Friday, December 30, 2011

Will this be the New Year I'm praying for?


***

I've just been informed that Together for Christmas has been chosen as one of TBR's books of the month...
...so therefore, I need votes please.
It's just a click away...










Together for Christmas...
...is the holiday book you'll want to read this season.
It'll make you laugh and cry, and at the end, it'll make you sigh!!

I've just gotten a wonderful 5 star review from TBR - Goodreads
and would be proud for you to read it.

Another great review from Sizzling Hot Reviews


Night Owl Choice

 Excerpt:

      Maybe it was the eagerness in her voice, or maybe just her words, but whatever she said made him smile. Up till then, he’d seemed like a stranger looking back at her. Then his smile changed everything. Unfortunately, it didn’t last too long. But she’d seen enough and decided right away that he had a dear face. Not what one would call handsome, more like interesting. She’d bet that his full head of messy hair cut short and worn close to his head normally didn’t look so scruffy. That wouldn’t be his style at all.

      His piercing green eyes didn’t have the same sparkle as his mother’s. They were ruthless and compelling, slightly haughty and intense, and the shrewdest stare she’d ever come across. She felt as if he were trying to find her inside of him by staring into his own eyes.

     “Can you see me?” She teased.

     “I do believe I can. I went slightly crossed-eyed for a moment, and I have no doubt that was you sneaking a peek.”  When he grinned, dimples appeared on both sides of his mouth and created a whole different impression. This man devastated with his attractiveness, his charisma.  

     Unequivocally, Abbie knew at that moment, not only had her spirit joined with his, but also her heart now faced a challenge. She’d never believed in love at first sight, more fool her. She shut down her corridor to him and curled up into a small ball lodged inside his body. This needed a great deal of thought. She had to talk herself out of this nonsense, and quickly.



Available at Amazon
Available at Barnes and Noble
Available at Wild Rose Press

***


2012 - A new Year!



Will this be the New Year I'm praying for? The one where a lot of people find out about my books and want to read them. The year where my sales hit the double and triple digits each day so that I feel that my dreams have finally come true.


Unlike many people, I've been blessed, because I love the work I do. Dreaming up new plots, building my characters from vague, unknown individuals to people I learn to laugh with - and adore. Creating conflicts where those same individuals have to screw up a little like we all do in real life ,and then learn from their mistakes…like we all do in real life!!


So with this thought in mind, I'm praying for this year to be the one. The one that when friends ask me, "when did your career actually take off?" I can say. Oh it was in 2012. My favorite year! I remember it well!


And as much as I hope this for myself, I also have the same wish for each and every one of you. That this will be the year you've all been praying for.


***

For this New Years Giveaway Blog Hop (see side panel) I will be happy to present the lucky winner with a $15 Wild Rose Press Gift certificate. All you need to leave a comment and your e-mail address.


***

Got great news just now! Seems my New Year's prayer is starting a bit early. My Cheeky Angel  just got a fabulous review so I thought I'd add it here for you all to read in case you're looking for a wonderful $.99 read.
(see book cover on left side - just click on cover to get to the Amazon page )


***

There's a wonderful contest on at http://shannonmayer.blogspot.com where you have a choice of book covers ( My cheeky Angel included) and the first prize is $150 for a gift certificate for Amazon if you choose a cover and leave a comment. There's other ways to earn points to have a better chance to win so read Shannon's blurb and good luck!


*Happy*New*Year!!

5-star books


Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The Wild Rose Press - My favorite place to buy romance!



I've just been informed that Together for Christmas has been chosen as one of TBR's books of the month...
...so therefore, I need your vote.
It's just a click away...













Together for Christmas...
...is the holiday book you'll want to read this season.
It'll make you laugh and cry, and at the end, it'll make you sigh!!

I've just gotten a wonderful 5 star review from TBR - Goodreads
and would be proud for you to read it.


Another great review from Sizzling Hot Reviews











Night Owl Choice

Available at Amazon
Available at Barnes and Noble
Available at Wild Rose Press



     Today I wanted to blog about the publisher who gave me my first chance to see my name on a book cover.  The Wild Rose Press - (where Romance blooms) is a wonderful romance site of both e-published and paperback romances. They call their website the garden and you’ll see why if you take some time to wander around. They have hundreds of authors writing for many different genres.  

