Sunday, November 28, 2010

MY CHRISTMAS LIST (for Novel Works)

Ready for Christmas. Making your list out of everything to have to rush around to grab? Maybe I have an gift idea for you. It's so easy and quick. All you need is your friend or family member's email address. Give an ebook. Worried that your friend or family member doesn't have a Kindle, Ipad, or a Nook. Doesn't matter. Check out Amazon Kindle- they have an easy (and free) application to download to your PC. The link will take you to my book, but you can see what I'm taking about- how easy it is!

All Romance Ebooks you are also able to send the ebook as a gift. I've never sent one from All Romance Ebooks but I've heard good things about it. Again, I'm including a link to All Romance Ebooks

Haven't seen the same thing at Barnes & Nobles, Borders or Fictionwise, but it doesn't mean they don't have some method of sending ebooks as gifts.

The gift giving ebook is nice because it comes with a little card saying whose it too and a personal message if you choose. Check it out!

What I'm doing to help you is posting a whole host of great books to choose from this week! I will be bombarding you with great ideas! Whether its an ebook or hardcopy, books are great gifts! Join me this week on Novel Works. Should be a lot of fun!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

My Christmas Present to Everyone

      Merry Christmas. I hope the holiday season holds joy and happiness for everyone. As everyone else I'm trying to get my act together for Christmas. My first obstacle is my tree. I usually put up my tree today- the Saturday after Thanksgiving. I'm holding off this year for one reason and one reason only- Dexter. Got to figure out how to keep the tree safe. Somehow in my mind I see him tackling it. Should be able to figure out something to protect the tree. I did raise three children with other animals. But Dexter...well, we'll see.
      I'm keeping my fingers crossed that we will add to our little family before Christmas. Been talking to a shelter about another dog. I know you'll probably say two dogs are plenty. You're right, two is plenty, but Dexter is here only half the time. And Max needs another dog (I want another dog). Its all Becca wants for Christmas. So we'll see.
     Now I have an idea that I'm going to present on Novel Works tomorrow. It's give a friend a book for Christmas. It's so easy. I have done it a few times already. It's easy. I got the idea after having lunch with Lyndsay Beth's mother, Judy (lovely lady by the way). I wanted to say a small thank you to her for lunch. I saw Amazon advertising sending ebooks. So I gave it a whirl. It was so so easy! And with Amazon they let you download a kindle to your PC for free if you don't have a kindle. I have seen other places offer it as well such as All Romance Ebooks. I'm certain Barnes and Nobles probably has one along with Borders.
      What I offered to my friends in my chat rooms was an opportunity to promote their books on Novel Works. I'm so excited because I have a wide range of great books! I'm also going to include my recommended authors in on this because they were so nice in letting me spotlight them during the year. I hope everyone can join me this week. Should be fun!
    I have left links below to different websites to show how easy it is to give (funny how its linked to my books, isn't it), but it is easy. Now everyone can find something to enjoy this holiday season!


Sunday, November 21, 2010

Tell me no! Ranting at Thanksgiving?

Dexter, Max, and I wish everyone a wonderful Thanksgiving week! I have felt bad because I haven't included Max in most of my discussion. I have focused on Dexter since he came into the house. Max, though, is thirteen years old and no matter if he is the smartest dog I've ever had, he likes to lay around the house these days. So he doesn't do a lot I could write about, although honestly I think he understands exactly what I tell him. Max is mine (and the rest of the family). Dexter is like my grandchild. Dexter is getting so big now. Max is a lap dog and can jump up and lie in our laps. Dexter thinks he's a lap dog. This could become a problem. Dexter loves to cuddle, but then again he loves everything. He's going to obedience school now. He's learning how to sit and come. He has no problem coming, if only he would wait for the command. And he's learning to stop chewing on things he's not suppose to or at least that's what I'm telling my husband when he noticed the entrance rug shredding at the edges. Did I already tell everyone about the telephone and Dexter bringing me the telephone wire to my bedroom? I wondered why I was writing without interruption. I wish I had a picture of him come wagging in like he did something special. I really wish I could live my life that happy.

