Authors' Chat

Oh, The Characters We Love To Hate!

Oh, the characters we love to hate! Writing a horrible antagonist is great fun for an author. In my Circle of Nine series the main antagonist is an older woman named Adele. In fact, she is the grandmother of the protagonist’s boyfriend and that makes things a little tricky! Although she is older in the main storyline, we do get to see her within the series at many ages beginning at age eighteen. Adele is both conniving and jealous. In fact, jealousy and perceived slights are her main motivations throughout the series. These feelings are mainly directed toward the women in the Circle of Nine who serve as the guardians of the ancient stone circles of Ireland and the old ways of their tribe, the Tuatha de Danann. Adele has always coveted a spot in the Circle and believes that she (as the more devoted to the old pagan ways and spells) ought to have inherited the position that went to her cousin. The Circle has very firmly established lines of inheritance from one eldest daughter to another . . . and since Adele’s mother was NOT the eldest daughter, Adele has spent her life aching (and plotting) for something…

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One Reader’s Voice Out Loud with Peter

Our readers are the foundation of what makes indieBRAG unique.  They not only select the books to become the next B.R.A.G. Medallion Honoree but give feedback to our authors. This feedback is important not only to the authors but to the reader as well. Readers carry a lot of weight in what we regard as quality in self-publishing. Not only that but how readers see author’s platforms and performance on social media. Today Peter shares with us a little about his reading habits, reviewing books, how he finds books, book covers, and much more. Thank you, Peter for sharing with us today. First please tell us about your reading interest.  indieBRAG:    Thank you for joining us for this reader's event. Thank you for the opportunity to participate in your survey. indieBRAG: How do you choose a book to read? On looking through the list of BRAG Medallion applications, I try to identify something that I hope will be interesting and well-written. I then check it out on Amazon, and if it still looks interesting I request it. If it doesn’t look interesting, I repeat the process until something better appears. I have sometimes been right through the list this…

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WHO is an indieBRAG reader? You might reply…duh, they are people who read for indieBRAG!

WHO is an indieBRAG reader?  You might reply…duh, they are people who read for indieBRAG. RIGHT! But to be more precise, they are readers who love books--the same people who are buying your books, authors, so make sure you know them. Many indieBRAG readers are authors themselves who say reading the “good” and the “bad” has immensely helped them with their own writing.  Many also have a level of education and experience in the literary field that might impress you, while many do not--but all love reading and are happy to be taking part in the search for good books that deserve attention.  They know what they like and what they expect from a book and, lest you think otherwise, they are not undemanding judges.  It is their job to be discerning and thoughtful, a role I am proud to say they take very seriously.   After all, who better to tell other readers if a book deserves their time and money? We often hear from authors whose books were not chosen to receive a B.R.A.G Medallion (roughly 75% of the books we consider fall into this category). They feel they did everything right: punctuation, grammar, formatting and even professional content…

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“Becoming Malka” – Argentinian matzah balls!

Foodie Lit: A genre of novel and memoirs filled with food stories and recipes Each month, I’ll share the magic of a good Foodie Lit read and one of its recipes.  Cooking and recipes in novels or memoirs take us into the mind of the character or narrator and brings us into the book’s kitchen to see, smell and share the lives within. Here’s to cooking and reading! With Love, The Argentina Family; Becoming Malka Mirta Ines Trupp Mirta Innes Trupp searches for family history and her identity in her memoir, With Love, The Argentina Family and in her historical fiction, Becoming Malka, works that she describes as the story of a Russian, Argentinian, American and Jewish immigrant. Teachers couldn’t pronounce her name and students couldn’t figure out what group she belonged to. “Here at home, I struggled to find myself within the American tapestry. I was acutely aware of how different we seemed to be from others. Not only were we immigrants, but we didn’t quite fit the mold. … I couldn’t find my niche.” Mirta’s journey becomes literary when she writes With Love, The Argentina Family.  When her father begins working for Pan Am, Mirta frequently travels back and forth between the…

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Throwing Donuts from Behind a Wall – Marketing your Indie Book Online

How to market your book? Well, the hard part is writing it. After that it’s easy; you just stick it on Amazon and sit back and count the money as it rolls in. Oh wait, I wasn’t asked to write a piece of fiction… So, ignore that first sentence. Except, naively, that is pretty much the way I approached things in the beginning. After all, how can you know, when you’ve just published a book, what to do next? I don’t have a marketing or statistics degree. I’m not naturally ‘pushy’ (and I don’t mean that word pejoratively.) In common with many authors, I suspect, I am an introvert. I communicate by writing, be it books, articles, or messages on Facebook. Face to face, I could no more brazenly ask someone to buy my book than I could gracefully roller-skate backwards whilst wrestling an irate baboon. So this is not a piece about book fairs, organising talks or book signings. I actually live such a long way away from anywhere that few would be worth my while, financially, or logistically. Pavement pounding is not an option for me. But it is possible to market ‘remotely’, and writers, unlike singers or…