     Personally, I can vouch for the wonderful treatment I received when I first started sending my manuscripts to them for The Vicarage Bench Series. My editor was a sweetheart who led me through the processes and taught me so much along the journey.  Therefore if you are an author looking for a safe place to send your work, or a reader who loves romance and wants the assurance that the books you buy are well edited and professionally produced, then this is the publisher for you.

In fact, I believe in these wonderful book so much that I've offered a $100 Wild Rose gift certificate in the Night Owl contest ( see the link above) as my personal prize offering.

     The Wild Rose Press has everything you could possibly want - Free Reads, YA, Contemporary, Historical, Suspense, Paranormal, Erotic Romance, Holiday Titles, Time Travel, Multicultural, Books in Series, Novellas, and Short Stories - so please come and check out our garden.




In May, 2006 - The Wild Rose Press opened its doors and the website, soon to be called "the garden", went live. With the power of the internet, within days romance writers literally all over the world were beginning to talk about another new publisher that opened its doors. Along with the talk of another new publisher, was the inevitable talk of how long they would last. Still, some authors were willing to take a chance on us and sent in their manuscript. They were pleasantly surprised to find that this publisher was different. The Wild Rose Press had a mission to make publishing a more open and friendly business. TWRP believed that a truly successful book was born of the teamwork among author, editor and publisher. Soon, the term "growing" writers was being associated with this different type of publisher.

Five years later, with over 1200 titles and a stable of solid quality authors, TWRP holds firm to its mission of growing writers and being a "kinder gentler publisher". Rejection letters, although a necessary part of any author's world are warm and encouraging. The purpose of our rejection letters aren't to discourage a budding writer but rather to help them find the clues to unlocking the mystery that takes a manuscript from rejection to publication.

The Wild Rose Press short stories and full length novels can be downloaded to your computer, or any other portable reading device. Visit our FAQ section to find the best format for your reader. Our full length books are also available in print format and can be purchased from our website.

 Whether you write short stories or full length novels; whether you write sweet and sassy or hot and spicy - there's a place for you here in the garden. Why don't you stay and visit for a while. Bask in the warmth of our words while you wander around our website and see where you best fit. When you feel you're ready to submit, review our guidelines and send your work in. Then sit back, take a deep breath and remember it’s not the destination but the journey and writing is the most magical journey of all.

Keep blooming and growing and thank you for stopping by our garden.

Owners - Rhonda and RJ



Anyone who leaves a comment along with their e-mail adress can be chosen to win a free copy of Together for Christmas

Hugs Mimi



There's a wonderful contest on at http://shannonmayer.blogspot.com where you have a choice of book covers ( My cheeky Angel included) and the first prize is $150 for a gift certificate for Amazon if you choose a cover and leave a comment. There's other ways to earn points to have a better chance to win so read Shannon's blurb and good luck!
Mimi












Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Special Moments! Mimi Barbour's Christmas Wishes...





Together for Christmas

I've just gotten a wonderful 5 star review from TBR - Goodreads
and would be proud for you to read it.

Another great review from Sizzling Hot Reviews



Available at Amazon
Available at Barnes and Noble
Available at Wild Rose Press


Night Owl Choice


Special Moments...

This is the time of the year when we all become so busy that we sometimes forget what this season is about. Recently, I received an e-mail that clutched at me, and made me take notice. It was about a violinist playing his instrument in the Washington, DC Metro Station. During the time he played, approximately 2,000 people went through the area, most of them on their way to work. One or two stopped to listen for a short while, an older man the longest. A few people threw money, but the ones who acknowledged him the most were the little ones with busy parents who forced them along so they couldn’t stay and listen.

After 1 hour he finished playing and silence took over, no applause, no recognition and a very few dollars for his trouble. No one knew that this man called Joshua Bell was one of the greatest violinists in the world, who played some of the most intricate pieces ever written for a violin, and this day he played on an instrument worth $3.5 million dollars. 


The Washington Post had organized this experiment to answer this question. In a commonplace environment, at an inappropriate hour, do we perceive beauty and stop to appreciate it? It raised the uncertainty - if we do not have a moment to stop and listen to one of the world’s best musicians, playing some of the finest music ever written, on one of the most beautiful instruments ever made - how many other things are we missing?


The thought scares me a little. I get so caught up in my writing, editing, promoting, and blogging - in fact - all the many time consuming tasks most authors have, that I must admit, it’s easy to let the world float on by. But should we? And at this time of the year especially? So my request to all you wonderful readers is to stop for a while, enjoy the special moments the season of Yuletide brings us and spoil yourself with pleasures and joy.


