Welcome to my Blog

Welcome to my blog, where I share my love of books and anything bookish, including my own novels every now and then, but mostly I share **Book Blog Tours** **Author Features** **Guest Posts** **Book Blitz's** **Give-Aways** and **Competitions**

Thanks for visiting ~ Bella x

Monday, 28 May 2012

Just a Little Tease...

I've got a new Saturday Showcase planned.

Ah, I hear you say, what are you going to feature this week? 

Well my fellow bloggers and followers, have I've got a treat in store for you and it involves:

A Real Life Priestess and Druids

I'm not saying anymore, but come back on Saturday to find out more.

Until then...

Bella x

Saturday, 26 May 2012

Saturday Showcase with Guest Author Rachel Hunter

I am delighted to feature my latest Guest Author on this seductive Saturday, so without further adieu

I take great pleasure introducing:

 

A Llathanal Annal

 

Empyreal Fate

 

by

 

Rachel Hunter




Published by: Hydra Publications
Release Date:  22nd April 2012
Paperback and Kindle Editions

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Book Blurb:

 
Filled to the brim with forbidden love, an ancient evil, and a nation in disrepair, Empyreal Fate is a tale of riveting bravery and mortal corruption.

The land of Llathala lingers on the brink of war between men and elves, a dark history surrounding each race. Stirred by tensions of the land, a shadow of the past reemerges, taking precedence in reality and consuming the very soul of mans' mortal weakness. Darrion, the son of a poor laborer, is ensnared in a hostile world, forced to choose between loyalty to his king or the counsel of the elves.
 
Yet Fate has other plans in store, tying his course to Amarya, an elven royalblood of mysterious quality and unsurpassable beauty. But this forbidden connection incites betrayal from members of their own kin, marking them as traitors to the crown. In a land torn asunder, only Fate's decree can allow such love to coexist with an ancient enmity.
Behold: A Llathalan Annal: Empyreal Fate - Part One.

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Author Bio:

 

Born in 1993, Rachel Hunter has always been fascinated with words and the intricate way in which they combine. Since a child, she has been an avid writer, winding vibrant tales and elaborate stanzas on folded bits of paper.

As the years passed, her love of words never died; her adoration for reading fared no equal. Always with her nose in a book, Rachel took fondly to works spanning all genres. Yet it was the compelling grasp of fantasy and science fiction that wrenched her fascination above all.

In March of 2012, Rachel published her first short story with Trestle Press, titled, "Perfect Nothing", which recounted her harrowing relationship with an eating disorder and was also fueled by her passion for psychology. But her writing does not end there.

 

While currently pursuing a degree in psychology and in the medical field at the University of Oklahoma, she aspires also to illuminate the creative spark of eager readers. In her desire to incite intrigue, she is simultaneously exploring new worlds and creating vast empires of her own. "Empyreal Fate" is only the first in her Llathalan Annal series. Indeed, it is only the beginning.


 

 

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Connect with Rachel Hunter on the Web

 

Click any of the links below:








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I hope you all enjoy this fantastic new novel, so until the next Saturday Showcase...

Bella xx

Sunday, 20 May 2012

OK... I'm sorry...

OK guys, I'm sorry, shame on me *BLUSH* I've been slack *BLUSH AGAIN*  and not posted for a couple of weeks!  Forgive me please? Pretty please!

But the good news is:-  I've got quite a few authors lined up for book features over the coming weeks, so that makes up for my lack on the front-line, as I've been very busy working behind the lines to bring you a veritable selection of exciting new novels and authors.

I won't name names yet, but just to let you know it's going to good and a nice cross-section too.

So stay tuned and I'll be back this week with my first feature.

Hope you have a great day

Bella xx

Saturday, 5 May 2012

Networked Blog ~ Followers Unite ~ Following Me Following You!

Good Morning to you all

As I was surfing the www yesterday I came across the Networked Blog Site and very interesting it is.  It means that when you can't find that pesky follow button on Bloggers Pages, and they have the Networked Blog Widget, you sign up there instead.  Awesome, so I just had to get one.

