Happy release day to Kirsty McManus author of I Thought It Was You, the latest release in the Oceanic Dreams series.
Every book in the series is named after a song title. Why did you choose this song for your book?
I actually started out by googling songs that were about mistaken identity, and I Thought It Was You by Herbie Hancock came up. I’d never heard it before, but instantly loved it. It seemed like it would suit a cheesy cruise, but it is also a very cool song for its time. I’ve heard people say Daft Punk must have used him for inspiration.
What song(s) are you currently listening to/loving and why?
I hardly get a chance to listen to my own music lately, because my boys hog Spotify at home and in the car. Thankfully, I don’t mind their taste. My eldest finds a lot of great experimental dance music (because he wants to be a DJ when he’s older) and my youngest loves rock and acoustic stuff (because he wants to be a rock star when he’s older!). One of my favourite songs at the moment is The Comedown by Ocean Alley. We all just saw them at Bluesfest in Byron Bay this year, and I love that a part of that song reminds me of the soundtrack in Labyrinth (my favourite movie as a kid).
Do you have a go to karaoke song?
Haha – yes! I lived in Japan for a year and went out to karaoke all the time with the English teachers I worked with. I always choose Just Lose It by Eminem. I’m not good at it, but it’s fun to pretend I can rap. For something a little more melodic, I sometimes choose All That She Wants by Ace of Base, or I Will Survive by Gloria Gaynor.
If you had to choose your theme song what would it be?
Emotional Rescue by The Rolling Stones. I don’t know about the lyrics, but it is a very cool song to strut around to!
Circle in the Sand is out now - download your copy today and don't forget to read the whole Oceanic Dreams series!
1. Every book in the series is named after a song title. Why did you choose this song for your book?
My book didn’t have a title. I hadn’t even considered one yet. One day while making dinner I had my Google Mini playing me an 80s playlist. “Circle in the Sand” by Belinda Carlisle came on. I had her cassette tape (yes, cassette tape) and loved that song. It just felt like the perfect title for my Oceanic Dreams book.
2. What song(s) are you currently listening to/loving and why?
I am always listening to James Arthur. I love his song “Say You Won’t Let Go” and his newest, “Falling Like the Stars” is like a follow up to it. I am also obsessed with “Dynasty” by MIIA and most songs by NF. I don’t usually listen to Ariana Grande but I really like her new one “Break Up With Your Girlfriend, I’m Bored.”
3. Do you have a go to karaoke song?
Um, no. I don’t do karaoke. Well, I shouldn't say that. I would do karaoke in my parent’s basement with only a few people around. They have a big karaoke collection. I don’t have a specific song I sing, though.
4. If you had to choose your theme song what would it be?
Right now I would have to say “High Hopes” by Panic! At the Disco. I honestly have heard the song so much that I tend to change the channel now when it comes on. But I love the message and it’s very relatable.
In the second of our Musical Monday posts with authors of the Oceanic Dreams series let's chat with Holly Kerr, author of I Saw Him Standing There.
I'm currently loving the new Shawn Mendes song, If I Can't Have You and the Ed Sheeran/Justin Bieber I Don't Care. But I keep going back to the soundtrack of The Greatest Showman - just love it!
Do you have a go to karaoke song?
I haven't done karaoke in a long time, but I think I'd go with ABBA or maybe Dolly Parton. I've been listening to a lot of Dolly lately and I think I could pull off Here You Come Again.
If you had to choose your theme song what would it be?
Dancing by Myself. Because that's what I do! Give me an empty kitchen and some loud tunes, plus a glass of wine and I'll all set!
I Saw Him Standing There get your copy today
This stowaway sets sail for love!Small-time con artist Siggy needs to get out of town fast. When she’s offered tickets on the legendary Oceanic Aphrodite, Siggy jumps at the chance to get away. A week on a luxury cruise ship, with a suitcase full of clothes and all expenses paid? Yes, please! The only catch is that she has to pretend to be someone else.
No problem. Siggy has no intention of getting close enough anyone to discover her secrets.
But this is the Oceanic Aphrodite and love is in the air. When Siggy sees assistant cruise director Will taking tickets, Cupid’s arrow hits the target. Luckily, Will’s too busy smiling at her to check out her fake passport because he’ll toss Siggy off the ship if he finds out about the scam.
Onboard, dolphins and cameras and runaway ferrets bring Siggy and Will together. The more time they spend together, the more Siggy wants to tell him the truth.
