Book lovin’

So look what came in the mail! If you look closely, you’ll see my demon-red eyes beautifully match the color of the font in DARKNESS UNDONE.

Having the fourth book of the Marked Souls in hand is almost surreal. I wonder if New York Times bestselling multipublished authors ever get tired of popping open that box of new books? I bet not. Unless they are ebook authors, in which case the fun is popping open a new email with the fully-formatted pdf/mobi/epub/etc.

And speaking of electronic presents, look what a Twitter link brought me:

“…I fell in love. With the characters, with the series, with the very concept. It left me with a need to read.. and read.. and read some more. Of course I have the next two books, Forged in Shadows and Vowed in Shadows already on my kindle and I am ready to go!”

You can read the rest of Tea and Book’s spectacular review of SEDUCED BY SHADOWS, Marked Souls 1, here. It was kind of beautiful to have the new book in hand while the first book is out finding new readers.

This was a good day to be a writer!

Sticks and stones

(Crossposted from Silk And Shadows
This week: Good and bad reviews)

My XY, a musician, is a champion heckler.  His theory is that since the audience shows up with money in one hand, they’re allowed — even obliged — to threateningly heft a proverbial rotten tomato in the other hand.  Comic Auggie Smith out of Portland, Oregon, made an equally painful observation about working artists when he said (I’m paraphrasing here) “It’s not a healthy thing that I go out every night seeking the approval of strangers.”

Yeowch.  Don’t we get any credit for sharing?  At least writers, unlike comics and musicians, perform at a polite (or should I say safe?) distance.   Thanks to the dubious miracle of Google Alerts, however, you can be instantly informed whenever anyone says anything about you.  It’s the high-tech version of “your ears must be burning.”  No, just my inbox and my ulcer.

Google Alerts is how I received the first — and so far only — review of my debut novel.  For maximum effect, do note that my book doesn’t come out until October and no one has received any advanced copies yet.  The review was this:



Yeah, that was it.  Meh.  That faintly — but only faintly — damning analysis of my pweshus work was based on the Publishers Weekly one-sentence recap of recent transactions in bookworld.  Sob.

The urge to reach out and connect is intrinsic to humanity, I think, and part of the secret to our survival.  To be rebuffed, ignored or reviled is to be denied our very existence, to be banished from the tribe, where we will surely starve.

Hmm, that comes off a touch melodramatic, not to mention self-pitying.  So I should also share the best review I’ve ever received for a work-in-progress:

More, more, we want more!

Isn’t that sweet?  It was from my mom.  Tragically, moms are not to be trusted as book reviewers.  Although I love the idea of an all-mom review site.  They could do their rating system in mom-code:

Hotness scale:
Sexy = “I suppose I could let my of-age daughter read this.”
Smokin’ = “No way am I letting my mother read this!”
Erotica = “Really?”

Great book = “I’ll call my book club about this one!”
Okay book = “I’ll pass this one to my sewing circle.”
Terrible book = “Well, at least you tried. I’m sending you cookies.”

There could also be a mom-based music review site:

Great album = “Look, I brought my own custom earplugs!”
Okay album = “Iron Butterfly had a drum solo almost that long.”
Terrible album = “You could play at weddings! Have a cookie.”

Ah well, cookies are better than rotten tomatoes.  What’s your comfort/celebration food?