Saturday, November 24, 2012

Two More Audiobooks Are Live!!!

Things have really been rolling along lately. I have two more audiobook releases from ACX.  Check them out!!!



First up is The Viscount's Surprise brilliantly narrated by Pearl Hewitt and VoiceNeeds. This is another one of my Damsels in Breeches Regency Novellas. It's a fun, fast-paced romp through Regency England that's sure to please.


Next up is Texan Undercover narrated by the ever-so-talented Courtney Tulba. Texan Undercover is a Romantic Suspense novel set in 1998 Austin, Texas.  It's a fun, action-packed retro-read.

Both audiobooks are available at Audible, Amazon and iTunes.

Happy Listening!!!

Anne Marie   :)


Thursday, November 15, 2012

Another Audiobook Release!!!


Portrait of a Gentleman is out in audiobook format from ACX. The awesomely talented Pearl Hewitt of VoiceNeeds narrated this Damsels in Breeches Regency novella. Pearl brings the story alive, and I must say I laughed and cried as I listened to the story unfold. Check it out at Audible, Amazon, iTunes.

Blurb: Thankful for the chance to leave London and escape the unwelcome advances of an ardent suitor, Abigail Prescott accepts an invitation to Brydmoor Castle to paint the portrait of the reclusive Viscount Devlin and his small son. A young widow in straightened circumstances, she soon finds herself ensconced in his home and the object of his unwavering attention.

Nathan Holt vows never to marry again. He's done his duty and has an heir. But when Abigail Prescott comes into his vicinity, the daily presence of her in his home becomes a temptation too hard to resist. Unable to deny himself any longer, he begins his seduction of her in earnest, only to find that once will never be enough.

©2012 Anne Marie Novark (P)2012 Anne Marie Novark

Thursday, November 08, 2012

New Audiobook Release!!!



Adam's Temptation is out in audiobook format through ACX. The very talented Kathy Bell Denton narrated and produced the story. Check it out on Audible, Amazon and iTunes.


BLURB:

Millionaire professor, Adam Brant is hiding from life. When his broken engagement is plastered all over the papers and tabloids, he retreats to the only place he’s ever felt he belonged–his late grandmother’s lighthouse in Briny Cove, Florida. He vows to live in seclusion away from nosy reporters, money-hungry women and people who can’t accept him for who he is.

Ambitious wanna-be journalist, Megan O’Conner is stuck in Briny Cove, living with her family, struggling to finish her degree and working odd jobs. When she finds out the new tenant in the old lighthouse is Adam Brant, Megan believes she’s found her ticket out. But as she becomes better acquainted with the sexy professor, everything changes. Will she choose the exclusive story or the man who has stolen her heart?


Happy Listening!!!

Anne Marie   :)

Sunday, October 28, 2012

My New York Adventure


 For those of you who are acquainted with me, you know that I'm a homebody and I don't really venture too far from the old homestead. I don't like crowds; I don't like to go shopping; and my idea of a night of fun is curling up in my pj's with a good book to read or a classic movie to watch.

So why in heaven's name did I decide take a New York vacation? Well, my son lives there, and it was past time that we went to visit him. I had never really thought about going to NYC, but once we made up our minds and set the date, I got with the program. We were slated to be there for four full days and two half travel days.



I didn't want to plan too many things because I didn't want to feel rushed and stressed out about keeping to a schedule. So I only booked three activities: a Manhattan bus tour, catching the Broadway show The Phantom of the Opera and doing lunch with my producer and narrators from Brick Shop Audiobooks. We "winged" the rest of the visit.

We decided to splurge and stay in a hotel in the middle of Manhattan. We stayed at the Hotel Elysee which is a small elegant hotel right there on 54th Street between Madison and Park Avenues. I wanted the "New York Experience," and I certainly got it. The hotel is tastefully furnished in antiques and it became our quiet haven in the midst of the hustle and bustle of NYC. There's a Club Room on the second floor where they serve scrumptious Continental breakfasts every morning and wine and cheese in the evenings. Awesome!!!

 
We took the six-hour bus tour the first day and rode all over Manhattan, ate in Little Italy, saw the World Trade Center Memorial, Grant's Tomb, Harlem, a couple of famous churches, and we walked in Central Park in the rain.  We also took a ferry ride to see Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty. As I stood on deck, I imagined what my ancestors must have felt like immigrating from the Old Country seeking freedom and better lives in America. I felt very patriotic.

It was a perfect activity for a rainy day and we got acclimated to the city somewhat. It was quite a culture shock to someone who has lived in Texas her whole life. The density of the population is mind-boggling.




On Saturday, we saw The Phantom of the Opera at the Majestic Theater. I was afraid my husband wasn't going to like it very much, but he thoroughly enjoyed it. It was phenomenal!!!




Every day, we ate at great restaurants my son recommended. Such delicious food. We had steak a couple of nights cooked to perfection. I ate Thai food one day, tried escargot (not a fan) and raw oysters which were surprisingly good.  And desserts! I love sweets.


 

Sunday, we spent a leisurely morning at the hotel, then toured the Empire State Building. I'm so glad we visited it. I love An Affair to Remember and Sleepless in Seattle, both of which have those famous scenes on top of the Empire State Building.






