Honored beyond words

So, this has been a pretty incredible week and it’s only Thursday!

On Monday, Casey and I released the anniversary edition of Dark Bishop. It has a beautified inside and was re-edited. We are so proud of the final product. We also put it on sale for those of you that hadn’t had a chance to read it yet. It’s only 99 PENNIES until Sunday, January 24th. Here’s the link, just in case you want it. (CLICK HERE)

THEN… on Wednesday, Casey and I were honored with an award for Dark Bishop. It was chosen as Book of the Year 2015 by Epilogues Book Club! If you haven’t checked them out on Facebook you really should. The ladies that run it are FABULOUS and I’m not just saying that because they gave us an award.

The title of this post is ‘Honored Beyond Words’ for a reason. I have been trying to formulate a way to express my gratitude to the readers and to Epilogues all day long and I have come up with nothing. Zero. Zilch. As a writer, you would think that I’d be able to express my feelings and thoughts rather easily. Normally, I can. But this… it’s indescribable.

This is my first award.

I’ve never felt so incredibly honored or flattered.

The fact that I get to share this honor with my bestie, Author Casey Bond, is beyond amazing. I don’t think anything will ever compare to the way I felt the moment I learned that we had been chosen. Not anything book related anyway.

To sum it up, I’m humbled and honored and speechless. Winning an award makes the journey worthwhile for some but, for me, it’s the icing on the cake.

Have a great night all!

DB award

(Yes, I know my name is spelled wrong on the award. No, I don’t really care.)

 

Dark and twisted Anniversary

Happy Monday!

Today is a special day for myself and my bestie, Author Casey Bond. It was a year ago that we started writing Dark Bishop together. It was the most amazing experience I’ve ever had since I started my adventure of writing novels four years ago.

Dark Bishop holds a special place in my heart for many reasons. One, I wrote it with my best friend. Two, it’s dark and twisty, different from anything else I’ve ever written and all around, scary as hell. It’s hard to believe sometimes that these characters came from somewhere inside our minds.  Three… I just plain LOVE Jake Bishop!

Why am I talking about the anniversary of writing a book? Because it’s been given a new look!

A few months back, Casey and I had Dark Bishop re-edited and then re-formatted. It’s been beautified on the inside but still holds the same gorgeous cover we started with.

pb cover

While all of this was happening, we  decided to republish it as ONE BOOK ONLY instead of the 5 episodes that we had put it out as originally. We also decided to drop the price and only publish it on Amazon. For those of you that read on another platform, we apologize, but after much deliberation, we decided this was best for the book. This means that it is available for FREE to those that subscribe to Kindle Unlimited.

To celebrate all of this exciting news, Dark Bishop is going to be ON SALE for only 99 CENTS beginning today! The price will increase to $2.99 next Monday, January 25th, so snag it while it’s on sale if you haven’t picked up your copy yet. Here are you links: AMAZON US, AMAZON UK, AMAZON CA.

DB anniversary 3

Can’t decide if you’re ready for Jake? I completely understand. You may never be ready for him. Here are a few teasers in case you need help deciding…

DB social media postDB teaser 3 (1)10968709_439011432912967_2072173542_o

If you still can’t make up your mind, here’s the OFFICIAL book trailer for Dark Bishop…

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iLi3nlmvhd4]

Would you like to hear from Sydney and Jake? Well, Casey and I conducted a few interviews and here’s what they had to say. First, I sat down with sweet, innocent Sydney.

Me: I’m sitting here with Sydney Coder. Sydney has agreed to answer a few questions for us. I know that you’re all dying to ask about Jake so let’s jump right in. Welcome Sydney.

Sydney: Thank you for having me. I was told Jake is in the other room being interrogated as well.

Me: Casey would never interrogate anyone. Well, maybe a little. So Sydney, what is your perfect Sunday like?

Sydney: I work most Sunday so a day off for starters. If I had the day off, though… hmmm. I guess I would try to explore the city more. New Orleans is a beautiful city, full of life and culture. I would love to see more of it. I don’t have a ton of time these days, now that Jake’s become a part of my life.

Me: You said that you work most Sundays. What do like most about being a waitress? What do you hate most?

Sydney: What do I like most? I would have to say the money. You can make great money if you’re personable. I honestly enjoy taking care of people, I enjoy my job. As for what I like the least, working all the time. I need the money so I don’t ask for time off but it feels like I’m always working.

Me: What sorts of relationships have you had in the past? Was there someone special in your life before Jake came along?

Sydney: I’ve had exactly one boyfriend before and we were both too young to realize what it meant to be dating I think. He was a nice guy, don’t get me wrong, but Jake is completely different. There’s something special about him. I’m so happy I met him.

Me: If you were to put yourself on Match.com, what would your profile look like? This is just in case you and Jake don’t work out of course. Describe yourself for us.