I have to apologize for deleting my last blog. I panicked. Really. I thought I might get on the wrong side of reviewers with my opinion. Then a friend of mine told me it was the best blog she had read of mine. It was the truth. I guess that makes for a good read, but in the publishing business we aren't suppose to step on another's toes. The nerve to expect to get a review when a reviewer promised they would do one! Or to expect that when they gave a time table it was on the same time table that most people use. And heaven forbid you ask if its coming. I chatted yesterday with a group. One of the group flat out told me don't go back to them (I haven't unless you count the one that told me she didn't do self-published books. And I argued back in forth that my book wasn't self-published.) But back to the chat group- she said she had known of reviews coming back two years after they were requested.

I have worked endlessly since April to try to network. I have had the absolutely the best time highlighting authors and posting new reviews for authors. I have met the nicest people. And its fun, but the bottom line is that I wanted to establish a foot hold to promote Patriot Secrets. I have the memory of an elephant, truly. I will never forget the kindness of some of the authors I highlighted such as Lindsay Townsend. She in turn let me guest blog. Teresa Mederios said she liked my cover (little things mean alot at times). Cate Masters returned the favor and had me guest blog. Bertena Varney wrote a couple of extremely nice articles on my books. I have had a few other authors offer me guest blogs. Su Halfwerk offered not only a guest blog, but to help with a trailer for me. I shouldn't act like I'm desolate, but I do have a couple of issues that I want to rant about just to make me feel better I suppose.

And it’s not just getting a review! I had business cards made up -very pretty I might add. I gave them out to everyone at work. Gave them to my husband. Excited. I went to check my stats on my website. Now I know how many people usually visit a day. After I gave out my cards which had my website on them besides my blog and email, I had absolutely no hits! None! No one even went to my website. Even my usual number of hits I get disappeared. Did I tell you -NONE? Now its gone back to normal, but can you imagine handing out all these cards, only to discover your hits have gone down!

If it wasn't for the readers' reviews at a couple of places I would be losing it totally. And you can rest assured it isn't my family giving them. I don't think anyone has read it. My sister bought the book. That I know and being the good soul printed it out for everyone so they wouldn't have to bother with the computer. Why would I want everyone to buy a copy when she can print it out??? And I won’t go into my husband’s family which I love dearly too. But the only thing I can reason is that everyone in my family looks upon my writing as a hobby…a whim.

Do other writers have trouble getting their family to read their books? Do they? I don't think so. But in truth, it isn't my biggest concern. This year hasn't been the best. Literally, we have dealt with one thing after another. But it could have been worse. And in that I thank the Good Lord and pray he looks over us in the coming year.

My husband understands. He lives with me. My kids might not have read my book, but they bought it or I bought it for their computers. (they asked and I wasn't going to say no). My doggies know what it means to me. But in reality it’s not what puts food on the table for us. My husband and I work extremely hard at our regular jobs.

I work at a hospital. I have to say I believe I make a decent salary, but in my profession we are under stringent rules we have to follow. First and foremost is patient care. To be professional is a must. To be respectful is without question. So that's my mind set when it comes to being told that a reviewer is going to do a review.

I expect that reviewer to do what they said and do it under the time restrictions they laid out, not me. But once they tell me it will be within a certain time span I do expect it. Being told that reviewer is backed up and it could take two years is unacceptable to my way of thinking when they told me a month. And to be told not to bother them because it will cause me to get a bad name bothers me to no end. Its okay to tell me a lie because...because...why? Because they consider me a nobody. I don't buy it. I don't do my regular job that way. And if they're professional they shouldn't either.

It's called respect. I worked extremely hard on my book. If you don't want to do it, fine. But don't tell me you are and then don't. Don't make me wait around thinking I'm going to have a few reviews coming in. I could have been sending out more requests for goodness sakes.

Do I think I'm going to get anything changed in the publishing field? Of course not. They have survived without my influence for a long time. Now I'm done with the ranting. Made me feel a tad better I suppose. Won't mention reviews again. Too much more to talk about!

So I was talking about Thanksgiving. I am thankful. I'm thankful for my husband and children that I love more than life itself. I'm thankful for my doggies. I'm thankful for meeting Lyndsay Beth this year. I'm thankful I have a roof over my head. I'm thankful for my family in Mississippi who I had such a great week with for my birthday. I'm thankful for my Massachusetts family. I'm thankful that I have to the opportunity to write.

I told my husband not long ago I was going to give it up. He said no you're not. He's right. I can't, not yet at least.

So if anyone is interested in a historical fiction book filled with intrigue and suspense set during the American Revolution- do I have the book for you!

Oh, by the way, hope everyone has a great Thanksgiving!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

ANNOUNCEMENT! Application for book reviewers!


