Wednesday, April 29, 2009


Pat Bertram, author or A Spark of Heavenly Fire and More Deaths Than One, is my guest Over Coffee today. Not only is Pat a wonderful storyteller, but also she is also very savvy when it comes to promotion and in particular, online promotion. What’s amazing to me is the fact Pat never had Internet until just about two years ago. She had to learn everything from scratch.

Pat is currently the administrator of several groups on Facebook and Goodreads as well as being the author of two popular blogs, Book Marketing Floozy, and Bertram’s Blog There is a wealth of information in the archives of Book Marketing Floozy regarding about every aspect of promotion. I would highly recommend purusing the archives.

Pat discusses the power of boldness when doing online promotion and how to use the social networks to promote both yourself and your books. She also shares some of her magical moments with us.

Writing a book was hard. Editing it was harder, and finding a publisher even harder. Waiting for it to be released after acceptance was murderous, and now promoting the book is . . .

Ha! Bet you thought I was going to say it was hardest of all -- most authors find promoting to be an arduous task, but not me. I enjoy it. What’s not to like? I get to meet wonderful people and have wonderful conversations. I get to write articles about anything I want and post them all over the internet. I get to . . . well, those two points are enough. Or should be. My books are still so new that they haven’t developed momentum, but I do believe that social networking is an incredible tool for book promotion.

Goethe wrote, “What you can do, or dream you can, begin it; boldness has genius, power and magic in it.” So, gather a bit of boldness and begin. Join sites like Facebook and Goodreads. Add friends. Take the time to get to know people by commenting on your new friends’ content, by sharing with links to some of your new friend's articles and content. And bit by bit the magic happens.

Let me share some of the magic that has happened to me.

I had the honor of hosting Michael Palmer’s very first guest appearance on a blog. How magical is that?

I had the privilege of meeting Bruce DeSilva, the writing coach for Associated Press, who introduced me (virtually speaking) to his wonderful wife, the poet Patricia Smith. Or is it his wife, the wonderful poet Patricia Smith? Either way, a remarkable experience.

I managed to impress award-winning ad exec Marshall Karp with the way I promoted his stop at Bertram’s Blog during his blog tour. Still don’t know how I did that. I just thought I was having fun.

Through one of my Facebook discussion groups, I met Rita Schiano, who is going to interview me live on her blogtalkradio show, Talk to Me…Conversations with Creative, Unconventional People, on June 16, 2009 at 8:30pm ET. Being a bit nervous, since I have not spoken before a group of people in decades, I posted articles asking for advice on both Gather and Facebook, and I received the most wonderful tips and suggestions. So if I screw up, it’s my own fault. (One bit of advice I got is to not talk longer than 2 minutes at a time, but it’s probably the one suggestion I won’t be able to follow. I do tend to rhapsodize about social networking. As if you haven’t figured out already.)

Am I bragging? Maybe, but the truth is, I am honored to have met these people and to have shared a moment of their lives. But it would never have happened if I hadn’t created a presence on Facebook and various other social networking sites.

The key to social networking is to be social. Spamming people with mass emails is not social. Nor is setting up a profile and expecting it to run itself. You need to add friends and take time to get to know them. Update your status frequently and include interesting links so your new friends seek you out. Reward those who post great content by leaving a comment or participating in their discussions. You need to take an interest in them. It’s up to you. You can treat book promotion as an arduous task, or you can be bold, give a bit of yourself, and perhaps create magic.

What are some of the magical moments you’ve had using social networks? What tips would you share with others?

Pat Bertram is a native of Colorado and a lifelong resident. When the traditional publishers stopped publishing her favorite type of book -- character and story driven novels that can't easily be slotted into a genre -- she decided to write her own.

Pat's books are available for order through the Second Wind Website ebook and paperback forms. Paperbacks are also available from Amazon and in Kindle format as well.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Ravenous Romance: The Importance Of Writing Environment

Erotica is a very popular genre today. Erotica runs the gamut in styles and sub genres. You can find fantasy and paranormal, Sci-fi, historical, gay/lesbian and contemporary settings for erotica.

I've only read a few, critique some for friends that write erotica. Of those I have read, I've seen some good stories--take out the sex and the stories are still well written and entertaining.

The point of erotica is sex and explicit sex in the storyline.

Today, Over Coffee is hosting some of the Ravenous Romance writers. They've titled this tour, The Onery Eleven.

Neve Black is the featured author of today's tour although you'll see a bit from all of the Eleven. Neve discusses why she enjoys writing erotica:

Writing is nothing new for me. I've has been writing since I can remember and opted for a degree in English Literature.

I mostly enjoys writing about subjects that scratch the under-belly of society; thus my love of erotic literature. I take pleasure in taking a voyeuristic approach to writing, because I think the most delicious story telling happens when no one thinks anyone else is looking.

My novel, Sex through the Zodiac was published with Ravenous Romance in January, 2009. You can also read my erotic work in the on-line magazine Oysters and Chocolate, and various erotic anthologies: Swing, Erotic Stories of Every Flavor, Ambrosia, Men in Shorts, and Sex and Shoes.

I'm currently working on writing a screenplay. I'm also writing short stories for various editors’ calls for submissions.

What’s your perfect environment for writing and do you have a process you follow each time you write?