While we are talking about networking, I saw a couple of other Bloggers had a really great idea: You Follow Me and I'll Follow You!  With that in mind, I am following their marvellous example, so:

 If you follow me, I'll follow you

Tres simples!

Let's get audience building and if you use my juicy little Grab Button on your Blog, I'll use yours here and if you don't have a juicy little Grab Button I can let you know how to make one, just leave me a comment.

Sounds like a deal to me!

Let's get hooked up

Bella xx

Thursday, 3 May 2012

Guest Post by Author Desiree Finkbeiner





Welcome to our special guest author Desiree Finkbeiner writer of the stunning Morning Star novel
Book #1 in The Ethos Series.











10 ways to market your book by Desiree Finkbeiner

For an author, getting published is an accomplishment to be marked as one of life’s greatest milestones. But what most authors don’t seem to have a handle on, is how to market their work. Writing is the easy part, and getting published isn’t terribly hard either… given that the writer finds a publisher who recognizes marketable quality in their writing.

But let’s face it, most authors are going to be ignored by the huge publishing houses that can afford to assign a personal publicist for each author. Independent publishing and small presses are finding it harder and harder to earn their keep in the highly competitive market of literary entertainment. Writing and publishing is the easy part, but how do you compel people to buy your book?

I earned a degree in commercial art with a strong emphasis in business and marketing. But the market changes on a daily basis, and the virtual world is transforming the industry by leaps and bounds. What are some ways you can get your book into the hands of readers?

First and foremost, once you’re published, don’t expect your book to sell itself, and don’t expect your small press to do everything for you. They simply can’t. If you’re reading this article, you’re probably like me, eager to make your writing career a success, and willing to do your part to make sure you see more than a few digits on your bottom line.

Here are 10 marketing ideas that may help

1. If no one knows who you are, no one will buy your book. Get out there! The world has gone to social media so that’s where you need to be too. So get off your rump and start opening as many social media profiles as possible. Luckily, many of them have applications that link together so you spend less time updating and more time writing. Example: You can link your Facebook fan page to your Twitter account so it automatically reposts everything from your fan page to your Twitter account. There are also software applications available that link multiple social media accounts in much the same way, including rss feeds from your blog to auto post to other sites like Goodreads and Amazon Author Central etc. You’ve got to get your updates to your readers, wherever they are online. Since everyone favors different sites, it’s important to use as many as possible.

2. Once you get your social networking accounts set up, what do you do with them and how can you make them effective marketing tools without coming off as ‘spammy’? It’s as simple as this: engage your followers. Try to avoid plugging your book in every post you publish. People will get bored with it and unfollow your page when it becomes redundant. Give them something interesting to “like”. Offer content that caters to their interests and you’ll keep them coming back to see what’s new.

3. That being said, how to you get fans and followers? The first thing you can do is invite friends and family to ‘like’ or ‘follow’ your page. That will give you a start, but you’ll run out of new likes really fast if you’re not actively seeking to grow your network. First off, DON’T SPAM. It’s bad cyber karma, and people will block you if do it. Instead, as mentioned above, offer something to people that compels them to follow. Some examples: free giveaways for the first fan to send 10 new likes to your page…. And let’s not forget the golden rule! Do unto others as you’d have them do unto you. Follow other people’s pages. You’d be surprised how many people are willing to follow you back because you followed them first. Remember, just because they may not support you directly, doesn’t mean their likes don’t matter. On the internet, Viral exposure is important. The more feeds and lists your content appears on, the more new faces you will be exposed to through extended networks.

4. Blogging. Keeping a blog is a great way to scratch the backs of others while growing your own exposure. Remember, if you seek to help others first, it always come back around to work in your favor too. By offering guest posts or guest features on your blog, you are not only keeping your blog interesting for your current followers, but you’re increasing potential traffic because whoever you feature may promote the feature, sending new readers to your blog. They might take the time to browse your site while they’re there, especially if you update your blog regularly with new content. A catchy banner ad for your book or product at the top of your blog is a great way to increase awareness without being pushy. Viewers who are visiting for your guest post, will also see whatever else you have posted in the blog. So make your banners attractive yet subtle enough to not seem like a shameless self-promotion campaign.