After that, we went to Macy's on 34th Street. Macy's was fun with the old-fashioned wooden escalators, crowded but fun.










Times Square was next. Boy, it was so crowded and noisy!!! Lots of tourists!!! We actually got to see the Naked Cowboy. Sorry, no pictures.











Monday was very special. We had lunch with my very talented producer, Christopher Lee and my two narrators from Brick Shop Audiobooks. Jennifer O'Donnell and Erin Mallon are doing a great job narrating my Contemporary Western Series: Return to Stone Creek and The Diamondback Ranch Series. We all hit it off and spent a very enjoyable hour or so eating pizza and giving each other high-fives and kudos.



The rest of the trip was done on the fly, not really planned; we just winged it. We toured St. Patrick's Cathedral, ate hotdogs at Gray's Papaya and visited the Museum of Natural History. We rode the subway everywhere and walked miles and miles. We saw Grand Central Station and passed by NBC, CBS and ABC. And of course, I had to window shop at Tiffany's.


Tuesday, we checked out of the hotel and rode a taxi to Brooklyn Heights where my son lives. Got to see his apartment which is five floors up. It's very nice and has a great view of Manhattan across the river. We walked all over his neighborhood and ate NY-style pizza at Grimaldi's.





We had a very late flight, so we had time to tour Dumbo, see the BQE and walk along the Promenade and the Brooklyn Bridge. We saw parts of downtown Brooklyn, too.

Needless to say, my feet were killing me by this time. But I soldiered on and Gene called a car service to pick us up and take us to JFK Airport. The flight home was very nice. It had been many years since I'd flown at night. A totally different experience than daytime flight.


 




All in all, the trip to NYC was fabulous. You always hear about how rude people are in NY, but everyone James and I encountered were very friendly and helpful. I truly was sorry to leave. But it's always nice to come home. Although I have to admit, it was kind of a culture shock in reverse returning to Houston.





Cheers!!!

Anne Marie   :)



Thursday, October 04, 2012

Two New Audiobook Releases!!!

I'm happy to announce two more audiobook releases by ACX!!!


Her Reluctant Rancher is the first book in my Return to Stone Creek Contemporary Western Romance series. Jennifer O'Donnell of Brick Shop Audiobooks narrated it and did an amazing job. Look for it at Audible, Amazon and iTunes.


And for my Diamondback Ranch fans, I'm more than happy to announce the release of Book One: The Doctor Wears A Stetson!!! Erin Mallon of Brick Shop Audiobooks did an awesome job narrating Jessie and Cameron's story. Check it out at Audible, Amazon and iTunes!!!

Also, a big thank you to Chris of Brick Shop Audiobooks for keeping me informed every step of the way and producing excellent quality products!!! Thank you!!!

Happy Listening!!!

Anne Marie   :)


Thursday, September 27, 2012

October Obsession BIAM Writathon 2012!!!



Ever want to write a book but never had the time? Join my Book-in-a-Month Writathon and dedicate the entire month of October to writing, writing and more writing!!!

Actually, you don't have to write an entire book during The Obsession. You can edit, plot, publish, tweak . . . whatever! What is important is getting a big chunk of work done.

Join October Obsession 2012 and our great group of writers banding together to write, write, and write some more!!!

Contact me either through this blog or go to www.annemarienovark.com.

Spread the word and Happy Writing!!!

Anne Marie   :)

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Twenty-five Random Facts about AnneMarie . . .



 Twenty-five things about me you probably didn't know:

1.   I drive a silver 2001 Honda Accord. Yes, I've had it that long.

2.   Because I'm pretty much a tightwad.

3.   I married my high school sweetheart thirty-five years ago.

4.  I have two grown kids, both out of the nest.

5.  I used to be a cat person; now I love dogs.

6.  Since the kids moved out, I've pretty much become the tech-support gal in the house. I find this amusing, since I'm basically techno-challenged. Thank goodness for Google. Shhh . . .

7.   I enjoy making homemade jams and jellies.

8.  Georgette Heyer is my favorite all-time author. I read my first GH book when I was fifteen and love all things Regency.

9.   I attended Catholic school.

10. I love old movies, especially the romantic comedies of the fifties and sixties.

11. I tend to see the good in people and situations. Just call me Pollyanna-marie.

12. I also tend to see both sides of an argument or discussion. Not always a good thing.

13. I don't drink alcohol except for the occasional frozen daiquiri. Not that I'm against drinking, but it's just not me.

14. I'm a dedicated tea drinker. I'm not particularly fond of coffee, although I love how it smells.

15.  I'm the quiet shy type in social situations. I'd much rather stay home and read a good book than go to a party.

16. This probably explains the fact that I tend to lurk on forums. But I love live chats; go figure.

17.  I love antiques. Almost every piece of furniture in the house has an interesting (or not so interesting) story: the sofa is from Salvation Army; that chair was bought at a garage sale; I got that lamp in the library silent auction, etc.

18. I love vintage Tupperware and Corning Ware.

19.  But I'm not crazy about cooking. I'm a pretty good cook, but only do it because we have to eat.

20.  Which leads to: I really really enjoy eating out.

21.  I'm the oldest of three children. Family is important to me.

22.  I prefer Apple products over the other kind. I have an iMac, iPhone, iPad, iPod, etc.

23. When I get excited, I tend to talk loud.

24. I love humming birds.

25.  My lucky number is 13.


Cheers!

