Monday, August 29, 2011

S.U.R.E.

I'm sure you're wondering about the title of this entry. Actually it has two meanings.

Yesterday afternoon I met with a book club called S.U.R.E. (Sisters United Reading Everything), which had read Have You Seen Her? as their August club selection. I was invited by the wife of one of my former writer’s group members. When she extended the invitation a couple of months ago, I was nervous at the prospect of my first in-person book club visit, so nervous that I sent out Facebook messages to some of my favorite authors asking for advice. Author Beverly Jenkins’ wise guidance was absolutely wonderful and made all the difference. Thanks, Bev for being so forthcoming.

When my husband and I arrived at the beautiful suburban Atlanta home, I was expecting munchies. Sheila, the hostess had mentioned on the phone that they would be having something to eat. What I wasn’t prepared for was a spread that included crudite' and salmon hors d'oeuvres, an incredible spicy, homemade jambalaya (with chicken, sausage and shrimp), rice, salad, garlic bread, margaritas made by her husband, wine and luscious strawberry cream pie!
We ate first then Sheila introduced me to the group, told them how we met and even read the long version of my personal bio. The members of the group, which is fifteen strong, opened by sharing their thoughts and opinions of the book in general. I sat there blushing, as I’d never had a room full of people telling me how much they enjoyed my work. It was truly humbling.

The members, all women over forty, shared their feelings and personal experiences with spousal abuse, the theme of Have You Seen Her? They also talked about what they liked/disliked about the book, which I appreciated. Feedback tells me what I need to do in the future.

One issue they brought to my attention was that Barnes & Noble Nook has the book listed as 900 pages! I was stunned, especially after I had struggled to keep the original manuscript as close to 400 pages as possible. Of course I’ll be checking with PubIt! today to find out why. I don’t want anything in my book descriptions that might scare readers away.
Nervous

I had put together a quiz with questions about the book and brought a few trinkets with me to give out as prizes for those who wanted to participate.

It was SO much fun!

After experiencing this wonderful meeting, there are a few things I am even surer of now:

  • reading is still alive and well
  • I am building a loyal fan base
  • African-American readers are moving into electronic reading
  • Camaraderie among women is unique, soul nourishing and necessary

Thank you, Sheila, Mike and all the ladies of S.U.R.E.
for making my first book club appearance absolutely great!

Friday, August 26, 2011

I love my readers!

This morning I received an e-mail from a reader I had to share (with her permission, of course.)

As an indie author, I am so thankful that I am able to market my books however I see fit. They aren't segregated in the African-American ghetto in the brick and mortar bookstores. As a result, I'd venture to say that the majority of my readers are not African-American. One thing I really appreciate about readers of indie books is they read what they want to read. It doesn't seem to matter what the race of the author is or the race of the characters in a story. They're just looking for a good read at a good price.

Here's the message:

Ms. Brown,

I bought Hot Fun for Kindle because it has a good review and was cheap! When I started reading it, I realized that it was about black characters and I thought I wouldn't be able to get into it or enjoy it at all. I was SO wrong!

I am a very white, Mid-Western, woman. I live in an all-white town, never have had a relationship with any black people and graduated from an all-white school in Iowa and both my colleges were 99% white. You can see why I felt out of my comfort zone. There were a lot of things in the first book that I had to just figure out from context, but that wasn't a distraction and it never hurt the flow of the story. As soon as I finished the book, I immediately bought Hollywood Swinging and have just finished it. Loved the second book, too and hope you continue those character's stories in another book." - reader Vicki M.

Thanks for your honesty and your support, Vicki. I love being an indie author!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday Excerpt #7

I want to thank everyone who bought I Can't Get Next to You this week. You guys rock!

Here's another excerpt taken from Chapter Two:

I hated to admit it, but in a way he was right. Something had happened when I’d seen Jet. Since I’d learned more about how God wanted me to choose a wife, I believed that I would know her when I saw her. Ever since I left Dreamland the other night, I’d been wondering if the ton of bricks that had slammed into my chest when she walked into the VIP room was my confirmation. But an exotic dancer? Come on, Lord. This isn’t funny. I could just imagine introducing her to my family. Talk about Armageddon.


You can pick up the book on Kindle and Nook for $2.99. No need to own an e-reader. Available on Amazon for PC, Mac, phone and iPad. http://amzn.to/pIMyTS & http://bit.ly/q9Wd9o
Get your copy today!

Monday, August 15, 2011

RELEASE DAY!

I am thrilled to announce the release of my first published faith-based novel, I CAN’T GET NEXT TO YOU, available on Kindle and Nook for $2.99.

 Rick Gardner never intended to visit one of Atlanta’s premiere strip clubs, but his fellow attorneys choose that venue to celebrate his latest courtroom victory. A born again Christian, Rick knows Dreamland is the last place he belongs. Still, he’s confident he can withstand the temptation. Until the beautiful woman sent to entertain them walks in …

AVAILABLE NOW on Kindle - http://amzn.to/pouOZq & Nook - http://bit.ly/q9Wd9o 

Also at -

UK Kindle store: http://amzn.to/nGHwgC

DE Kinde store: http://amzn.to/oPzFG0

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday Excerpt #6

This is my last excerpt before the official release of I CAN’T GET NEXT TO YOU on Kindle and Nook tomorrow.

Again, here's what the story is about:

Rick Gardner never intended to visit one of Atlanta’s premiere strip clubs, but his fellow attorneys choose that venue to celebrate his latest courtroom victory. A born again Christian, Rick knows Dreamland is the last place he belongs. Still, he’s confident he can withstand the temptation. Until the beautiful woman sent to entertain them walks in.

A group of married women from a local church arrived at the pole dancing class after me, and I couldn’t help but eavesdrop on their excited chatter. They were trying to spice up their love lives and had organized the outing to learn ways to put more fire in their marriages. It shocked me to know they were allowed to participate in anything so worldly. I guess church had indeed changed since I’d last been there almost twenty years ago.

Release day is tomorrow! Stay tuned for information!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Six Sentence Sunday Excerpt #5

Today I'm continuing with another excerpt from my August 15th release, I Can't Get Next to You.


Excerpt #5:

For the past few weeks Pastor Burnett had been teaching a series on darkness versus light. His message stressed the power of light and how darkness can’t remain in its presence. For two months I’d been exposed to the underbelly of society. Sharing the details of the case with the jury and researching similar cases had burned images of cruelty into my brain. I’d observed jury members grimace in disgust as they listened to the details of my client’s abduction and subsequent brutalization in graphic detail. Every night I went home emotionally and spiritually drained. The only thing that kept me sane was service at church.

If you haven't seen the video trailer yet, you can watch it here:


Have a wonderful Sunday!