Sunday, August 30, 2015

Tornado Giveaway!!!

80 Authors (including me!) are participating. Here's your chance to get loads of free books AND enter to win prizes!

Author: Mia Epsilon

Read some reviews:

1. Christina Mcclellan
2. Kirsten 
3. Jen 

The Story:

Anna is planning the perfect wedding, but she doesn't anticipate her future mother-in-law's offer of help which translates into take over. Her groom-to-be avoids her and insists their growing problems are just 'bridal nerves'. Worst of all, her best friend, Robin, begins to act strange. Everyone around her has his or her own agenda. What's a girl to do when she begins to realize the perfect life she envisioned is all a lie?
Robin has two great loves in his life: his best friend Anna and his motorcycle. Not one to make a scene, he supports Anna in her plan to marry the wrong man and regrets she can't accept his 'dare devil' lifestyle. But when push comes to shove, he's more than willing to make the necessary sacrifice and prove he is the man she needs.
As the wedding date grows closer and plans shift into high gear, Robin and Anna grow closer and not just as friends. Each must decide what the perfect life truly means while trying to negotiate the maze of wedding plans, secrets, and hidden motives. Will someone be left singing the blues?
You can also buy @

About The Author 

Mia Epsilon 

Mia Epsilon is the author of the 'Weddings by C & C' contemporary romance series featuring a location wedding company and set in Hawaii. The first two books, Take a Chance on Me and Wedding Belle Blues, are available now with the third, fourth and fifth due out later this year. A feisty red head, Mia lives with her enduring hubby in the gorgeous Blue Ridge Appalachian Mountains, USA. She's an avid reader of almost anything and loves to be curled up with a great book. She never misses an episode of Doctor Who or Sherlock and happily suffers coffee and chocolate addictions. She can most often be found at her computer spinning new stories or in a quiet padded nook with her e-reader.

Find her @
Website | Twitter | Facebook

Now for the Rafflecopter: Gather as many points as you want to. The more points you get, the more you have a chance to win it all. Show your love for books.. Tweet, Like and Spread the Word... Thank you for being a Reader... You keep the Authors motivated... This is our way of saying a Thank you :) 

Sunday, August 23, 2015


This Review is my personal opinion. I was not paid for nor compensated in any way for this review.

First off, this is a MASSIVE huge book. I won the paperback version at a conference and couldn't believe how big it is. The paperback version is over 700 pages long! Most anthologies are short, short stories; these stories are almost 100 pages each and have fully developed story lines and characters.There are also NO cliffhanger endings or irritating 'this is a prequel you have to buy more' stories, either.  I love the concept: Each story is based on a song from Duran Duran, the wildly popular musical group  from the 80's and 90's and while each story has a song title and references the music or some of the lyrics, the reader isn't 'beaten over the head' with the theme.

There's a mix of stories and truly something here for ever reader. There's paranormal, contemporary, M/M, menage, every day heroes and heroines, and hysterically funny secondary characters. The sex scenes are steamy, steamy, steamy, but fit; there's no 'sex for sex sake', and each scene fits the plot. There's no historical but I would definitely put this in the 'romantic erotic' category.

A bit of a funny incident: I was reading this book while waiting for a flight at the airport, and the lady beside kept leaning closer and closer until she was all but hanging off my shoulder and telling me to 'read faster and turn the page'. I didn't get mad, though it was a bit disconcerting, but let her finish the story and then give my book back.

My personal favourites were 'Hungry like the Wolf' for it's OMG twist at the end and 'Rio' (which also happen to be my 2 favourite Duran Duran tunes) for its second chance at love theme. 'New Moon on Monday', 'Girls on Film' and 'Love Voodoo' also receive kudos for keeping me turning the pages quickly and leaving house chores undone because I couldn't put the book down! Which is probably why the name of the book, Come Undone, fits so well!

'Ordinary World' really tugs at your heartstrings. 'Before the Rain' gives a haunting view of what the world might someday be. 'Wild Boys' and 'Union of the Snake' aren't my genre (M/M) but still had well done plots.

If you are looking for short stories with a bit more 'meat' and substance to them, plus a bit of 80's memories, this is definitely the book for you. Even if you don't know (GASPS, how can you not know???) Duran Duran or their music, you will like these well plotted and written tales.


Thursday, August 20, 2015

Which Genre Sells Best in Self/Indie Publishing?

My amazing author friend DEVIKA FERNANDO posted this article first on her FaceBook page and gave me permission to report here on my blog. This is a great article!