Anne Marie   :)

Monday, August 13, 2012

Writerly Moments



Being a writer certainly has its moments. I think being an Indie Author has even more writerly moments, because when a writer publishes directly to the readers, he/she wears many different hats.

This past weekend was a prime example. I've been an Indie Author for two years now. The second book I published was THE DOCTOR WEARS A STETSON. This book has done extremely well and it's the first book in my Diamondback Ranch Series. Readers love this series. I do, too.

So now I'm venturing out into audiobooks and print books. I want to make my books available across as many different platforms as possible. Choosing narrators for my books has been an adventure in and of itself. I was lucky to find the perfect narrator for my Regencies; finding narrators for my Contemporary Westerns has been a little more difficult.

Yes, they're set in Texas and yes, the people have a Southern accent, but writing a Southern accent and speaking it are two different animals. I didn't like how the accents sounded, so I requested Mainstream American accents, and after many auditions I finally found good matches.

I also didn't want to format for print again, so I found someone to format for me at a very reasonable price. (More on that later.)

Anyway, back to writerly moments. Over this past weekend, I had to proof-listen to the first fifteen minutes of THE DOCTOR WEARS A STETSON. I also had to "proof" the galleys for the new CreateSpace version.

What I think is super cool is this book went live over two years ago. It's sold very well and is still selling. But what a coincidence that I was having to proof the audio version and the print version on the same day.

I love writerly moments. Just wanted to share.

AM   :)

Thursday, August 09, 2012

Now Available in Audio: To His Lady's Rescue


My Indie Adventure Continues 

Another writerly moment to celebrate today. I'm happy to announce my first audiobook is now available for sale. You can find To His Lady's Rescue at Audible.com, Amazon and iTunes.

Arranging and contracting the making of an audiobook has been an exciting learning adventure. Thank goodness, there's ACX where authors, narrators and producers can hook up and work together. Finding the perfect narrator is a difficult undertaking.

With that being said, it never ceases to amaze me how serendipity sometimes plays an intregal part in my life and decision-making process. It certainly played an important part in helping me to find the most awesome narrator for my first audiobook project.

Here's how it happened:

My husband was talking to a coworker, and somehow the conversation turned toward what I did for a living. James told her I was an author and how I published on Kindle and Nook, and that I was wanting to make my books available in audio. Well, this woman said she had a good friend who did voice-over work and narrations for a living. 

And that's how I got in touch with the fabulously talented Pearl Hewitt and VoiceNeeds. We exchanged emails and she auditioned for me on ACX. From the first moment I heard Pearl's voice reading my story, I knew I had found the perfect narrator for my Regency Romances. As I sat listening, I was enthralled in the story and couldn't believe I had actually written the text. Pearl made the story come alive and because she had experience with working through ACX, she helped me through every step in the process.

A cool thing about working with Pearl is that she lives fairly close to where I live. When we finished our book, we met for a celebratory luncheon. And since we'd exchanged emails, texted, talked on the phone and worked on the project together, it didn't take very long at that first meeting to feel like we'd known each other forever.  That really made this first audio venture extra special for me.

Making audiobooks is a team effort. When you find the right narrator for your story, you have to give up a little of the control and trust the professionals to do their job. If you've chosen well, they will make your work sound brilliant.

Happy Listening!!!

Anne Marie  :)

Monday, August 06, 2012

Celebrating My Two Year Anniversary of Indie Publishing: A Retrospective/Looking Back



Today marks my second anniversary as an Indie Author. It's been a wild tempestuous twelve months. The first year I worked on getting my back list published; this year, I'm having to write new stories.

Having to write . . . like that's bad or something. Hah!  I'm finally living my dream; I'm writing stories and sharing them with readers. And making a little dab of money.

Writing/publishing . . . writing/publishing . . . How awesome is that?!?

Publishing directly to readers not only gives me total control of every aspect of the writing/publishing operation, it also allows me to experiment and try new things. For example, I tried my hand at writing short stories and had a lot of fun with them.

So far during this second year (beginning last August), I've published seven stories for a total of seventeen products available to readers across many channels. I've added three short stories, sold individually and in a bundle, two Regency novellas, and the fourth novel in my Diamondback Ranch Series.

And talking about trying new things: I have audio versions in the works, as well as print. I'm very curious about how the audio books will sell. It should be interesting. It certainly has been an interesting experience choosing narrators for the different books and series.

I'm a firm believer in making my books available across as many channels and in as many different formats as possible to the reading and listening public. The more, the better.

It's been a busy year. Publishing directly is a lot of hard work. And like I've said before: It's not for the faint of heart. It's still a roller-coaster ride in regards to sales and emotions.

Last November and December, sales were bleak for me. During this time, I took a look at my covers and decided on revamping them and creating an Anne Marie Novark brand. It seemed to work. With the sexier covers, sales started picking up.

April was a spectacular month. The kind of month authors only dream about. I hit the best seller lists at Amazon, B&N and Apple. I received many fan emails, mostly asking when the next book in the Diamondback Ranch Series would be available. And naturally, I was hard at work on it.