Sydney: Well, I guess I would say that I’m tall and thin, not too tall, but taller than most females. I like to be outdoors. I prefer to wear jeans and a t-shirt over anything fancy. I’m a country girl at heart but I have big dreams. I think it’s important to share that because they would need to understand that I have goals in life that I plan on accomplishing. Nothing is going to stop me from getting to Hollywood.

Me: Describe in detail your ideal man.

Sydney: Oooh! Can I describe Jake? (I shake my head at her.) Fine but he’s damn near perfect. He would have to be a gentleman. Caring. Funny. Polite. Easy on the eyes. I know that sounds bad but I would need to find him attractive. What else? Oh! He has to be smart and driven. Goals are important. Well, mine are.

Me: Thank you so much Sydney for sitting down with me and talking. Good Luck with everything you have going on. Hopefully you won’t need that Match.com profile. Things with Jake seems to be going well so far.

Sydney: Things are great. Thanks so much for having me.

Casey sat down with Jake. He’s a little arrogant but still loveable…

Casey: Thanks for agreeing to speak with me today, Jake.

Jake: *smooths dress jacket and smiles* You’re most welcome, Mrs. Bond. Is it okay if I call you Mrs. Bond?

Casey: As long as you don’t ask if my husband’s name is James, that’s fine.

Jake: *chuckles* Noted.

Casey: Sydney Coder is in the next room being interviewed. What is the nature of your relationship with her?

Jake: *grins* Well…the nature of our relationship is a private matter.

Casey: You don’t want to talk about Miss Coder?

Jake: Not with you.

Casey: Fair enough. Let’s touch on some basic information. Describe your perfect woman.

Jake: There are no perfect women, just as there are no perfect men. And it is in the imperfection that beauty is found. It would be boring if everyone was perfect, or the same. So the perfect woman, is every woman.

Casey: *smiles* Good answer. Do you enjoy being an attorney?

Jake: *sighs* Most days my answer would be yes. Some days it is an emphatic no. I’m sure most people feel the same way about their careers.

Casey: Describe yourself, your appearance, etcetera…as if you were listing yourself on a dating website.

Jake: Let me first say that I am not listed on any dating websites. But, my description would say that I’m six feet tall, medium, muscular build, dark hair, green eyes. Successful attorney in the great state of Louisiana. *grins* Enjoys long walks on the beach and beautiful women.

Casey: Are you sure you wouldn’t like to say anything about Sydney Coder?

Jake: *smirks* I am positive.

Casey: Thanks for joining us today, Mr. Bishop.

Jake: The pleasure is all mine.

Be prepared… Dark Bishop is recommended for readers 18 and up due to graphic content. When we say dark, we mean it. Enjoy!

The Ugly Truth of Publishing & How BEST to Support Writers

What a great article!

What lies ahead for 2016

2015 has been an amazing year for me. I’m actually a little sad that it’s almost over. 🙁 I’m hoping that 2016 is just as fantastic but for very different reasons. So, what’s happening in the coming year? Well, here are my plan…

I currently have 6 books that want to be written. 6!!! I know that I won’t be able to write all of them in the next 12 months but you bet your butt I’m going to try. Which books exactly, you ask. Here’s the rundown.

Books 2, 3 & 4 in the Kiss series. Felicity, James and Will will each be getting their own story.

A standalone novel for one of the characters from the Holding On series. Do you need to read the Holding On series to understand it? No, but it will help. It’ll be called Regaining Strength.

I WILL finish Saving Bliss this year, even if it kills me! Owen and Bliss’ story needs to be told. First I need to figure out how to get Bliss to cooperate. She’s a bit of a b***h.

A standalone contemporary romance. I have a title in mind but I’m not sold on it just yet. The tagline won’t change, though, cuz I’m in love with it. “Every choice creates a ripple.” I might start this one first since I’m the most excited about it.

There are a few other mentionable things coming in 2016. First and foremost, my wedding.  I will probably disappear at the beginning of August to finalize all my plans. I’m apologizing in advance. I’m a little OCD when it comes to planning events and I have a feeling that my wedding will make it even more apparent.

Before the wedding, though, Lucky 13 will release in July. If you missed the big announcement, I signed a contract with Anchor Group Publishing for this book. I’m really excited about it. As soon as I have an exact release date I’ll post it. The book is finished – all 84,000 words and my two rounds of personal edits. Before it reaches your hands it will go through professional editing, then formatting, then cover design. I am working with the AMAZING Marisa Shor of Cover Me, Darling on my cover again. I love her work and I’m so thankful that Anchor Group allowed me to work with her on this project.