Neve Black : Hmmm…picture this: a strapping, Spaniard bullfighter massages my neck, shoulders, upper back and arms, while a beautiful Italian wine maker prepares an exquisite meal in my kitchen. I’d write for an hour or so; until the delicious smells and those yummy, tantalizing hands simply got to be too much. I would simply have to take a writing break and eat and shake out my now noodle-like feeling muscles. I would then take them both upstairs to my bedroom, where together we’d enjoy a luxurious afternoon of heavenly physical pleasures.

Damn! There goes the alarm clock. It’s time to wake up. Haha. I prefer a very quiet work environment. I always write from a blank screen and formulate a story, which has been spawned from a conversation, an idea, or a simple thought. I do however carry a pad of paper and pen wherever I go, and my notes are words only I can read - so badly chicken scratched. This is probably why I tend to edit my stories no less than 763 times.

C. Margery Kempe I have no perfect environment. I write in my office, at my desk at home, on the couch, on the dining room table, in a notebook at a bar or café. My first Powerbook G4 was a revelation. I like to move around.

Jamaica Layne I have my own writing studio on the third floor of my house. I don’t think there's any "perfect" environment for writing, since what works for one writer might not work for another. I'm also a stay-at-home mom to a toddler so I can't be too choosy about my writing environment. Any quiet time I can steal away when baby is napping or late at night after everyone is asleep is the only writing time I get.

Inara LaVey We all dream of that perfect writer's retreat – quiet, peaceful, free of distractions. The reality is a constant stream of felines demanding attention. My process? Music for me and catnip for the kids.

Angela Cameron I don’t know if I have a perfect environment. I often write when I’m in my car, waiting to pick up my daughter at school. But my best writing is done at night. If I can lay down on my bed with music, a legal pad and pen, then I’m at my best.

Isabel Roman No process. It depends on time and deadlines. My perfect environment would be the beach, with a gorgeous view of the ocean, sun, sand, OK maybe a deck so I can type with all that and NOT get the laptop sandy. Actually, I have a family condo on the beach in Puerto Rico where I escape to when deadlines are looming.

Lisa Lane

I must have peace and quiet, and I absolutely must have a beverage within reach—preferably mocha, but invariably I drink a margarita for the final chapter of any given work.

Sephera Giron I have an office in my house and that’s where I do most of my writing. I don’t have any particular rituals. I also write on the fly on a laptop or pen and paper while waiting for my son at classes and rehearsals.

Savannah Chase For me the perfect environment is any place that I can sit and listen to music too and not be interrupted by anything else. I can write anywhere. All I need is a pen and paper and my mp3 player. I don’t follow any process to write since I write at all times of the day if I can.

EM Lynley The exact place isn't so much of an issue as needing to avoid distractions. Most of that is a question of self-discipline to shut the email down and just settle down and concentrate.

Elle Amery I have to dream the story before I write it. Usually I snuggle up on the couch with my cat and drift in and out of the character’s story. Once I have the scene almost fully written in my head, I sit on the couch with my laptop, chocolate, and absolute silence and attack the keyboard! Oh, and as I discovered while writing Tally’s Gift, I absolutely need a clean house. My bunny made a mess with her bedding and I couldn’t stop staring at the hay flakes on the floor.


From the novel, Sex Through The Zodiac

“…It wasn’t as if I had to start my New Year’s resolution plan that very moment, but opportunity was knocking at my door, or the door of my cervix, three times and I knew I had to strike while the planets were hot. I mentally assessed the situation of all three men; taking into account their zodiac signs and decided these three signs probably wouldn’t go for a ménage a quattro. I would just have to have one on one sex with each of them. Oh darn.

I knew I had to move quickly and seize the moment. I knew conservative Capricorn Eric would never go for meeting me under the table for an oral conference, or Ben the Cancer probably wouldn’t appreciate that approach either, because of his romantic nature. I could, however, convince Scott, the cavalier Aries to meet me in the bathroom for a quickie.

I stood up and all six pairs of eyes watched me; they were a captive audience. I walked over to Scott and whispered in his ear to meet me in the bathroom. He nodded attentively and I felt the fiery pulse of heat running through his veins. He felt like he’d won. He stood up from his chair; said his goodbyes and headed toward the bathrooms. I knew I’d soon benefit from his hardened cock, fed by his ego.

Next, I moved toward Eric, careful not to display too much public attention, as I bent forward and whispered how much I’d like to meet him sometime this week for a follow-up drink and maybe a chat about my stock portfolio. I slipped him my business card. He beamed with enthusiasm; he scooted his chair back, stood up and called it a night. I had a feeling that once he and I were locked behind closed doors, that social climbing goat will be climbing Orgasm Mountain with me.

Lastly, I sat next to Ben. Gently touching his large hands with mine, I opened his palms, and scribbled my cell number in the middle of his left palm. I told him I thought sharing a romantic candlelight dinner with a bottle of wine while engaging in conversation was in our near future. He blushed in embarrassment, but smiled because he confessed that’s exactly what he was thinking. “I know.” I thought to myself and smiled into his dreamy, sensitive and ready to please me eyes….”


Remember to leave a comment; it automatically enters you to win. Win a free mini zodiac reading from Roxanne, Sex through the Zodiac’s sexy heroine. We’ll also be giving away three $5.00 gift certificates for Ravenous on three random stops. You won’t know which ones until the tour is over, so visit as many as you can! And if you leave a comment on every stop in the RR Ornery Eleven BBT, you’re eligible to win a $25 gift certificate from Ravenous Romance!

Thanks so much for stopping by and thank you, Sia, for hosting us!

Please visit Bryn Greenwood’s blog
this Wednesday for another question of the day and our featured author C. Margery Kempe!