Last week, I released Lone Star Heartbreaker, and it has given my sales a much needed boost. It has certainly reinforced the maxim that the next book is the best promotion. And of course, I was holding my breath wondering if the book would live up to my readers' expectations. From the amount of emails I've received, it has. Thank goodness!

I'm so glad I took the Indie plunge. I've found the joy in writing again, and sharing my stories with readers is my dream come true.

Every sale is golden; every enthusiastic email priceless.

Happy Writing and Reading and Publishing!!!

Anne Marie   :)

Wednesday, August 01, 2012

New Release!!! Lone Star Heartbreaker




I'm very happy to announce the release of Lone Star Heartbreaker. This is the fourth book in my Diamondback Ranch Series. I had a lot of fun writing Tyler's story, and it's always fun to revisit the Diamondback Ranch. Enjoy!!!

LONE STAR HEARTBREAKER
Book Four: The Diamondback Ranch Series
by Anne Marie Novark

To order a digital copy:

Here's the blurb:

Tyler McCade is the youngest McCade brother in Salt Fork, Texas, and the biggest heartbreaker of them all. Or he was--until a plane crash wrecks his body and sends his crop-dusting company into a tailspin. Needing time to heal and form a new business plan, he retreats to the Diamondback Ranch, where he spends too much time alone tormented by the possibility that the accident might have been his fault.

Caitlyn Ross lives to fly planes. Accepting the job as pilot for Lone Star Wings seems like a dream come true. But when she packs up everything she owns and finds herself working for the brooding Tyler McCade, her defenses go on high alert. The sexual tension sizzles, but does she have what it takes to help him heal? And is she even brave enough to try?


Here's the excerpt:

"It's getting late and it's been a long day," Tyler said. "I'll see you in the morning."

He started past her toward the door.  Before Caitlyn could think better of it, she grabbed the sleeve of his shirt to stall his departure. "Wait."

He stared at her hand on his arm, then at her, but didn’t pull away.  “What do you think you’re doing?” he asked in a dangerously soft voice.

Obviously playing with fire, that's what.

Caitlyn quickly dropped her hand.  She didn’t know what had prompted her to touch Tyler, but that brief contact left her fingers scorched and her heart racing. "Ignoring the situation isn't going to make it go away," she said.

"What the hell’s that supposed to mean?" His voice went softer, more dangerous. His hot blue eyes lasered in on her. "What situation?"

She swallowed hard. Anger mixed with the strong sexual vibes pulsated between them. “I’ve been here for almost a month,” she said.  “Except for that first day when we had dinner together, you’ve been avoiding me like the plague."

He stepped toward her, his big body seemingly growing, expanding with his anger. Irritation. Something. “I taught you what you needed to know to be an ag pilot, didn't I?"

Caitlyn stepped back. "Yes."

Tyler took two steps forward. "I didn't avoid you then, did I?" he said between gritted teeth.

"No. Not exactly." God, the man was tense. And now he was invading her personal space. How could she have thought for a moment that she'd imagined those sparks of awareness shooting between them? They were brighter and more intense than fireworks on the Fourth of July. "But you can't deny you've been avoiding me since then, can you?"

Tyler stood directly in front of Caitlyn and stared into her eyes. He was close enough to smell her fragrance, feel the heat from her body. Her windblown hair tumbled around her face in wild disarray.  His fingers itched to run themselves through the silken tangles.  He wanted to feel her body close to his.

Unable to help himself, he reached out one hand and touched her soft cheek. She closed her eyes and her dark lashes made feathery crescents against her creamy skin. He'd been dying to touch her again.

He rubbed his thumb across her bottom lip. Back and forth. Back and forth, until her eyes flew open. Keeping his gaze locked on hers, he leisurely traced his finger down her jaw line and the curve of her neck, only stopping when he reached the top of one rounded breast. "This is why I've been avoiding you . . ."

###

Happy Reading!!!

Anne Marie   :)

Monday, June 25, 2012

BICHOK!!!


Butt in chair/hands on keyboard time for me. I've finally finished writing Tyler McCade's story. It's the fourth book in the Diamondback Ranch series. I've heard from many readers who are dying for Tyler's story. I've waited a long time for his story, too.  *grin*

Lone Star Heartbreaker will be out later in the summer. Stay tuned . . .

Here are my writing goals for the week:

*  Finish final pass on LSH before handing it off to beta readers.

*  Work on mailing lists.

*  Rework back matter in all the live books and re-upload accordingly.

*  Start organizing my writing.

*  Start a "bible" for all the characters, settings, endings in all of my books, so I can keep better track of everything.

*  Work on the mandatory cover changes. Ugh.

*  Continue proofing Mother's Regencies.

Okay, that should keep me busy for a lot longer than just this week. So many books; so little time.

Happy Writing!!!


Anne Marie  :)


Saturday, May 26, 2012

How to Insert a Hyperlink into an MS Word Doc

Techno-tips for the Techno-Challenged



In this new paradigm of publishing, many authors (myself included) format their own documents to upload to Amazon, B&N, Smashwords, Apple iTunes and All Romance eBooks, just to name a few. There are a myriad of small details to tend to before Word documents are ready for prime time.

