Remember that scene in the Wizard of Oz, when the Flying Monkeys have strewn the Scarecrow’s straw all over Oz, and he cries, “They took my arm and put it over there, and ripped off my leg and threw it over there!” The ever-wise, ever-dry Tin Man replies, “Well, that’s you all over!”
The Tin Man’s words have been playing in my head frequently as I take a step back and look at my publishing schedule during the coming months. I took my genre and threw it over there! Then ripped out my manuscript and threw it over there! That’s me all over, demolishing the rule that says “pick a genre and stay with it.” Also mocking the “too many releases in a short period of time will saturate the market” opinion. And clearly ignoring the advice that says branding is king. Or, in my case, queen.
Instead, it’s just me all over, my brand scattered about, my books in different places on the shelves, my release schedule as packed as the scarecrow’s chest full of straw after his buddies put him back together. In the next few months to a year, I’m launching a new series, trying different publishing formats, hopping into additional genres, introducing new characters, participating in multi-author projects, celebrating a reissue, working with several publishers, and basically holding my breath hoping that it somehow all comes together to make readers (old and new) happy.
I don’t normally use this space for straight promo (well, sometimes) but I’ve had a lot of email in the past few months asking what’s next, as it seems like eons since I’ve had a book released. (Six months = an eon in this business.) I’ve also had a lot of email asking me if Gabriel Rossi will star in his own Guardian Angelino book. Sigh. Not in the near future, but I doubt I could live my whole life and not write that man as a hero. Be patient, Gabe fans, he shall get what he deserves and it will be blistering hot and ridiculously fun and there will be a lot of four letter words because that’s how he rolls.
In the meantime, look what’s coming up!
Right This Minute:
Edge of Sight for $1.99. That’s right…the very first Guardian Angelino book is available in any eformat for the entire month of November for just $1.99. Thank you, Grand Central Publishing! My fabulous editor chose to showcase the book with this special promotion, celebrating all veterans this month and shining a spotlight on that scarred and sexy Army Ranger, Zach Angelino. So, if you’re thinking about trying this series (currently at three books), hop on over to Amazon or BN.com or your favorite retailer and get this RITA-nominated romantic suspense for only two bucks! Su-weet.
While you’re thinking about that, try the FREE prequel, Taken To The Edge, to get a taste of Zach and Sam. Zach, I gotta say, is pretty delish.
SEAL of My Dreams – I blogged about this anthology two weeks ago, but it never hurts to see that cover again, right? The buzz on this book is so wonderful and positive! I am absolutely thrilled to be part of this amazing project. My story is “Whirlwind” and it’s one of eighteen featuring the always hot-in-camos Navy SEALs. All proceeds go to the Veteran’s Research Corporation, so, really, get this book and help a great cause.
Space In His Heart – I’m so insanely excited about this one, I can’t tell you. I’ll devote a blog to it in December, but I just want to alert readers that my very first manuscript is finally going to be published and I could not love this story more. This is a full-length, stand-alone romantic suspense that was originally going to be published by Pocket. However, while we were in the early stages of editing, the space shuttle Columbia exploded on re-entry — and, in one of those weird coincidences where life imitates fiction, that was the suspense element of the story. Living on the Space Coast and surrounded by friends and neighbors who work for NASA, the tragedy hit home. I decided to pull the manuscript from consideration and have waited nearly a decade until the time was right to release. I’m happy to say, that time is now. And, yes, I’m dipping my toes into the swirling waters of self-publishing, releasing this one on my own, but with a small team behind me that includes a professional editor, proofreader, formatting expert, and, obviously, art director.
Space In His Heart is “the astronaut book” some of you may recall me mentioning. I love this book, I love these characters, and I love this story of the PR woman who has chosen a reluctant astronaut to represent NASA and make America fall in love with space again. Of course, she’s the one who falls in love…and I hope readers do, too. I don’t have an exact release date yet, as the book is in production, but expect a specially priced e-version (and yes, there will be a print version, too) around November 30. And I have cool trading cards, too!
Kiss Me, I’m Irish is my first official “re-issue” from Harlequin, a collection of three smokin’ hot Irish heroes from Jill Shalvis, Maureen Child, and me. My story is The Sins Of His Past, originally published a few years ago as a Silhouette Desire. The only thing I didn’t love about this book was the original cover (affectionately known in my family as The Sands Of His Past and looking at this thumbnail you can see why). Now Deuce Monroe gets a cover worthy of him! Sins is a reunion romance set in Cape Cod, featuring a fight for ownership of an Irish pub and a sinfully smoldering hawt baseball playing hero.
Barefoot In The Sand is the first in The Barefoot Bay Series, my contemporary romances from Grand Central/Forever Publishing. I’m on pins and needles with the launch of a new series, hoping readers find it emotional, funny, and very romantic. Barefoot Bay is on the northern end of Mimosa Key, a fictional island off the Gulf Coast of Florida. When the story opens, a hurricane (featured front and center in “Whirlwind,” the short story in SEAL of My Dreams) has wiped away Lacey Armstrong’s fifty year old beachfront house, leaving her with nothing but glorious property and big dreams. Enter architect Clay Walker — younger, hotter, and much sexier than the architect Lacey thought she’d hired. Clay’s plans are bold and wild…and they include a gorgeous new resort and an unexpected romance.
Don’t You Wish is my Young Adult hardcover debut, inspired by a question my daughter asked me, written in a frenzy of creative joy, and (woo hoo!) optioned for feature film. This is the story of plain and unpopular Annie Nutter who gets zapped to a parallel universe and wakes up as Ayla Monroe, gorgeous, rich, popular and cool. The dream life is totally sick at first, but it doesn’t take Annie long to learn the price for perfection is very high. Will she pay the fee for fabulosity or head home to mediocrity? The choice isn’t as simple as you’d think.
So, that’s me all over. (Plus a Bullet Catcher short story called Diamond Drop in an anthology from the Thriller Writers of America — more on that closer to the Summer 2012 release date.) It’s kind of exhausting just listing all these books…imagine what it was like to write them.
So, what do you think? Good idea to scatter my brand and break out of the box…or am I crazy? Anything in particular you’re looking forward to in the coming months — these books or something else? (Ahem, Lothaire, Kresley Cole fans!) Leave a comment to win! I’m giving away $15 gift card to the online retailer of your choice! You can buy one of mine…or maybe pick up The Wizard of Oz and take a stroll down the yellow brick road.