Switching Blogs…

Hello everyone!

I am going to be switching blogs.  I will let you know as soon as the other one is up and running!

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Burdened: The Maya Price Story Release Date

I use Grammarly’s plagiarism checker because imitation isn’t always the sincerest form of flattery…

I know that many of you have been waiting for me to FINALLY decide when I’m going to publish Burdened: The Maya Price Story.

And, yes, it has been quite some time since I posted on my blog.

Let me explain.

I have recently changed careers from that of a high school Spanish teacher to a high school librarian.  (Still a high school, but a different job.  Trust me).  And I love it.  I love, love, LOVE being a librarian.  Yet, when you love a job that much, you put quite a bit of time into it and this is an adjustment.  For this reason, I have had to change my schedule around, and rework my life a little bit, which means my writing has been sporadic.

Now, as I approach the end of my rough draft of Burdened, I have finally come up with a timeline for the release.  I’ve done this once before, so I know how long it takes to…

1.) Give the book to my beta readers and get their feedback.

2.) Make my corrections/ rewrite

3.) Pass the draft to my editor and have her take a pass at it.

4.) Have the cover designed and the book formatted.

-And-

5.) Publish the book.

In all honesty, I probably will not be able to release Burdened until (get ready) August 2014. 

Ok, ok, simmer down now.   I know some of you are shaking your fists at the computer, but please, please, PLEASE remind yourself that you do not want me to put out a crappy product.

Also, please don’t beat me up.

That being said,  I will release a few more short stories about the secondary characters between now and then.  If you haven’t read it already, the Luz Rodriguez story is for sale on Amazon.  The next short story I release will be from Maya Price’s mother’s (Linda Price) perspective.  And, I will release a few excerpts from Burdened between now and then.

I want to apologize to all my readers for not being able to release Burdened sooner.  I love you guys and I hope you’ll stick with me!

Thank you for all your support!

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What I Learned from a Blog Tour

For those of you who don’t know what a book blog tour is, let me explain. This is especially important for all of my friends who are starting out as bloggers or self-published writers. A blog tour happens when different book bloggers feature a newly released book or a cover reveal of an upcoming book on their respective blogs.  Each blog featuring the book is considered a “tour stop” and can be used to publicize the book.

If you decide to take your book on a blog tour I suggest that you find a service that will put together a tour for you. You can try to do this on your own, but I don’t recommend it. Those who organize book tours typically have connections with bloggers and a background in marketing, public relations, publishing, or a related field.  Yes, I may be able to talk your ear off about the works of Miguel de Unamuno, but my degree in Spanish Literature does not a tour organizer make. Therefore, I used Xpresso Book Tours and found Giselle, the owner, to be extremely professional and organized.  I highly recommend her services.

So, the tour organizer will then post a blurb from your book, a picture of the cover, a fabulous photo of you, and a sign up list for the tour.  Bloggers can sign up to host your book and post either a review, a guest post, an excerpt, or an interview.  The book will be hosted on a different blog every day for a certain amount of time.  I chose a two week tour for Identified, so the book was on a different blog every day for two weeks (not including weekends).  You can see the tour schedule for Identified here and browse some of the reviews and guest posts.

Now that the Identified tour is over, I have learned a few things about my book, bloggers, and publicity. I would like to share a few of these lessons with you so that if you embark on your own blog tour you don’t burst into tears in a Wal-Mart or take your anger out on your child’s play kitchen.  (Not that I did that…)

First of all, bloggers come in all…well, I don’t want to say shapes and sizes because that’s weird.  But, they are a diverse group.  Not all of them are the nerdtastic teenagers you love to love.  Some of them are stay-at-home moms.  Some of them are medical professionals (i.e. doctors) who blog on the side. And yes, some of them are teenagers that spent their elementary and middle school years convincing their peers that they were Hermione Granger.

That being said, you must, MUST realize that not everyone is going to like your book.   And, even if they do like your book, they may not like all aspects of your book.  One blogger loved the cover of  Identified and another said that it made her almost not read the book.  Some found the first part boring, while others loved the detail.  A few of the bloggers really liked Maya, and listed her as their favorite character, while others absolutely hated her.   In fact, one added the book to her “Wanted to Kill MC” shelf on Goodreads.  Now, I know that me telling you this isn’t exactly the best publicity for Identified, but everyone is allowed his or her opinion.  And while Identified is (for the most part) enjoying good reviews, some people just don’t like it. This will always be the case, with everything everyone does anywhere. If you’re going to write a book, and take it on a book blog tour, realize that not everyone is going to give it five stars.

(Disclaimer: If you use Xpresso Reads Book Tours, bloggers are asked not to post a review if they gave the book less than three stars.  Xpresso Reads asks bloggers to wait until the tour is over.  I like this, because I’m trying to  publicize my book and get people to read itYou will still know if someone did not like it, but no one else will.  Well, at least not at the time of the book tour.)