Back matter in ebooks can include the author's website, blog, Author pages, mailing lists, and probably the most important: Clickable links to buy the author's other books at each of the respective retailers.

Inserting hyperlinks in Word documents isn't difficult once you learn a couple of tricks. Once again, my instructions are for MS Word 2008 on an Apple machine. You will need to adjust the directions to whichever version of MS Word you use.

So, say you're formatting a book for Kindle. After the last sentence of the story, you might want to say something like this:

###

For more books by Anne Marie Novark,
Go to Amazon.com.
 
1.  To make Amazon.com a live hyperlink for readers, first get online and link to your Author Central page (you have one, don't you?) or search for your books on Amazon and locate the page where all of your works are listed on Kindle.

2.  Copy the web address located in the long "box" showing the URL (highlight the web address, right click and choose Copy).

3.  Go back to your Word document and highlight "Amazon.com."

4.  Go to the top tool bar where it says File, Edit, View, Insert, etc. and click on Insert.

5.  Choose Hyperlink from the drop-down box.

6.  In the pop-up window, "Amazon.com" should be in the Display box.

7.  In the pop-up window, place the cursor in the Link to box.

8.  Press Command (or Control) V. (Right clicking and pasting will not work.)

9.  The web address to your books at Amazon will appear in the Link to box.

10. Press OKAY, and you will have a live hyperlink to your list of books at the end of your ebook.

###

Of course, it goes without saying: You don't want to link to B&N at the back of the Kindle Edition or vice versa.

It's also better IMO, not to provide live links to your books in the Smashwords Edition since that version will be sent to other distributors. I do link to my website, but I just list the titles of my other works in the back matter on Smashwords.

Yes, this takes a bit more time and effort when you're publishing your ebooks. But providing hyperlinks to your back list will make it easier for readers to find and read more of your books.

Happy Publishing!!!


AM   :)





Sunday, May 20, 2012

Movies: Oldies but Goodies


I'm an old movie buff. I love watching the old-fashioned romances of the fifties and sixties. Ahhh, the good old days. When time moved at a slower pace and life was simpler. Or so it seemed.

The human condition stays pretty constant. From the beginning of time, most human beings have searched for partners with whom to share life and love and day-to-day living. A special someone makes life more interesting and gives it more meaning. At least, in my opinion.

Recently, I've been watching movies that I remember from childhood. Not having subscribed to cable for the past thirty years, I haven't had easy access to old movies. I'll think of a movie that stands out in my mind, then search Amazon for the title. Sometimes, I don't know the title, just one of the actors or actresses.

Sometimes, only one scene will stick in my mind, and it makes me want to watch the movie as an adult. One such movie is Come September. All I remembered about this movie was that it starred Rock Hudson and Gina Lollobrigida. Sandra Dee and Bobby Darin were also in the film.

I knew it was set somewhere in Europe and there was some sort of mix-up with a villa and tourists. But what really stuck out in my mind was a scene where Gina Lollobrigida winked one eye without squinting. I must have been ten or eleven when I saw this movie for the first time, and I remember practicing and practicing until I could wink like Gina.

Watching the movie again was fun. It's one of those classic romantic comedies of the day. Viewing it as an older adult gave me an entirely different perspective on the film. I'm now older than the lead characters in the movie, but Rock Hudson was as handsome as ever and Gina Lollobrigida was truly gorgeous.


AM   :)



Tuesday, May 08, 2012

You've Got Mail!


Or rather, I have mail. Email. From happy readers! A writer's dream come true!!!

I've been receiving email from happy readers almost from the beginning of my Indie Publishing Adventure. They are all wondering when the fourth book in the The Diamondback Ranch Series will be available.

Are you going to continue the series? What about Tyler? What about Tori? And what about that sexy dark-haired Sam?

A couple of readers are wondering about Kelsey? Will she grow up and get her very own book?

The Diamondback Ranch Series is very dear to my heart. I created the McCade Family many years ago and now I've been fortunate enough to share them with readers. It's so gratifying to know they love the four brothers and sister just as much as I do.

So, YES!!! I'm working on Tyler's book right now. Then Tori and Sam will have their story. And we need to let Kelsey grow up because she's only thirteen. But here's a little secret: I already know who her hero will be!!!

I'm having so much fun writing this series.  Along with the readers, I can't wait to see how the stories and romances turn out. And I get to write them!!!

Happy Reading!!!


Anne Marie    :)

Monday, April 23, 2012

BICHOK Monday!!!


Where in the world has the time gone? We're in the last week of April Madness 2012, and I'm nowhere near where I wanted to be by this time. Sigh. Although, I have trudged through almost all of the wordage I had already written (and deleted) and salvaged some of it by tweaking and editing. So, I plan to make the most of this last BIAM week. Really, I do! Here's hoping I can get some serious writing done.

Here are my goals:

*  Research more about plane crashes and injuries.

*  Write 5-6 thousand new words on this Tyler book.

*  Continue searching for cover photo.

*  Choose a title.

*  Continue editing my Mom's book THUNDERMOON.

Okay, that should keep me busy.

Happy Writing!!!


Anne Marie   :)


Monday, April 16, 2012

One Hundred Thousand Ebooks Sold and Counting!!!