Application for Book Reviewer on small blog- mine!


                     Read Books- lots of them

                    Love to talk about what you read

Have decided to add to my blog. I will give a space for a book review from said applicant to give reviews. I will have no dealings with said review as long as it follows under my guide lines and the turn around time is minimum.


               Could care less about race, age or gender of applicant.

               Could care less about where the applicant lives as long as you have a computer.

               Has to read ebooks.

               Has to show ability to give reviews.

This is the fun part!!!

To show your ability to review give me a short review of either of my books. PATRIOT SECRETS or DREAM WALKER.

Show me you ability to give concise summary of the content.
When I say short review- one to two lines- be creative!
You can leave a comment here on my blog, a message to me on Facebook, harder to do on Novel Works (but if you can fit it in-great!), or email me at

What you get if you win

1) First- to name your review on my blog

2) Second- to write your own little column

3) Third- did I mention there is no pay.

Winner (s)

There can be more than one winner here. If someone is qualified and wants the opportunity- this is what I’m offering.

There doesn’t have to be a winner either. If no one applies or shows the ability to review, there will be no reviews on my blog.

This has no connections to my highlighting and recommending books on Novel Works. Novel Works is mine! But I will post your reviews are up on Novel Works.

Also if you haven’t read Patriot Secrets or Dream Walker and don’t think you will be in the foreseeable future you doing so, I will accept other reviews on other books, but they have to be books I’ve read so I’ll be able to judge your ability to review. There is no pay because I don’t get paid for my opinions. But if you have a business sense about you I don’t have, we can discuss ways of obtaining advertising and other means I’ve seen on other blogs. I just don’t have a clue about those things.
I’m sure I’m missed something here, but at the moment I’m going with it. Let’s have some fun!

To find my books

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Really-How Long is a Month?

Really- for you how long is a month?

For me it depends. Time seems to fly by for most things. Life in general. Moreso as I get older. I remember so well when I was little and Christmas never came around. Now it seems like I blink and its Christmas again. Bills. I pay them and then they're due again. Little Dexter is bigger than Max now. A puppy still, but not quite so little. He's 12 week old! I can't even go to my children. How can I remember so clearly their tiny little faces when they were born as if it was yesterday, yet now they tower over me, ask me for gas money, and say hi as they pass me on their way out the door.

Then why is it that I think the publishing world goes on a different calendar than I do? Ok, some go on a faster schedule. I love the submissions by email that get rejected before my finger leaves the send button. (Note to self- didn't like my user name-change it). But what's worse is the ones that don't get back to you-ever. Of course they cover themselves by saying if you don't hear from us than it didn't suit our needs (like we couldn't figure that one out by ourselves).

I blogged earlier this year about one that kept my submissions forever. I stalked them. I did. The publishing house taught me how to stalk on the internet by twitter, the web, Facebook. I hung on every word. Most submissions are rejected by 4 weeks. The tweet would say. If it goes longer than it means we are giving it considerable consideration. (I'm paraphrasing so shoot me) Acceptance calls should go out today. Rejections by email. I waited- nothing. A few more weeks would go by. For 12 weeks. By that time my book, Patriot Secrets, had been accepted by Wild Child. Being the responsible person that I am, I emailed and tweeted them withdrawing my submission. And that was that, except the next day I got a rejection from them. A rejection after my withdrawal was bad enough, but even after all that time- it came as a dear author letter! (DEAR AUTHOR) - (note to self- don't just change user name- change name- be easier to become Dear Author, won't have to worry with anyone forgetting my name).

Now I'm sitting and waiting for reviews. It's been a month, a little over a month. They promised, so they have to be coming, right? And these are only a small portion of the ones I requested. (I figured out the ones I didn't hear back from aren't going to review my book- all by little self, I might add.)  With my publisher she gave me three weeks notice of release. Not unusual for an ebook. I realize that reviewers have so many request. So- a month. Reasonable. A couple more backed up probably between 2-3 months. Not a problem- better to be able to scatter the reviews, not having them all come out at once. Another said they would let me know when one of there reviewers picked it out of the waiting list.

Did I tell you I'm not patient? A month is a month- right? I want the reviews (I think). Oh, now I'm talking myself out of getting them. I do have a couple of reader reviews. Happy- truly. Feedback was excellent. I love my book. I love writing. Should be okay, except I want to know what the reviewers think. I'm like a kid asking his parents are we there yet. Or watching water boil. As a mature adult I quite understand it takes time and nothing I say or do will cause this process to go any faster.