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The Art Of Book Marketing with Anna Castle

We would like to welcome B.R.A.G. Medallion Honoree Anna Castle today to talk with us about her book marketing.  Anna, when partnering up with other authors for cross promotions, what is the outcome of this and is this something you recommend doing on an ongoing basis? I haven’t done this, apart from a series of Christmas blog posts. That was fun, but I don’t think it had any effect on my sales. Still, it’s well to remember that publicity means getting your name out there, while marketing consists of specific efforts to boost sales. Or that’s how I’ve learned these lessons. What are some ways that were successful in marketing your book? The best results I’ve had in terms of sales & downloads have come from using newsletter ad services to promote a discount. I’m not big enough for BookBub, but I’ve had good results from FussyLibrarian and Booksends. This month I’m trying BookAdrenaline, which is strictly mysteries and thrillers and only $8! These services have large numbers of subscribers -- usually in the tens of thousands -- who sign up because they want selected bargains. These are often voracious readers, like I used to be before I started reading…

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“Antagonists Series” with Lucinda Brant

       indieBRAG is pleased to welcome LUCINDA BRANT the  New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of Georgian historical romances & mysteries Would you please take your most notorious Antagonist and answer the questions below about him or her?  This will be a lot of fun and give readers a sense of your character development of different types of personalities. As you know, readers love to read about Antagonist too! Antagonists name. Diana St. John. The villainess in my novel Salt Bride: A Georgian Historical Romance What are two emotional traits your antagonist has? Diana has few if any positive emotional traits. And those she does possess, such as self-determination and single-mindedness, she uses in an evil way. Does your antagonist feel victimized? How so? Of course. Like all truly evil people, she has one perspective, her own. Anyone or anything that is counter to her point of view must be against her. She desperately wants to be Countess of Salt Hendon. She thinks she is in love with the Earl, and so when he marries another, she believes she is the injured party. Nor does she blame him. It is all the fault of his bride, Jane.…

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Moving Into Spring with Nicole Evelina

What are your writing goals for spring? I am writing my first non-fiction book this spring. It’s about the evolution of the character of Guinevere over the course of Arthurian legend, beginning with the first references to her in the Celtic triads and going all the way through my own books and others published in the last year or two. There are a few theses and dissertations that trace her changing nature from their origins through works written in the early 1990s, but they are hard to find, sometimes highly academic and don’t cover more recent history. I’m hoping my book makes the information accessible to the average reader and I’m excited to cover books that have come out in the last 20 years. I’m hoping for a summer release on that book. After that, I am going to do some research for Mistress of Legend, the final book in the Guinevere’s Tale trilogy. I have a draft written, but it’s getting a major re-write. That likely will take me into summer at least. My goal is to publish it by the end of the year. Do you Pinterest? What is your favorite board? OMG! I LOVE Pinterest! I’m actually…

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Inspiration waits for no one

Genius is one percent inspiration, ninety-nine percent perspiration. -- Thomas Edison I wake up groggy and roll to my side. It's 3 a.m. Then, something hits me. It's an idea, a glorious nugget of a story that I just have to get down--somewhere--before it is gone forever. I reach over and snatch my phone. Frantically, I scroll to my notes app and begin feverishly pecking away at the small electronic keyboard until the idea is down in a string of misspellings and typos that only I can understand. I roll back over and slip back into my dreams; hopefully the next will be as fruitful as the last. This is a common occurrence for me. Most of the ideas for my books rush into my consciousness in the wee hours of the night. I don't know why. Perhaps it is because my brain is uncluttered from the events of the day, filtered out through rest and deep sleep. I always make sure to have my phone at arm's length because of this. In fact, the idea behind Uncanny Valley, a trilogy I am in the middle for writing, came to me in such a half-roused state. It was a simple…

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Moving Into Spring with Elaine Russell

We’d like to welcome Award Winning Author Elaine Russell today. Elaine is the author of the adult novel Across the Mekong River and five other books for young adult and children. Three is her book have been awarded the B.R.A.G. Medallion.  What are your writing goals for spring? This has been a very long, cold and wet winter. We are a bit spoiled in Northern California as normally there are brief reprieves of sunny days and warmer temperatures. Not this season. After five years of drought the rain is desperately needed, but it makes bundling up for a walk or bike ride far from appealing. On the bright side, it has forced me to settle in and work on my newest adult novel. It is a treat to have an uninterrupted day of writing, snuggled up on the sofa, listening to the patter of the rain. My goal is to finish this book, which I started two years ago, by the end of April. I completed a first draft back in September and hired a great editor, Jennifer Pooley, to help me think through the story and characters. Armed with her helpful suggestions, I slaved all winter on revisions. This…

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