Can you believe it??? I'm still in shock! I was aware the auspicious milestone loomed over the horizon, and I was hoping against hope I would hit it by August in time for my two-year anniversary as an Indie Author. It came four months early, and I'm not complaining. Yesterday, when I tallied up the numbers and saw the total was a little over the 100k mark--Wow! What a truly awesome writerly moment!!!

OMG!!! Over 100, 000 people have bought my books. And many many of them have actually read them and enjoyed them. I know because they write and tell me so.

My heart is bursting with happiness and gratitude.

Wow!!! Just WOW!!!

Thank you to all of my wonderful readers who've fallen in love with my heroes and who root for my heroines. It doesn't get much better than this for a writer. At least for me, it doesn't.

So let's compare this time last year to now:

*  Last year, on the very same weekend in April, I hit the ten-thousand mark. Isn't that wild?

*  Last year, my Regencies took off and had a fabulous run of sales. This year, it's my Cowboy Romances.

*  Last year at this time, I hadn't received any fan mail. This year, I'm lucky enough to hear from happy readers on a regular basis. A letter from a reader never fails to brighten my day.

*  Last year at this time, I had six titles up. This year, I have sixteen. (And of course, I plan to write and publish more.)

*  Last year, my Amazon sales vastly outnumbered my B&N numbers. This year, the opposite is true.

*   Last year, most of my titles were $0.99. This year, I have more at the $2.99 price point.

*  Last year, I gave away 500 free books during Smashwords' Promotional Events. This year, the number has grown to 2000 +.

*  Last year, I hit the Bestseller lists only on Amazon. This year, my books hit all three Bestseller lists--Amazon, Apple and B&N.

*  Last year, I was ecstatically happy with my sales and with making the decision to go 100% Indie. This year, I STILL AM!!! Even more so!!!

 ###

My self-publishing adventures just keep getting better and better.  It's a GREAT time to be a writer!!!

Happy Reading and Writing!!!


Anne Marie   :)

Monday, April 02, 2012

BICHOK Monday!!!



It's a rainy Monday here on the Gulf Coast, but I'm not letting it get me down. April Madness 2012 is well underway.  Lots of writing going on, and that's a good thing. It's not too late to join my BIAM.  If you need a swift kick in the rear to get back on the writing wagon, shoot me an email so you can join the loop.

Here are my writing goals for the week:

*  Trudge through the 20k words I've written on Tyler's book to get it up to speed with the new motivations and "issues."

*  Try to keep up with the BIAMers on the loop.

*  Keep looking for a cover picture for Tyler's book.

*  Work on getting my mom's rights reverted.

Let's make this week a productive one!!!

Happy Writing!!!

AM   :)

Monday, March 26, 2012

April Madness 2012 BIAM Writathon is Just Around the Corner!!!


It's that time of year again!!! Not only are the pear trees blooming and the wild flowers are profuse in beauty, it's time for the Eighth Annual April Madness BIAM Writathon!!!

If you're in need of a boost back onto the writing wagon, April Madness might be just what the doctor ordered. Or the muse, to be more precise.

To find out more about my yearly writathons, visit my website and click on Book in a Month: Anne Marie-Style.

Come on and join the fun, and let's get a big chunk of writing done during the month of April. You'll be glad you did. (And so will your Muse.)

Happy Writing!!!


Anne Marie   :)

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Adam's Temptation Nominated for TRR's Best Contemporary Romance in 2011!!!


Okay, this is too cool. Out of the blue, I received an email saying Adam's Temptation has been nominated by TRR reviewers for Best Romance – Contemporary Romance (2011) at The Romance Reviews (“TRR”). 

OMG!!! What an honor!!! 

Adam's Temptation is my Beauty and the Geek romance with a handsome professor hero and a cute spunky heroine. I call it my lighthouse story, because I love lighthouses and of course, I had to set a romance in one. *grin*






The Romance Review

 

Please vote for Adam's Temptation for Best Contemporary Romance of 2011 by The Romance Reviewers. 

You can click on the above button or go here to vote:
http://www.theromancereviews.com/bookvote.php

Scroll down until you come to Contemporary Nominees and PLEASE VOTE!!! Voting is open from March 16-31. You can log in with your Facebook account. That's what I did.

Thanks for your support!!!

Happy Reading and Writing!!!

Anne Marie   :)



Thursday, March 15, 2012

Promo, Marketing and Sales! Oh my!!!


I'm a firm believer in the maxim: The best promo is to write the next book. So that's what I focus on--writing more books. I also focus on enjoying the process and having fun. If I have fun writing my books, readers will have fun reading them, right?

I only do bare-bones promotion. When I publish a novel or novella or short story, I send out announcements on FB, Twitter and my mailing list. I make an "announcement/book page" on the Book Bazaar thread on the Kindle Boards. I post the cover, blurb and excerpt on my blog and my website with links to buy from whichever site the reader chooses. Then I move on and start writing the next book. Rinse and repeat. Rinse and repeat.

Marketing is more important than promotion, IMO. A great story (or a cute little romance, in my case), a catchy title, a professional-looking cover, an enticing blurb, a brand, an excerpt that makes the reader want more, clean copy and formatting--these are all things within my control to some extent. I can set these things in order when publishing the book, then move on and start the next project.