Also, realize that publishing and marketing a book takes time.  Not everyone has an Amanda Hocking story.  (For those of you who don’t know who she is, click on the link.  Long story short, she was a millionaire before the age of 30 because of her self-published Tyrelle trilogy.)  While a blog tour definitely gets the word out about your book, it takes time for those bloggers to tell their friends, and for those friends to tell their friends, and so on and forth.  A blog tour is a wonderful start (and I heart you, Giselle!), but will by no means make you a millionaire.  Don’t quit your day job just yet.   (Although if I do become a millionaire, Giselle is getting some of the credit for that.)

Speaking of money, you need to be willing to spend some dinero on a blog tour. Again, don’t quit your day job.  I feel that the tour services I used were reasonably priced, but there is always more to spend money on. (Ok, Grammar Nazis, I did agonize over not ending that sentence with a preposition. Just leave it alone!)  With the Identified blog tour, I offered a giveaway of a paperback for the entire tour and a giveaway of a an  ebook per blog.  Yes, I have to pay for these books.  Amazon and CreateSpace don’t just give them to me for free.  I know that it  doesn’t seem like a lot of money to sponsor a giveaway, but you will at least spend some.  If you decide not to do a giveaway, good luck.  Unless you are already a celebrity, People. Don’t. Know. You.  (Trying to emphasize the point.)  For example, most are not going to look at my book and say, “Ooooh! Faith Rice-Mills!  I love her! I’ll read anything that she writes!”  They may say, “Who is this weirdo with the hyphen in the middle of her last name?”  On the other hand, if someone sees that I’m giving away a FREE book, they may take a look at it.  Then, they may even say, “Hey! I haven’t read anything about interdimensional travel in a while. I think I’ll enter this giveaway.”  As a result, they will read the book and (I hope) tell their friends, who will tell their friends…..

So, if you’ve recently started up a blog, and are thinking about participating in a book blog tour, I definitely recommend it.  For one thing, all of the bloggers that enjoyed Identified are going to get a signed ARC  of Burdened from me. And, if you’ve recently self-published, you should, without a doubt, take your book on a blog tour.  You may have written the next Harry Potter , but no one will know if you don’t get the word out there.

In my humble opinion, a book blog tour is a wonderful and worthwhile experience.  Even you cry at every Kelley Clarkson song,  and a negative review would possibly ruin your 2013, you should do this.  Even if you’re not that rolling in dollar bills (hello, teacher salary right here!), you should do this.

It’s possible no one will know about your masterpiece (whether it be a blog or a book) if you don’t.

 

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T.U.F.F. Kids and Blog Tour Day 7

This past Friday I was the guest author for a summer reading program the Austin Memorial Library in my hometown of Cleveland, Texas.  When I was a kid, I absolutely loved the summer reading program.  I was always disappointed when I didn’t end up reading the most books.  This particular library has now expanded and its summer program has grown, which makes me happy and proud.

A group called T.U.F.F. Kids attended my presentation.  T.U.F.F. Kids was founded by a man who is a native of Cleveland, Texas.  Following college and a brief stint as a teacher in another town, he returned home to Cleveland.  He saw that there were no summer activities for kids in the area and decided to start a summer camp.  After the first summer camp proved to be a success, they began year-long enrichment activities.

As someone who taught in a public school for several years, I was very impressed by this group of kids. They listened intently and asked very insightful questions. After I was finished, several of the kids stuck around to receive copies of Identified that were generously donated by Public Management.  The kids started to read it as soon as they sat down. On Monday, one of the directors notified me that some of them finished the book over the weekend!

I am so grateful to T.U.F.F. Kids for starting this summer camp.  They have done a wonderful job with these young men and women and I am happy to see this organization investing in the community.  If you are interested in donating to T.U.F.F. Kids, please visit their website here.

I have also added a few photos from the book signing on my “Fan Photos” page.  I wish I could add a picture of me with the kids, but, being that they are minors, I cannot display photos of them online without their parents’ permission.

Today is also Day 7 of the Identified Blog Tour.  Identified will be visiting the blogs listed below.  Please visit, comment, and enter the giveaways!

Starbucks & Books Obsession-Review and Giveaway

Kiolu & Mimi-Excerpt

Thanks so much for your continued support!

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Blog Tour Day 6

And…we’re back!

The Identified blog tour started back up today and the book is being hosted by some awesome bloggers.

Here’s where you can find Identified today:

Inkk Reviews: Review and Giveaway

Into the Worm’s Hole:  Review

Book Scents: Review and Giveaway

Thanks for stopping by!

 

 

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Blog Tour Day 5

Yesterday was Day 5 of the Identified blog tour.  I was not able to post about it yesterday because I was in my hometown for a book signing!  (More on that later).   Here is where Identified stopped off yesterday:

Every Free Chance Book Reviews: Guest Post (about music!) and Giveaway.

A_ TiffyFit’s Reading Corner: Review and Giveaway

All Things in the Cloud Sweet: Review and Giveaway

The tour will be taking a little break for the weekend and will be back on Monday!

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Blog Tour Day 4

Day 4 has arrived and with it some really great things about my book!

Here’s where Identified will be today:

Krystal’s Enchanting Reads: Guest Post

Words Create Scenes: Review

BookBreathers: Excerpt and Giveaway

Once Upon a Twilight: Interview and Giveaway

The Next Chapter:  Review and Giveaway

Enjoy your visits to these blogs!

 

 

 

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