Category Archives: Blogs

May Book Blogger Hop

Hey, I’m a bit late for last week’s Book Blogger Hop but here’s my answer to:

What book character do you think you are most like and why?

Like Harriet (Hetty) Deveraux, from Sarah Maine’s House Between Tides, I have ancestry from a small island. In my case my great grandmother was Harriet Renier who was born on the island of Alderney.

Hetty is drawn to her ancestral home, as I have always been to Alderney. I now live in Fife where there are so many similarities between here and The Channel Islands, especially to Alderney. The pace of life, sense of community, the seascapes and landscape too. (although not so many forts, castles abound!)

Hetty is inspired and interested in history, as I am. If there is a mystery she wants to discover the truth. I love to research and ‘dig’ into the past, and so Libby from Sarah Maine’s Women of the Dunes also resonates with me.

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What character in a novel you’ve read recently are you most like?

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Filed under Alderney, Blogs, Book reading, Fife

What do successful indie authors say about achieving success?

During the month of August I interviewed five successful Indie authors on this blog. You can click on them down the sidebar.

Here is a summary of of their advice to writer’s and similarities about their approach:

BE DILIGENT

~ Treat Writing Like work

It was clear from all of the authors interviewed that they took all aspects of writing novels, marketing and the publishing world seriously. Although many of us may not aspire to the dizzy heights of employing staff like Adam Croft ~ most of us commission people to do the cover art, formatting and editing. We aim for a professional product our readers expect of us.

I’ll let you into a little secret here. I met Adam when he was promoting his first ever crime novel, giving it away free on Amazon through Smashwords ~ and so there’s nothing wrong with aspirations of grandeur! (and possibilities)

Writing seriously IS HARD WORK!

BE CONSISTENT

~ Build your audience by expectation

Although many authors dabble in different genre and some are successful doing that, it is the consistency of publishing in a certain genre, an awareness of your audience and regular releases of books in a series that appears to build success. It may take time, but patience is then rewarded.

(If you click on the links below they will take you to the author pages on Amazon)

I know if I buy an Anne Allen book that it will be some kind of mystery, reflect a period in history and be set on the island of Guernsey, usually in at least two time periods.

Tony Riches writes historical fiction, researching characters in history who are less well known and it is obvious from his books that he has explored the places and well as also the lives of the people.

Margaret Skea is also a  competent historical fiction writer, often with some mystery adding a different dimension.

Adam Croft writes crime. His plots are quirky and increasingly complex, but all of his books are ‘a good read.’

Maggie Anderson writes Regency Romance which has a great following and are easy to identify.

Skimming over their author pages gives a clear picture of what to expect if buying their books.

BE CREATIVE AND AHEAD OF THE GAME

Adam Croft was into Audio Books well before they ‘took off.’ Margaret Skea has taken the opportunity during lock down of launching her books on audio too. With audio increasingly popular and profitable, why are more of us not taking up this opportunity? (note to self!) At first Audio books were mainly in the realms of libraries but not anymore.

Many of us are glad we ignored the doomsayers about e books and have always diversified into both paperback and e book. This is vital in today’s odd world.

BY GIVING YOU RECEIVE ~ IN MARKETING

I am a great believer in this message. No author is an island unto themselves. (a Diana mis-quote!)

Avenues for marketing are limited these days for those of us who were used to speaking to an audience, having stalls at craft fairs and book signing. There’s a plethora of different ways though, to promote your books on line. Margaret Skea, author of Historical Fiction, gives the good advice that it is essential to ‘give as much or more than you take’ when marketing on Social Media.

Help other authors out and they are more willing to support you.

I certainly feel the same. Author Tony Riches is always promoting other people’s work and because I love his books I trust his choice of books he promotes. It’s a win win situation. He has also given me tips along the way and pointed me in the direction of marketing opportunities, such as The Coffee Book Club Tour.

Maggi Anderson mentions the importance of a newsletter ~ so important and often overlooked.

… and finally just get writing!

If you would like to do a guest blog between now and Christmas on this blog then please read:

Throw a Dice for Memories of a Character in your novel

Then leave your contact details as a comment on my blog or email diana@dianamaryjackson.co.uk

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Filed under Blogs, Guest author, Marketing your novel, Publishing your novel, Social Media Networking, Writing

Maggi Andersen ~ 4th of my Summer Special Successful Indie Authors

I’m so happy to welcome author Maggie Andersen to share her writing journey with us. She lives way over in Australia which just goes to prove that blogging brings the world together. This series of posts are aimed to appeal to writers, fans and potential readers alike. Maggi is a successful Indie Author of Regency Romance and is published through a relatively small but growing, by the look of the website, Independent Press with a niche market. 