 Self-Published Genres

You’re at the starting gate, ready to self-publish your book. But how do you know if you have a winner? While some genres seem to enjoy unbridled success when self-published, others fall behind in the race for sales. Take a look at the top-selling genres in self-publishing to find out where your book fits in:

Win: Romance, Sci-Fi, Fantasy

Romance, science fiction, and fantasy books are the best-suited for self-publishing. In fact, half of the e-book bestsellers in the romance, science fiction, and fantasy genres on Amazon are self-published! Readers of these genres are more likely to share recommendations via blogs and community forums, and their clearly defined interests make it easier for authors in these genres to target their book sales marketing efforts.
Of these three genres, romance books make up a whopping 40% of the market share on Amazon e-book sales. And if you think romance sells so well because it’s erotica—not true. Only 1.2% of Kindle sales are erotica. The romance genre actually covers many other types of romance novels—even Christian romance. You’re in good company if you love writing romance novels, whether they’re steamy or not!

Place: Mystery, Thriller, Crime

Of the Top 100 mystery and thriller Kindle sales, 11% are self-published books. While not as popular as the romance genre, self-published mystery, thriller, and crime books still sell extremely well.

Show: Nonfiction

Nonfiction books are also good choices for self-publishing. They make up a smaller percentage of the market, but readers are often happy to pay more for a nonfiction book. So even if you sell fewer books than fiction writers, you’ll still make a decent profit because you can charge more for each copy.
Self-published literary fiction doesn’t sell as well as genre fiction does: This category makes up only 2% of all Amazon e-book sales.

So is every non-romantic book destined to fail?

Don’t let generalizations about which books sell best discourage you from self-publishing your book, whether it’s a romance, a mystery, or even a western! It’s important to stay true to your unique writing style and vision—forcing yourself to write only for the market will show in your work, and disappointed readers will notice. Instead, you might want to consider adding a little more romance to your mystery novel to create some crossover appeal, or querying agents for a little longer before starting down the self-publishing route.
Remember: For any genre, the key to successfully selling your self-published book is to market it effectively. Even traditionally published books can end up in last place if they’re not marketed well. And in today’s publishing industry, more traditional publishers are putting the responsibility for marketing a book onto the author’s shoulders.

QUESTION: In which genre do you write?

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Making the Most of a Conference

All views stated here are my own personal opinion and do not endorse nor reflect the thoughts and views of any other person or organization.

I just attended a conference and have returned with loads of new books and new author friends, plus a few reader friends who share my love of all things written. I did notice some things along the way which I plan to incorporate into the next conference I attend.

1. Socialize: It's hard for me (and many authors I know) to meet new people because we are, at heart, introverts. I'm shy (okay, people who know me, stop that laughing) until someone gets to know me, then I will talk your ears off. So it's hard for me to go up to a group of strangers and just start talking. BUT... The people in that group may be just as shy as you are! So be shy together and perhaps make new friends.

2. Push Your Comfort Zone: This pairs with the above. Attend a panel you really want to go to that isn't necessary your 'comfort' area. Always wanted to see what fetishes in BDSM are? Attend the panel! And speak up, too. There really are no 'dumb' questions. Seriously, there aren't. I found when I asked a question (heart pounding because people were looking at me) several others in the room nodded. They had the same question or one similar. I pushed my comfort zone to speak up, but it gave me the answer to something I really wanted to know.

3. Try Something New: Whether it's an author you've never read, speaking to people you don't know, trying a new food or attending a panel, go for the new and not the same. the only way to find a new favorite is to try it. This also pushes me to 'get out of the rut' and do something I may love...or not. The main goal is to try.

4. Don't Complain...Find a Solution: I heard several different negative things about the food, or the panels, the hotel, etc. Some things we can't change. Some we can. Don't like the food? Go find a restaurant close and eat what you like. Didn't like the panel? Find another! The hotel is way expensive? Of course it is! Try being a 'celebrity' in your mind and just enjoy the things we don't have everyday.

5. Get Out and Walk: I made the joke I walked 2,000 miles.(And have the song in my head to prove it)  And of course it felt like I did! We walked to the aquarium, saw the Olympic park and the torch holder, found a lovely 50's style diner, and a mystery dinner theater I would love to try! All from just going out and walking around.

Remember, a conference, like anything else in life, depends on what you put in on what you receive back.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Can EVERY Character Be Redeemed?

 The following post is expressively MY own opinion. I do not endorse any company or person with this post and state my own humble opinion.