But as a writer, I would like to get feedback on my work. At times I feel like it will be well after I'm gone before someone discovers one of my old manuscripts and it becomes a International Best Seller worth millions. At least my family can reap the benefits.

Note to Mom- Love ya. Know I do. But reading over this, maybe just maybe you might want to reconsider working toward your best seller before anything happens to you. You do realize that its not manuscripts that are worth millions after a writer dies. It is an artist, Mom. Paintings go up in value after an artist's death, not manuscripts of dead writers.  

Saturday, November 6, 2010

EPIC Finalists

EPIC, Electronically Published Internet CoalitionTM, was established in 1998 to provide a strong voice for electronic publishing. They are an ebook organization. In essence they promote ebooks. They have announce their finalists this year for the EPIC awards- excellence in ebooks. I believe they have several great books to choose from. So this week I will be highlighting some of the finalists on Novel Works. I believe these books show the quality of writing of what ebooks hold.

Authors range from a list of different publishers- Samhain, Ellora's Cave, Whiskey Creek, Wild Child Publishing, Freya's Bower, The Wild Rose, Amber Quill, Cobblestone Press, MLR Press, Cerridwen Press, self-publish authors, and a list of more publishers. My purpose is to show the wide range of excellence. 

As the publishing world changes, ebooks are only going to expand. I can relate to why some people only want to read a book they can hold in their hands. I used to have to write in a notebook and transfer it to my typewriter, then computer. Now, I can't live without my computer. The same with reading a book. I used to have it in my hand, but I have to say I love the convenience of my kindle. I could list off my reasons, but it would be another blog. But being an ebook has nothing to do with the quality of the book. Check out the finalists this year and see what I mean!

Join me this week when I highlight the EPIC finalists on Novel Works. I believe you will see a few familiar books in the mix of finalists. Congratulations to all the finalists! Should be a fun week!

Novel Works!/pages/Novel-Works-by-Jerri-Hines/112059205487095

Friday, November 5, 2010

Readers' Reviews

PATRIOT SECRETS has been out for over a week. Although I expect to start receiving reviews shortly, I haven't gotten any professional reviews back yet. Reviews take time and I was only able to send out my book two weeks before its release. So I have to wait. I found professional reviews can be frustrating when your book is only out as a ebook at the moment. Some places refuse to review ebooks or charge you to do so. Ah the bias at some places!

Does it mean that my book can't be as good as a book in print? Really? That in the scheme of life the larger publishers would never pass on a good book? Well, that may be the case. I tend to doubt it, but the larger publishers didn't pass on my book because they never saw my book. I take that back two did. Both were interested. One I went back and forth for over a month until they decided it needed more revisions. The other publishers never looked at it because I don't have an agent. I don't have an agent because I haven't sold to the larger publishers. A little circle of irony. In truth, Patriot Secrets did need revising. When I came to Marci (publisher at Wild Child/Freya's Bower) she said the same thing. Talk about frustrating- I had already revised it numerous times. But what Marci saw was a simple fix which made the book flow better.

I am proud of Patriot Secrets. It is the book I've always wanted to write. Now, I wait for reviews except...I already have a couple of reader's reviews. They are on Amazon Kindle.

'I was surprised, really happily surprised as I read it. I couldn't put it down. The book was exciting, filled with twist and turns. The author seemed to know her history extremely well. I was able to connect to the characters...' Ruby W.

'I found this book to be very entertaining. It is suspenseful and the characters are likable. I did find it surprising because I wasn't expecting it from an author I've never heard of. It is why I wrote this review. I have never taken the time before, but I would recommend it'...Charlie G.

And it got a 5 rating at All Romance Books. I'm excited because someone enjoys my book! Writing in itself can be frustrating. When you pour your heart and soul into a book, it is nice to get positive feedback. I don't expect everyone to think my book shakes the ground, but it is nice to know that someone appreciates the effort.

In my fantasy world, readers fall in love with my book and make it a best seller. In reality, I know I have to get my book out there for readers to read. It's a formidable job. Advertising takes money. I have an uphill battle to climb. I want to shout just read it! Don't look at it as only an ebook! Pick it up start to read it. It's my job as a writer to keep your attention once you open the book. I ask only to open the book...the rest is mine to own.