Cupid’s arrow has struck deep but can Siggy stop running?This novella-length romantic comedy is the first book in the Oceanic Dreams series
Books in series:
I Saw Him Standing There by Holly Kerr
Time of My Life by Laura Heffernan
Circle in the Sand by Tracy Krimmer
I Thought it Was You by Kirsty McManus
I Will Follow Him by Holly Tierney-Bedord
Take a Chance on Me by Delancey Stewart
Shut Up and Dance With Me by Monique McDonell
The Best of You by Sophie-Leigh Robbins
Every Book in the new Oceanic Dreams series I'm a part of is named after a song - let's get to know Holly Tierney Bedford author of I Will Follow Him, Book 5 in the Series.
Riptide by Vance Joy (what a great video!)
Motion Sickness by Phoebe Bridgers
Home by Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros
Wish I Knew You by the Revivalists
Pumped Up Kicks by Foster the People
lots of different songs by the Lumineers
lots of old songs by Stevie Nicks (I never get tired of her)
Do you have a go to karaoke song?
I've only sung karaoke a time or two as part of a group. I'm really better off being a spectator.
If you had to choose your theme song what would it be?
That changes on an hourly basis, but right now I'll go with Live in the Moment by Portugal. The Man
I Will Follow Him there is available on pre-order be sure to get your copy here
It's release week for Laura Heffernan's Book Time of My Life, Book 2 in the Oceanic Dreams Series so the authors are running this giveaway. Be sure to enter
The week that was in the year of saying yes
First off I'm not going to lie- I didn't love 2018 from an author perspective. I set some lofty goals and I fell short. There were lots of reasons for this that include the fact that even I need to sleep and as much as I love my author life it's not worth missing out on real life to make it work. Still, I was bummed at the end of the year. 2017 was my best year in terms of sales and goals and I felt like I was gaining traction and it all slipped away in 2018.
Fast forward to 2019 and I set new ambitious goals that included launching a book a month - I haven't quite done that - but I will have published twelve times by the end of 2019 so we'll take it. In order to make that happen I said yes late last year to a lot of projects.
I said yes I'll try and get a on board with Sweet Promise Press when they launched last year which meant I had No Time For Temptation ready to roll in January.
I said yes to joining the Coffee Talk on the Board Walk multi-author series and yes to the Oceanic Dreams series as well. Originally that had me releasing my Oceanic Dreams book - Shut Up and Dance With Me in May and my Cinnamon Bay book with Coffee Talk in June. Then the Oceanic Dreams book got bumped to August and we added a novella to the Cinnamon Bay series.
So that meant that the novella Love on the Boardwalk, launched this week along with the first book in the Oceanic Dreams series. That was a lot of partying and promoting for both books.
You know what is awesome about being in a multi author series? Everyone has their own special talents that they bring to the table from graphic design, building websites, book formatting or book trailers. It's so nice to be part of a team and not figuring all that stuff out all on my own.
I'll be featuring all the amazing authors here on my blog and on my Facebook page so you can see how great they are for yourselves.
So that means we have two gorgeous book trailers which I will share over the next week. First Coffee talk on the Boardwalk and then Oceanic Dreams later this week.
Some of you may know I've set up a small business GetSocialWriteNow to help other authors on their path to publishing - I've learned a lot on my journey and I hate it when I see people struggling when there's no need. I've always been happy to help people and I know most authors are very generous with their time. Building an author platform takes quite a bit of know how so I started sharing mine,
Anyway, part of promoting this, and books as well is getting out there and talking about what I can do. As part of this strategy when I was asked to be on a panel at the WriteNow! Festival in Lake Macquarie I said yes. I had no idea it would end up being the same week that all of this was happening and I was a little overwhelmed mid-week thinking about it.
As it turned out it was the perfect way to spend the day - surrounded by authors and aspiring writers and librarians and books. It was actually a really fun and joyous experience I'm glad I said yes to.
So that's my week on review. If you want to support the projects I have said yes to you can see all my books here on Amazon.
"Delicious Disasters" by Isabella Louise Anderson
Blurb: When Tessa Markham’s bookstore gets bought out, she is forced to face an uncertain future. After her best friend challenges her to start baking, she accepts—even if the last time she baked wasn’t what she would call a delicious success.
After a small kitchen fire, Tessa’s life begins to change. She finds encouragement from a sexy fireman, agrees to a questionable ruse to help another business owner with a complicated situation, and needs to be there for her best friend now more than ever.
Can a delicious disaster lead to a new future and a successful baking career?
**Click HERE to add "Delicious Disasters" to your Goodreads list!
About the author: Isabella Louise grew up with a book in her hand, and to this day nothing has changed. Aside from writing, she focuses her time on featuring other authors on her blog, Chick Lit Goddess, along with sharing book reviews. Isabella Louise is also a member of the Romance Writers of America.