That's not to say these things can't be tweaked or revamped along the way. Last December, I revamped all my covers and some of my blurbs. Now my books have a unified look;  an "Anne Marie Novark" brand, if you will.

Pricing is also marketing (at least, IMO). You have to find your sweet spot. I've finally gotten to the point where I can charge $2.99 for my novel-length works and $0.99 for the shorter works. I have the first book in The Diamondback Ranch Series at 99 cents to make it easier for readers to try it out. I have 2 or 3 more books to write in this series. Readers are actually wanting these books ASAP. Life is good. *grin*

Another marketing tool I take advantage of and put into place when publishing is including links in the backs of all my books for all or most of my other books. I want to make it as easy as possible for readers who enjoy reading one of my books to be able to find and read another as soon as they finish.

An additional marketing tool I put into place is including the blurb in the front matter of my books. Many times, readers load their eReaders with many many titles. I want them to easily remember why they chose one of my books when they begin searching their stored list of books for something to read. I want them to see my title, read the short blurb and think: "Oh, yeah! This sounds good!" then start reading.

Keywords and categories are extremely important marketing tools. You need to figure out which search words and phrases readers put in when looking for books like yours to read and make sure you tag your books accordingly. I've played around with keywords and categories for months. Finding the best combination helps Amazon's and B&N's search engines and algorithms to place and position your books, so they do a big chunk of your marketing for you. Automatically. Technology is a great thing, isn't it? 

Here are a few ways I've gotten my name "out there:"

*  I've written articles for my RWA Chapter Newsletter.
*  I've taught online workshops.
*  I host two BIAM Writathons a year. (April Madness 2012 anyone?)
*  I leave comments on blogs that I read. (I actually need to do this more.)
*  I participate at the Writers' Cafe on the Kindle Boards and have clickable book covers in my signature.
*  I have links to my website and blog in my email signatures.

I publish my titles across as many platforms as possible. The more titles you have out there all over the web, the bigger your digital footprint, and the better chance you have of readers discovering your books.

Naturally, luck plays a part in being discovered. I think people can help make their own luck by writing more and more books and adding to their arsenal.  We're in this for the long haul. It's a marathon, not a sprint. Ebooks don't go stale. Keep writing, so when you finally get lucky, your readers will have an impressive backlist to read from their new favorite author.

Happy Writing!!!


Anne Marie   :)

Saturday, March 10, 2012

New Release: Portrait of a Gentleman



I'm pleased to announce my first new release of 2012!!! Portrait of a Gentleman is the third book in my Damsels in Breeches Regency Novella Series. This story is a little more intense than the other books in the series. The tone is similar to my full-length Regency novel, Midnight My Love. I laughed and cried while writing Abigail and Nathan's story. I hope it pleases readers who love Regency Romance.

Here's the blurb:

Thankful for the chance to leave London and escape the unwelcome advances of an ardent suitor, Abigail Prescott accepts an invitation to Brydmoor Castle to paint the portrait of the reclusive Viscount Devlin and his small son. A young widow in straightened circumstances, she soon finds herself ensconced in his home and the object of his unwavering attention.

Nathan Holt vows never to marry again. He's done his duty and has an heir. But when Abigail Prescott comes into his vicinity, the daily presence of her in his home becomes a temptation too hard to resist. Unable to deny himself any longer, he begins his seduction of her in earnest, only to find that once will never be enough.


Here's the excerpt:

Candles flickered in their holders, the shadows dancing on the walls and across the massive stone hearth in the Great Hall. It was late. Abigail had been restless lying in bed and decided to come downstairs. Perhaps she could add some of the finishing touches to the nearly finished portrait of Nathan and William.

"Couldn't sleep?" The deep voice echoed in the vastness of the hall.

Abigail gasped and whirled around in time to see Nathan emerge from the shadows. "You frightened me," she said, her own voice breathless in her ears. Warily, she watched his approach; his firm tread loud in the hush of the night.

He walked straight toward her, his eyes holding hers in a look as old as time itself. Her stomach plummeted and her skin tingled against the silky fabric of her nightgown. Since she'd seen him last, he'd removed his coat and neckcloth and his shirt was unbuttoned at the throat. He'd obviously not gone to bed yet, late as it was.

Standing before her, he took the paintbrush from her limp fingers and set it on the table next to the easel. "I couldn't sleep either," he said, his voice low and rough. "All I could think about was . . . this."

###

Portrait of a Gentleman is available:

Amazon
B&N
All Romance
Smashwords

Happy Reading!!!


Anne Marie   :)

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Seventy-five Thousand Ebooks Sold and Counting!!!


It's Leap Day and I'm leaping for joy!!! Doing a Happy Dance!!! Singing in my heart!!!

I've reached the awesome milestone of selling 75,000 ebooks!!! (Actually, it's closer to 77,000.) That's across all channels with fifteen titles. It's hard to believe. I'm in awe!!!

I'd like to thank the Academy . . . No, really. I'd like to thank all of my wonderful readers for taking a chance on my stories. Many of you have sent me emails telling me how much you've enjoyed reading my books. Each letter warms my heart and gives me motivation to keep writing and sharing my "cute little romances."

