather glumly on Sparksister.

But secretly, my brain kept whispering Matchbox Girls, Matchbox Girls. I’d Google the term late at night to see if anybody else had used it (not really), or how often it led to a HCA story (practically never). I’d argue with myself about all the reasons it was perfect (which I won’t inflict on you).  I asked my housemates about it. Then I asked them again. I told my friends how perfect it was, and how tragic it was that I couldn’t use it.

I whispered it so much to myself that it finally wore through the HCA block. “It’s striking,” I admitted to myself (“Hah, I see what you did there,” myself whispered.) “I guess I’ll let book and title come together, and somebody else can suggest changing it.” I figured it couldn’t hurt any more than Sparksister, which sounded to me like it belonged on an other-world fantasy with witches and forests. (I was really rather irritated at poor Sparksister by then.)

So I sent out the book to agents, and, well, I didn’t get many nibbles. Maybe the title was to blame! But it was too late to change it! So I moved onto publishers, and Candlemark & Gleam accepted it! No title change required!

So my manuscript and its title got a Happily Ever After. Yay!

(Hmm. Story needs more conflict. Exclamation points do not substitute for tension, except maybe in a silly blog post.)