She lives in Dallas with her husband, enjoys spicy Indian and Mexican food, margaritas, and red and white wines. She loves spending time with family and friends, and cheering on the Texas Rangers. When Isabella Louise isn’t working on her next release, her attention is also on her Scentsy business, where she’s a consultant.
Today I thought I'd ask myself the Top 5 questions I get asked about my writing life.
1. How's your writing going?
This is the question people who know I write but don't really know about the details ask. It's the most common question I get.
It's going fine. I have another book out next month and my last release was okay although I didn't promote it properly. It was a novella and I don't think people really want novellas from me. My January release No Time For Temptation went well and readers are giving it great reviews which makes me happy.
2. When is the next book out?
This is the question from my friends who read and love my books.
Girlfriend, I'm doing my best here. It takes a lot longer to write a book than read a book you know. I'm working really hard here and but you'll have books in April, May, June so don't panic. There will be lots to read. I do really appreciate that you love my books and your support makes me cry all the happy tears.
3. Can I get it in paperback?
Asked by lots of non e-reading friends.
You know I used to do paperbacks and they just don't sell unless you have a book launch or a signing but I have No Time For Temptation in paperback and it will be live on Amazon soon. I'm also ordering duets of the Upper Crust series soon, I promise. Here's an example!
4. How do you write so fast?
This is usually asked by other authors who don't write as quickly as I do.
Firstly, I have had years of practice at being quick at turning work around in my day job where I've basically written all day for a living. Secondly, I'm not bad at time management in general so I'm really good at using 15 minute increments to get stuff done - a Facebook post, some emails, or some behind the scenes activity. Thirdly, I know my best times of day for creativity and it's good to work these out for yourself. (Mine are 10am -12noon , 2-4pm, and 5-6.30pm) If I can get two one hour blocks in these times I can get 2-3,000 words of a draft done. I try and do a minimum of 1,000 words a day. That adds up. Fourthly, by writing every day I can dive straight back in where I left off which saves time and backtracking. Finally, i enjoy writing (editing and promoting not so much) but I do it because I like it and that makes it easier.
There is no correct pace to write at. It depends on a lot of things. I like to release regularly because as an indie romance author that helps me with sales, visibility and the pesky Amazon algorithms. Also I read quickly so I understand that kind of reader who wants to read a series back-to-back. That means I need to write quickly and it's important to me so I make time for it.
Also I don't watch TV hardly at all (except the odd cooking show) . I haven't seen a movie since January 2018 and I don't play sports or have a time consuming hobby. As does meal preparation (we don't eat take-away) and planning on the home front. Oh yes, and my house isn't company ready 95% of the time. You'd be amazed how much time that frees up.
5. How do you come up with your ideas?
Lots of people ask this.
Ideas are not an issue for me. I have books planned out and so many things I'd love to write that I'll never get to. The characters appear before me and then I want to tell their stories. Picking the right stories in the right order is the challenge for me as is deciding what people would like to read. I'll have a plan and then get distracted by shiny new things. Staying focused is the challenge.
If you have any question please feel free to ask me in the comments below.
It can't be just me who is amazed we're into March already. Still I'm pulling on my boots and marching forward because that's the kind of year I have planned for myself. 2018 was kind of a tough one and I'm ready to fave down all the challenges this year brings. I'm working on my book business like the crazy, coffee loving maniac I am.
At the risk of sounding like some kind of self-help guru there's really no one who can get this stuff done for me but me so I just need to get on with it. Moaning and lamenting about the many challenges of being an author in 2019 is really just a big old waste of my very precious time and energy.
Today I sent out my newsletter, if you're on the list you'll see that I'm part of an exciting multi-author project launching in the US Spring. Check out the pretty cover for Love on the Boardwalk, the novella that will launch the series. There'll be six books out in this series over the summer, including on from me in June.
Here is the Blurb:
She’s hiding a broken engagement.
He’s concealing his true birth heritage.
They’ll have to trust their hearts even if they’re sure love is a lie.
Now that Eva Halloway is back in her hometown of Cinnamon Bay, she has one full plate with the grand re-opening of her newly inherited boardwalk cafe and a broken engagement to hide from the town gossip mill. First, Eva must bury her bruised heart, and second, she must ban the ridiculous Cafe Amour drink from the menu. But, sexy stranger, Mac Jenssen strolls into her cafe and before she knows it, they’ve both sipped on the legendary love concoction. By the end of the day, Eva is up to her neck in a feud with a trio of matchmaking little old ladies and wondering if she can trust herself to help Mac uncover his past.