5. Ad campaigns. I know, I know. Your budget sucks. Mine too. But some times ad campaigns are worth the investment. Most social networks have their own banner ad campaigns available where you can set your budget and ‘per click’ price. I’ve run ads on Facebook, Goodreads, Google Adwords, eBay and a few others. I saw the best results when I stuck to a strict target market. The more you can narrow your target market down, the more effective your advertising campaign will be. So if you’ve only got $25 to spend, you’ve got to make sure the right people are clicking your ads. By assuming that your Paranormal Fantasy novel would get the best exposure by selecting all age groups in all regions, you’re making an expensive mistake. Try limiting it to women readers, age appropriate demographics, within regions where English is the dominant language, and you’ll reduce the risk of some 12 yr old boy who likes action figures and puppies from clicking on your steamy romance and running up your bill.

6. Book Trailers. Take it from the movie industry, movie trailers sell movie tickets! Book trailers sell books! Human beings are the most responsive when you can appeal to their senses. A good book trailer stimulates visual and audible response whereas reading and banner ads are only visual. More information and emotion can be conveyed in a 1 or 2 minute trailer than by reading a synopsis alone. It’s less work for the reader, and more compelling. If you don’t have a book trailer, you’re missing out on a vital marketing opportunity to increase book sales.

7. Blog tours. A blog tour is a virtual tour designed to do one thing: increase exposure. Each blog you visit has its own loyal followers that are potential customers. Again, by offering content to other blog that interest readers, you’re engaging readers. Most importantly, offer something that will benefit your blog host whether is be a helpful guest post on a topic that benefits their readers, or offering a giveaway in exchange for a feature on your new book. People love free stuff, and bloggers love interesting content, so why not help each other out?

8. Book reviews. Never underestimate the power of reviews. They sell books to other readers who may be hard to impress, and nothing sells product better than customer testimonials. If you’re having trouble getting your readers to post reviews, offer them an incentive: free review copies of your book, for example, or sneak peak excerpt from the next installment in a series etc. You’ll need as many reviews as possible posted to Amazon, Goodreads and other sites catering to books. Also, reviews on blogs may compel new readers to buy your book as well.

9. Pass-along cards. Business cards, flyers or post cards. Always have them on your person. You never know who you’re going to meet when you’re out and about. Those word-of-mouth one-on-one personal contacts are golden opportunities to grow your following. It could be as simple as striking up a conversation with the clerk at the grocery store. Build relationships with the people in your community. It’s always best first to let the people you meet talk about themselves first, be genuinely interested in what they have to say so they will feel that you’ve put value on their experiences, then tell them it was wonderful meeting them and give them a pass along card which promotes your book/social page/website with a polite smile. Chances are, they will take the time to visit your site and check out your content because you took the time to visit with them. I’ve sold a lot of books with this method, and they will in turn, tell their friends about you.

10. Free Samples. You’ve seen them, the little sample tables at grocery stores that give away free food samples to get you hooked on their product. Free samples sell products, it’s proven, and it sells books too. Offer free review copies to readers and bloggers who will publish reviews online. Their incentive to read your book is because it was free, then they will tell their readers and friends about how much they liked your book, which will result in sales. You can also post free excerpt on blogs or forums to get people interested in the story. People are more likely to buy the book if they can sample it first. Free book giveaway promotions also work. Have you ever been to Amazon to download free ebooks from the free kindle page? Those downloads not only raise your Amazon ranks, they result in reviews and getting your book into circulation, which results in more sales. So don’t be afraid to give it away, especially if you have a series. Try giving book #2 away for free. People who download it will have to purchase book #1 to get up to speed on book #2. Or giveaway book #1 to get people hooked on the series. If they liked it, they will come back and buy the other installments.