Hello Maggi thank you for joining us today!

Do you mind me asking; was the success in your writing career a gradual process or very sudden?

Thanks for inviting me to your blog to talk about my books, Diana.

I wasn’t one of those authors who gained success with their first book. Most of us need to learn the craft, develop our writing voice, and discover what genre suits us best.  My first novel was a murder mystery I wrote for my master’s degree. It looked promising for a while, Random House was interested, but they were cutting back and not taking on new crime authors. Several years followed while I worked on that novel to improve it. I’m not sorry for those years before I published a book, because I read heaps of helpful books on writing, and developed my style. Then I began writing Regencies, because I loved the era, having read my mother’s library of Georgette Heyer’s wonderful novels. A publisher took my first effort and it sold well and set me on a path of writing romance. I love to write that HEA, so the genre suits me. I like to take my readers on a spine-tingling journey, where the hero and heroine will be together at the end.

Are you single minded in your writing? Do you treat it as your main work and plan your day accordingly, or write when the mood takes you?

I can’t really wait for the mood to strike. I have deadlines to meet, and write or work on promotion every day between 8.00am and 5.00pm, with a bit of time off for exercise or housework.

We would call your main genre Historical Romance inspired by Jane Austen? How would you describe your writing style to potential readers?

I adore Jane Austen’s novels, who doesn’t love P & P? But Georgette Heyer’s Regencies influenced me to a greater extent, because Heyer sends her heroines on an adventure, and that appeals to me. As to my style, I guess I would call it economical. I don’t write extra-long books. And they’re fast paced. I love to add a touch of humor along with the suspense.

Can you give fellow writers any marketing tips?

I’m not great at marketing, mainly because I just don’t like to take the time away from writing. I use Twitter, FB, LinkedIn and Pinterest. Some paid advertising. I should do more, but the writing always takes precedence. I have a newsletter where I announce new releases and offer an occasional freebie. Readers can sign up on my website: www.maggiandersenauthor.com

Have you one annoying habit you can share with us?

I’m sure I have many. I asked my husband, but he declined to answer, lol. I’m forced to admit that I nag a bit, I’m tidy and like things done a certain way, and DH isn’t so fussed. I’ve lost interest in cooking now the children have left home, so DH cooks now that he’s retired from the law. He’s good too.

What pastimes keep your feet on the ground, or maybe not, when you aren’t writing?

We are in lock down here because of the virus, at the time of writing this. So, our choices are limited. I prefer swimming, but the pool is closed right now. I power walk around our garden, feed the birds, we have some pets among them, and a possum. I read romantic suspense novels, watch Netflix and movies during the evening.

Was there a single moment in your writing life when you thought ‘YES, THIS IS IT’? Can you describe that moment for us?

When I made the USA Today bestselling author list and SEDUCED BY THE PIRATE was a finalist in the RONE award. Quite a thrill.

We’d love to hear your latest news:

I’m writing a Christmas short story NEVER KEEP A SECRET AT CHRISTMAS featuring Lady Alice Dountry from NEVER DOUBT A DUKE which will be part of my publisher, Dragonblade’s 2020 collection of Christmas stories, based on Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. I am also working on the second book in the Once a Wallflower series, a gritty romantic suspense: INTRODUCING MISS JOANNA, and after that the second book in The Never Series, NEVER DANCE WITH A MARQUESS.

And finally Maggi, do you see yourself writing in five years time and have you ever been tempted to write in a different genre to surprise your readers?

From time to time I do.  My WWI novel is available for pre-order: THE HEIR’S PROPOSAL features wealthy Edwardians like those from Downton Abbey. Some years ago, I published a young adult novel, WAVING AT THE MOON, and co-wrote a contemporary crime novel, TWINED, with my son, a journalist, which was a finalist in the Emerald Pro Award. But most of my books are set in the Georgian, Regency, and Victorian worlds.

Thanks so much for sharing this with us Maggi!

Here are a plethora of links where you can get in touch, follow or read more about her books:

maggicoleman@bigpond.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/maggiandersenauthor/

Twitter: @maggiandersen

Website: www.maggiandersenauthor.com

Blog: https://maggiandersen.blogspot.com/

Amazon Author page: https://tinyurl.com/y5f4xm4u

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com.au/maggiandersen/

 

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