As writers, we face the sometimes half impossible journey into making characters who 'leap from the screen and page' and are 'so real he/she could be your best friend'. As readers, we don't want the same ole same old character (good lord, that's boring) and we want to feel immersed in the story to the point we escape real life.

But what makes a 'bad' character good? How bad is too bad? And can EVERY character be redeemed?

I ask this because my lovely friend Jen Bradlee mentioned to me a controversy in the RITA Awards this year. The RITA Awards are, in case you didn't know, voted and judged on by published authors for published authors and sponsored by The Romance Writers of America (RWA). So groups of your peer and fellow writers vote on the books they feel is 'Best' in dozens of categories.

RITA Awards

The controversary involves a book nominated for the award in which the Hero is a Nazi Death Camp Supervisor and the Heroine is a Jewish almost inmate he rescues. I have NOT read the book so I refuse to comment on the theme or storyline since I really can't. But many groups felt this sort of plotline was in very bad taste and did not want it nomintaed for a top award. It didn't win the award, but it was nominated.

Now, to be honest, nominations are announced weeks ahead of the actual awards ceremony, so it was known the book was up for a top award. The controversy has erupted in the last few days, although the nominations and acual awards were weeks ago (the RITA award was given in late July)

The story is here for anyone who wishes to read it:

So CAN every character be redeemed? Should every Character be redeemed?

I'm a believer in the human spirit. A big believer. I want to think everyone can be redeemed even as my head knows some don't WANT to be redeemed. When I write a book with a 'bad' character, it's because each one of us has the capasity and I dare say every day choice to choose what our actions might be. We CHOOSE to be 'good' or 'bad'. It's not our character so much as our choices which define us. So my characters, good or bad, choose the way they want to be and make decisions based on their choices and vice versa.

In Wedding Belle Blues, I had one reviewer comment she didn't like the fact certain characters didn't "get theirs in the end". I had a whole blow up, knock down, drag it out scene planned, but Anna, my heroine, gently explained to me this is NOT the way she would handle the scene. I could write what I wanted, but I wasn't true to Anna's character planning a huge scene. It's not who Anna is. So I wrote the scene in Anna's way and it works (even without a cat fight...though believe you me, Anna has the ability to be a tiger when her loved ones are threatened, as you will soon read in a future book).

Anna in Wedding Belle Blues

And to be honest...the 'bad' character in Wedding Belle Blues...and there are two... does NOT want to change his/her circumstances. He/She is very happy the way things are. Why change when you are happy? They don't want to be redeemed. And so I didn't try to redeem them.

So can an author 'redeem' a bad character so a reader doesn't feel 'cheated'?

For me, it's the character, just as the person. Does the character WANT to change? Because frankly, I want to lose weight, but if I don't WANT it badly enough, I never will. See the difference? Saying you want to change and then actually DOING something to change are two separate things. If I eat junk food all day and never exercise, I probably won't lose weight even if I say I want to. 

When I have a 'bad' character in a book, (and let's face it, 'bad' is so so broad. What's 'bad' to me may not be 'bad' to you) I make him/her as 'real' as I can. No one is ALL bad nor is anyone ALL good. The surest way for me to metaphorically throw a book across the room is to give me an all bad or all good character. It's lazy, sloppy writing. And I hate it.

Take for instance, the character Loki in The Avengers movie. He's the 'bad guy'. He does some way bad things like killing people, opening a portal for an alien invasion, and trying to take over the world. But one thing I noticed about Loki. He did things for dramatic effect, for the 'grand scale'. And he showed moments of mercy and almost...dare I say it? tenderness, particularly taking to his brother. His character comes through even more so in Thor 2 when he mourns the death of the one person he's always loved (didn't want to give spoilers).

Can Loki be redeemed? Does Loki WANT to be redeemed?

So to redeem a character...don't TELL me why he/she wants to now be good. SHOW me. And make it part of his/her own nature.

I admit, the above mentioned Nazi Hero doesn't sound redeemable. I mean, yes, they were following orders, but millions of people died. Can anyone who helped commit such a horrible act be redeemed? Even with love?

I'm not sure. As a reader, I have strong doubts, based entirely on personal experience and friends who lost relatives in that mass murder. But I'm willing to give a character, just as I give people, the chance to prove to me he/she WANTS to change.

Maybe that's how we redeem ourselves. By wanting to change and then actually doing it. :)

So...what are you thoughts on how to redeem a character or even if one CAN be redeemed.