Desiree's Links

 

Welcome to The Ethos Blog Tour by Desiree Finkbeiner

Morning Star Book #1 in the Ethos Series
Publisher:  Hydra Publications
Release Date: 28th March 2012


Morning Star

Urban Fantasy
    
When a mysterious stranger interrupts Brianna’s mundane routine, her eyes are opened to the dark underbelly of reality… immortal rogues, ancient conspiracies, prophetic revelations, savage tribes, mammoth dragonflies…
    
She’s thrust into a race for her life when Kalen, a warrior from Ethos, discovers that she is harboring a secret… a secret that he’d give his life to protect.
    
There’s just one little problem… they are tempted by a forbidden romance, which threatens to compromise a divinely appointed mission. They are faced with a choice… love eternal, or the end of the world…

Product Description Courtesy of amazon.co.uk


It started with a mushroom, from another world... never before touched by a human hand, until Brianna... but life continued as normal... until a near fatal accident almost a decade later, reveals to Brianna... she's... different...

Unexplained lab results, unusually fast healing, and recent sightings of Jurassic sized dragonflies... What is happening to her?

When a peculiar man delivers her from a violent assault, she becomes enchanted by his heroism and inhuman abilities. Her rescuer, Kalen, is sworn to protect the powerful secret she has yet to realize, from an ancient foe with evil designs...

With the secret exposed, our world is no longer safe. Kalen takes Brianna to Ethos, his home, unprepared for what happens next... An ancient prophecy unfolds and they must make make a choice... Give into their forbidden love, or sacrifice their heart's desire for a chance to save their worlds.
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About the Author


Desiree Finkbeiner attained a bachelor's degree in Graphic Design from Missouri Southern State University, USA (2006) with a heavy background in business, marketing, music and fine art-  She was heavily involved in campus affairs and served actively in several committees focusing on campus entertainment and events.

She performed with musical acts/bands in rock and electronic genres, released seven studio albums, performed in 11 states of the USA and has written hundreds of songs. Her band, Carbon Star, was a finalist for America's popular music channel VH1's "Bands on the Run" reality TV show in 2000. Then she performed with Pointy Teeth until finally leaving the music industry for the quiet life.

She had a scholarship for acting in college though she was not a theater major. Although she no longer performs or focuses on musical/performing arts, she has chosen to shift her talents to other areas that are more conducive to raising a family.

Continuing education is a constant adventure for Desiree with topics of interest ranging from civil and corporate law, history, political conspiracy, homeopathic medicine and spiritual healing. She prefers to read non-fiction, especially on topics that educate and broaden her perspectives on controversial issues.

Desiree has been a successful business owner since the age of 16 and currently operates an extreme sports store with her husband. Running a family business affords her the opportunity to focus on art, writing, and spending time with her family.

She hates television and chose to stop watching at age 14 when it became clear to her how precious time was. She'd rather spend her time creating and accomplishing her aspirations than waste time viewing TV or engaging in other time-wasting activities.

With thousands of completed art works in her archives, most of which appear in private collections worldwide, Desiree hopes to focus more on publishing, marketing and licensing her work so she can leave a legacy behind.




Morning Star is Available from www.amazon.com and www.amazon.co.uk



Wednesday, 2 May 2012

FREE BOOKS on FABULOUS WEDNESDAY!!!

FREE ~ FREE ~ FREE

My Guest author Desiree Finkbeiner has very kindly offered 10 FREE Copies of her Fabulous Novel 'Morning Star ~ Book #1 in the Ethos Series' to my readers! 

The Novel is available for Kindle Download by clicking here:




The Free Download is available at Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk

Courtesy of Hydra Publications

THIS OFFER ONLY LASTS TODAY AND TOMMOROW - DON'T MISS OUT!


There are a few more titles also available in the Giveaway, click on any of the links below and enjoy. 



Gnosis

Heart of the Hunter

Secret

The Heart Denied

The Universal Mirror

Ukishima


So don't miss out on this time limited offer, available only 2nd May and 3rd May.

I hope you enjoy the books and a big thank you to Desiree for this great FREE read and for letting me showcase here!

Bella xx

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