Last February, I reached the milestone of selling 1000 ebooks. I remember my astonishment and awe. You can read about it here. I wanted to shout from the rooftops. It was truly a writerly moment to treasure.

Selling 75,000 is that much better. Wow! Just WOW!!!

What a year it's been! I finished putting up my backlist and wrote a Regency novella and four short stories. By the end of the year, I had the fifteen titles live. I revamped all my covers and sales have been steady ever since.

I'm hard at work tweaking the next Damsels in Breeches Regency novella, which I hope will go live on St. Patrick's Day. Then it's back to work on my next Diamondback Ranch novel. Everyone is dying for Tyler McCade's story. So am I. *grin*

It's a great time to be a writer!!!

Happy Writing and Reading!!!


Anne Marie   :)

Saturday, February 04, 2012

More New Covers

Here is the last batch of my new and revamped covers. I particularly like the way they all visually hook together. Now, there's an Anne Marie Novark book brand.






Adam's Temptation is the only contemporary book of mine not set in Texas. The Florida location and the lighthouse was fun to write. Of course, the characters are fun, too.




The two revamped covers for my Return to Stone Creek series are eye-catching. Her Reluctant Rancher got a complete face-lift. Much sexier than the windmill on the original edition, IMO.







I used the same photo image for Tall Dark and Texan. The fonts were changed and rearranged to make the cover more consistent with the rest of my books.












 Last but certainly not least, Texan Undercover kept the same gorgeous Jimmy Thomas photo. The fonts were changed and also rearranged to give it an Anne Marie Novark kind of look.







All in all, I'm very pleased with the results. From here on in, my book covers will have the same look.

Happy Reading!!!


AM   :)

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

How to Make a Clickable Image Link

 Techno-Tips for the Techno-Challenged

width"264"=


If you've ever wondered how to make a picture or image clickable as in making it a hyperlink, look no more. I'm going to show you how to do it in the simplest way even the most techno-challenged person can understand. I know, because I'm pretty much a techno-klutz (as you know).

First your image must be somewhere online, whether on your website, blog or a photo-site like Flikr or Photobucket. To find the web address of the image, right-click on your image and choose View Image. The image's URL will appear in the "address window."

Basic html code for an image hyperlink:

 <a href="web address you're linking to"><img src="web address of image you're linking from"></a>

1.  Copy and paste the URL/web address of the site you're linking to in the code above. Replace the first green string of words with your URL of the destination site.

Example:  <a href="http://annemarienovark.com/?p=885"

2.  Copy and paste the Image's URL/web address that you located the very first thing into the code above. Replace the second green string of words with the URL of your image.

Example:  ><img src="http://annemarienovark.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/ToHisLadysRescueLg-683x1024.jpg"></a>

To control the image size, you can add parameters to the code like this:

<a href="web address you're linking to"><img alt="width"164"=" border="0" height="308"  src="web address of image you're linking from"></a>


This line of code makes the picture this size:

 width"164"=

If you want a smaller image, you change the width and height like this:

<a href="web address you're linking to"><img alt="width"64"=" border="0" height="208"  src="web address of image you're linking from"></a>

 width"64"=

To center the position of your image, you add this parameter:

<center><a href="web address you're linking to">img alt="width"64"=" border="0" height="208"  src="web address of image you're linking from"></a></center>


width"64"=


So there you have it. Several simple lines of code to help you make hyperlinks for images on your website or blog.

Cheers!!!


AM   :)

Monday, January 23, 2012

BICHOK Monday


I've been busy the past couple of weeks updating/revamping my bookcovers, and I believe I'm finally caught up for now.

Time to jump back on the writing bandwagon and get some serious writing done on this Regency Novella. I would like to get it up and live by Valentine's Day, but it's going to take some doing. I already have the title and the cover is made (yay!).

Here are my writing goals for the week:

*  Write 4000 words on novella.

*  Write blurb.

*  Write techno-article for blog and newsletter.

*  Check on status of the online class I'm supposed to teach in February.

*  Maybe write a little on a short story (just to see if I can work on two projects at once).

*  Dig out project notebook on Tyler's story.

Busy week ahead!!!

Happy Writing!!!


AM   :)

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

New Regency Covers





As you can see, I'm also revamping/upgrading my Regency covers. The other ones were okay, but whenever they were on those bestseller lists, they seemed to stick out like a sore thumb.












Now, my new and improved Regency covers can stand proudly with all the rest. It's pretty difficult to find good photos for historical books. I searched through literally hundreds of pictures before I found the perfect ones.







I really like the new covers. I think they're sexier and more romantic. Don't you?









Happy Reading!!!

Anne Marie   :)

Monday, January 09, 2012

BICHOK Monday






We're having a very rainy day and Monday, but I'm not letting it get me down. (cue The Carpenters). We still need lots of rain to make up for the horrible drought we've been having.

Anyway, I jumped back onto the writing wagon this morning and read and edited the rest of my Regency Novella that I want to finish before Valentine's Day. I also searched for new art work for my revamped Regency bookcovers.

Here are my writing goals for the week:

*  Write the next chapter in Portrait and get back in the writing groove.

*  Redesign book covers.

*  Reload The Viscount book with deleted links.

*  Write a techno-challenge blog post.

*  Write and write some more.

Happy Writing!!!


AM  :)