On top of all that, I do have a few signings planned this year. I won’t be doing any before the wedding. This means that I’ll miss Utopia in Nashville in June, one of my personal favorites. For those of you that I normally connect with there, don’t worry. I will be back in 2017. Here’s what I have slated for 2016:

  • Carolina Bookfest (October 15) – Charlotte, NC
  • Rebels & Readers (November 5) – Huntington, WV

I may be able to add to that list if I find something that’s close to home. There is an expo in March that I attended last year that I’m considering but I haven’t made up my mind yet. To keep up with the most recent happenings, you should sign up for my newsletter. It goes out monthly – the January issues is being sent tomorrow morning. Click HERE to sign up.

Well, that’s my plan for 2016. I’m not making any personal resolutions this year. I want to get in shape, become more discipline in my social media activities and such, but nothing that requires me to commit to it. These are things I want, not challenges. I’ll make them happen. My only professional resolution this year is to better connect with all of you. I think a great way to do that is to find ways to show you my appreciation more often. I have a few ideas. Make sure you follow my Facebook page to see what I have in store.

Happy New Year!

12 days of reviews

It’s time to start the party!

Attention all Indie authors! Sell your book and win a review!

Attention all readers! Find great new authors and enter to win an
iPad mini!

Do I have your attention? Good! Continue reading.

One of the biggest issues facing Indie authors today is getting reviews for their self-published books.

Jo Michaels holds an event each year in December to remedy the lack of reviews and to give readers a chance to win great prizes while discovering new authors.

It’s a huge pitch fest!

Last year, authors from all over joined in to pitch their books and win sales and reviews. Not just from Jo, but from tons of readers and bloggers attending the event.

At the core of the event is a huge giveaway for an iPad mini! This benefits all readers because they have a great new way to take their books on the go with any e-reader app.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
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If you want to get in on the pitch fest, head on over to Jo’s blog right now and read the rules on this page!

There are daily giveaways of gift cards, e-books, signed books, and tons of other goodies! Be sure and check out the books the authors are pitching, too!

rainbows covered in glitter

At the beginning on November, as I sat down and started to put words on paper for my 2015 #Nano project, I took a moment to think about what this book really meant to me. It’s book #10, written in the last three years. I’ve been published for 2 years as of November 23rd. To me, this is a big deal. I’m hitting double digits. I’m growing as an author, my writing is improving and I have somewhat of a fan base now.

The big question was… how am I going to make this book, this release, these characters special for all of you?

As I got farther into the project I fell more in love with the story line and the characters. After about a week it hit me. The answer had been in front of my face as I scrolled through Facebook, of course.

My first thought was, what if this is the wrong decision? I talked to the bestie (shout out to Casey Bond) and she helped me weigh the pros and cons because of course, there are going to be both. Then, I took the first step. I sent a personal message to someone I respect and look up to in the Indie community. She’s someone who is fierce about her work and helping others to succeed. She is none other than… Stacey Rourke.

I probed her with questions, asked about the process and how things are done. She was kind enough to answer all my questions honestly so I could make an informed decision.

Have I lost you yet?

No? Good. I’m just getting to the best part.

So, after thinking it over, I made the decision to put it together and submit. Yes, I said submit. Along with my very first query letter, I submitted the prologue and chapter 1 of Lucky 13 (my 2015 Nano project) to Anchor Group Publishing, Stacey Rourke’s publishing company.

Wait!

Before you start to throw things at me through the computer screen because I said I would never traditionally publish again… I take it back. I know what I said and the reason’s I said it still remain. After talking with Stacey and doing a little research, I found that I may have been judgemental about the traditional publishing world as a whole. I had a very bad experience, this is true, but it doesn’t mean that every experience with a publishing company will be like mine was.

I trust Stacey therefore I trust her with my book. If you know her you know why. You can’t put that much passion in such a small package without is radiating out like rainbow covered in glitter. Yep. I just went there.

I know… get on with the big announcement.

Well, I made Stacey cry. No, that’s not the announcement. I’m afraid after she reads the rest of the book she may cry again, and again, and… you get the picture. It’s a bit of a tear-jerker at times.

After a lot of thought and going back and forth with myself for a day or two while attempting to win Nano and finish Lucky 13, I decided that I wanted to take this chance. I want to give traditional publishing another shot. So she drew up a contract and I signed it.

Coming July 2016…

Lucky 13

Written by Rachael Brownell

Published by Anchor Group Publishing

Cover Design by Cover Me, Darling

On top of that…

I finished Lucky 13 on November 27th after writing over 80K words in 27 days. I’ll be hiding in my personal editing hell for the next two weeks if you need me.

 

Happy Holidays!!!!!!!!!!

 

EXCITING NEWS!!!

bigstock-Grunge-breaking-news-rubber-st-60436100.jpg

 

Keep your eyes peeled. December 1st I’m going to be making a HUGE announcement. If you happen to be a newsletter subscriber you will find out on November 30th. Watch your email!