Macklin Jenssen arrives in Cinnamon Bay to search for the family who gave him up for adoption. Instead, he finds Eva, a legend about love, and a lighthouse with ties to his past. Plus a spiced drink that is out of this world delicious. He hasn’t bargained for any of it, although he isn’t saying no to love. In fact, the more he comes to know Eva, the more he’s considering a permanent move. Too bad she’s made up her mind about him, and it isn’t looking good. But, if he wishes to unravel the mystery of his birth parents, he’s going to need Eva’s help.
With town gossip and crazy bat-wielding locals, Eva and Mac face an uphill battle. It might be opposites attract or even fate, but they will have to learn to trust in each other and the power of love. Delve into a new world of romance, mystery, and magic in the quirky coastal town of Cinnamon Bay, North Carolina.
We have a whole interactive Facebook community working with us to build the town of Cinnamon Bay by naming all the parts of the town. Click below of you would like to join us.
Don't forget I've already launched two books in 2019 - if you haven't read them yet be sure to download your copies today!
FlightBound is a fun, fast read set between Sydney and Brisbane and No Time for Temptation is my contribution to the No Brides Club series. It's getting great reviews which makes me super happy.
If you're a fan of my Jewel Sisters series I apologies for making you wait a whole year for a new book. To make up for it I'll be releasing Something to Savor and Something Worth Saving just a month apart starting in March so the wait won't be too long. If you haven't started the series yet then now is the time!
Ann talks Valentine Kisses and Keto cookies
I love cooking and it may come as no surprise that I include this in some of my stories. We’re off to America for a family holiday in May so most of the recipes I’m trying are either sugarless or keto. If I can drop another 3 kilos, I’ll be happy. That way I can eat my way around America and not fret over the extra weight I know I’m going to put on.
Valentine Kisses is the second in the Moore Sisters of Montana and features a hot fireman and a celebrity chef. Bella Moore thought she had everything she ever wanted. The host of a hit reality show, she's at the top of her career. So when her show goes on hiatus for six months and she finally has downtime, she decides to return to her roots and visit her sister in Cherry Lake. What she doesn't expect is to love the town and the temporary chef position she's taken on at the Lake Hotel.
Jake Woods is focused on his son and his job as the local fire chief. Things are moving along nicely until the new chef at the Lake Hotel almost burns the place down. Jake knows that Bella inherited a mess from the chef before her and he's keen to help her.
After weeks of working together in tight quarters, Jake and Bella can't ignore the sparks between them. But Bella's stay in Cherry Lake is only temporary and Jake still hasn't recovered from losing his wife a few years ago. They'll have to decide whether or not the flame between them can survive without the heat of the kitchen.
I’ve signed an agreement with an LA producer who is keen on getting Valentine Kisses made into film which will be incredible exciting. To keep up with progress, you can sign up to my newsletter here www.annbharrison.net and follow the journey with me.
For those that love to cook, here is my latest ‘go to’ for something sweet and diet friendly. Be sure to double the recipe. The first time I made them my daughters attacked them like a flock of hungry seagulls and the grandkids took a bag each to school for snacks. I guess that makes them a family favorite already!
Keto Peanut Butter Cookies
1 cup salted peanut butter
6 ( only used 3) Tbsp sweetener like Stevia
¼ cup toasted almond flour. (I use a mix of almond and coconut and toasted it in a dry pan)
1 large egg.
Mix all together. It will be thick and dense.
Scoop onto baking sheet and press down with a fork in both directions giving it a criss- cross pattern. Bake at 350F for 12-15 minutes. When you take them out of the oven, leave to cool on the baking sheet. They’re very soft but firm up when cool.
Best-selling author, Ann B Harrison has the perfect backdrop for her imagination to run wild, the lush wine growing region of the Hunter Valley in Australia. She alternates her time between writing western romances, romantic suspense and walking her dog, Chilli.
Two kinds of hero make Ann to a mass of nerves. The hot cowboy with a slow sexy drawl (she used to live out in the desert where they were more common than where she lives now) and a man in a kilt. Imagine Jamie Fraser and you’ll understand why. She can’t wait to visit Scotland where she can get her fill of the tartan clad hotties for, um, research purposes, of course.
In the meantime, her dear husband puts up with her talking to her characters and getting lost in worlds only she can imagine as she battles to bring stories to the page for everyone to enjoy.
You can find Ann on Facebook here - https://bit.ly/2UUWaZW
Her website – www.annbharrison.net
Amazon page - https://amzn.to/2sX4wF5