If you would like to subscribe to my newsletter and be one of the first to know everything that’s happening, click HERE.

 

Two for $2

I’ve been in my office, hiding, for the past week. Doing what? Cleaning, organizing and prepping for NaNoWriMo. If you have no idea what that is… National Novel Writing Month. The goal? To write 50K in the month of November.

This is my first year participating and to say that I’m nervous is an understatement. I love the challenge. I love that this is going to push me to write more and often. I may hit the goal I may not. For me it’s not about that. November and NaNo are going to be about finding the right place to write, the right time of day to write and pushing past the writer’s block that’s been plaguing me since I finished Next.

It seems that I encounter it every year. Writer’s block, that is. In some way, shape or form it rears its ugly head and beats my confidence to the ground. No worries, though. I plan to hit back and harder this year. NaNo is going to be the perfect way to do it in my mind.

I’m getting off track though… sorry.

The reason for this post is to apologize for my absence this past month and to apologize for my upcoming absence next month. I know that I will be off-line A TON as I try to conquer my writers block and aim for 50K. To prove to you that I still care and value your patience, I will be running giveaways and sales the entire month of November. Keep your eyes peeled.

The first one starts TODAY!

99 Cents Each

A Secret Life, book one in the Secrets Duet, is on sale for only 99 PENNIES 10/26-11/1.  (FREE for KU subscribers.)  CLICK HERE

Secrets & Lies, book two in the Secrets Duet, is ALWAYS only 99 PENNIES. (FREE for KU subscribers.)  CLICK HERE

Get both for less than $2!!!

A Seret Life Cover  Secrets_&_Lies_Cover_for_Kindle

More deals and giveaways will be coming as the month goes along. Don’t forget that my monthly newsletter comes out in a few weeks too. There’s always something special for subscribers in there. If you haven’t signed up and want to receive it, click HERE.

Measuring Success

It was a long 15 months of planning and preparing but the 4 days I spent actually at Great Lakes Book Bash, hosting the con and making sure that things were running smooth, was worth every second. Don’t misunderstand, there were bumps in the road from beginning to end, even hours before the con started. It wasn’t perfect by any means. Perfection wasn’t the goal, though.

What was our goal then?

My main focus was on my exhibitors. I wanted them to have a good time. I wanted them to be successful. I wanted them to want to do it all over again.

Thankfully, they do. So, we’re going to. In 2017. Great Lakes Book Bash will invade Kalamazoo again and I can only imagine how epic version 2.0 will be.

What about this year? Well, here’s some of the highlights…

Our keynote speaker (at the last-minute), the fabulous Stacey Rourke, rocked my socks off with an inspirational speech to start our day. “Hoist your Colors!”

SR

After that, we all got ready to meet and greet with readers. Being the first event, I was pleasantly surprised at our ticket sales even before the event began. Then, almost all of those that bought tickets actually showed up. I was even more surprised by that. We had a goal. We wanted at least 150 people to come. It was pretty ambitious in my opinon but we found a way to make it happen.

Before the event kicked off we had just over 300 badges made up for those that would be attending – readers, exhibitors and assistants. Over 250 of those people joined us for fun on Saturday, only 75 were exhibitors. We hit our goal!

The signing went smooth. There was a good flow of people coming through the room. The venue did a great job of setting the tables spaciously enough where no one felt crowded. I rarely spent time at my table but it looked pretty…

me

After the signing was the party. Good food. Dancing. Drinks. FUN! I’m not posting any pics of that. Why? Because I have one on my phone and that’s about it. I was too busy hanging out with people I’d met and grown to love. I was relaxing with a beverage and making sure everyone was having a good time. And… as far as I could tell, they were.

Success. How do you measure the success of an event like this? Well, I’m thinking that since everyone is asking for another GLBB, it was a success. Readers came. Authors sold books. New friendships and bonds were made.

My heart is so full of love right now it’s crazy. I hoped and prayed that everything would go well and thankfully it did. We had an amazing group of exhibitors this year and hopefully you will see some of them again in 2017.

group    group 2

Thank you to all those that attended. I can’t wait to get together again and see what kind of magic happens. (Information coming soon!)

Who wants a FREE book?

Hey!

I’ve been super busy finalizing details for Great Lakes Book Bash that’s happening in only 16 days and haven’t been on social media much. I feel disconnected in a way. It’s amazing how much I miss people I’ve never met in person when I log off for a while.

Well, to apologize for my absence I’m going to give away some free ebooks. You choice of any of mine. All you have to do is comment below with which book you would like and, so you don’t have to post your email for the world to see, click here to send me your email address.

I hope this post brightens your day a little. Everyone loves a free book, right?