Until we meet again in the New Year, I wish you and your families all - a warm, wonderful, happy Christmas. And lots and lots of chocolate!



I'll be giving away 3 free e-copies of my Christmas Book
Together for Christmas as long as you leave a comment and your e-mail address. Thanks for joing the Mid-Winters Eve Hop.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

#2 of my promotional steps by Mimi Barbour

Looking for the perfect gift for the romance reader on your Christmas list?


If you are, Together for Christmas is just what your want.


Read the back page blurb and excerpt on the bottom of The Vicarage Bench Page above.




Available at Amazon
Available at Barnes and Noble
Available at Wild Rose Press

I've just gotten a wonderful 5 star review from TBR - Goodreads
and would be proud for you to read it.

Another great review from Sizzling Hot Reviews



Night Owl Choice


Step #2 - of my thirteen promotional steps.

Website – This was my first endeavor into trying to promote myself and my books, and since I want to be truthful, when I'd started in the business, I was basically a coward when it came to technological challenges, I hired a wonderful web mistress (Rae Monet) who not only set up my website, but has looked after that area of my work right from the beginning.

A website is a personal and important kind of a home base where an author can begin to show the world just who she is. Because I was technically challenged on the computer, kinda lazy and scared stupid, I paid a professional to build me a website. I found it to be a wonderful place where I could send friends, readers and industry contacts to find out about my work and about me personally. All of my books can be found there with buy buttons, and there are free reads, contact information and even an ongoing contest. It's a lovely website and it makes me very proud. Therefore, I've never regretted this decision and for the first few years it served me well.

One of the positives about this choice was that my webmistress did all the work. I'd send her the updates periodically, and they'd magically appear. For someone like me who wanted to get my books written without having to use energy for anything else, this seemed like a wise decision, and it was at the time. 

But as we all know, the need to promote became paramount for my career, and I began to learn much more about how things worked. I'd found I could get around on the computer and the Internet a lot better. Let's face it, this type of work forces us to take steps we never thought we would or could, and pretty soon I felt I needed to have more of a hands-on place to give me more personal contact with the public. A place that I controlled….a blog!

More about that in Step #12

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

#1 of my thirteen promotional steps by Mimi Barbour




Looking for the perfect gift for the romance reader on your Christmas list?

If you are, Together for Christmas is just what your want.

Read the back page blurb and excerpt on the bottom of The Vicarage Bench Page above.



Available at Amazon
Available at Barnes and Noble
Available at Wild Rose Press

I've just gotten a wonderful 5 star review from TBR - Goodreads
and would be proud for you to read it.

Another great review from Sizzling Hot Reviews


Night Owl Choice


Step #1 - of my thirteen promotional steps


I guess the very first thing I did after writing my first book was to look for a writer’s group in my area. Thankfully, my research took me straight to the Romance Writers of America and, much to my delight, I found the Vancouver Island Chapter of Romance Writers of America. (VIC-RWA) Without the guidance of others like me, I’d still be floundering around and wondering who to turn to and what to do next. All authors need support from their peers, and let me tell you, the input from their collective knowledge was invaluable.




In my last post I described the 13 steps I took to promote my work. Joining a writing group was #1 and maybe, for me, the most important of all. Right from the beginning, I met a lovely woman who is now a very close friend. She and I have formed an alliance of critique partner, brainstorm mate and supporter during the good times and bad. We all need that special someone who takes your writing seriously and is working toward the same goals. If you're lucky, you may have a family who understands and will be there when your manuscript isn't quite jelling, but they can only go so far into your world.


Workshops and classes that most groups present are also invaluable for an author trying to learn her craft. After all, we can't expect to know everything about the profession without input from others who are having the same experiences or who are now published and have already gone through rejections and learning curves that we all eventually travel. It's wonderful when a question arises and you're only an e-mail away from getting an answer.


I not only joined the closest RWA (Romance Writer's of America) chapter, but while befriending someone on Goodreads, lo and behold, if I didn't find a member of a local writing group WIP that I didn't even know existed. I joined them as well and it has been a wonderfully positive experience. I've met great new friends, quite a few published writers and others struggling that are very supportive. 








Please leave your comment and e-mail address
for a chance to win a
$15
Amazon gift certificate.










Saturday, December 3, 2011

13 STEPS I TOOK TO PROMOTE MY WORK by Mimi Barbour




                                 Available at Amazon
                                   Available at Barnes and Noble
                                     Available at Wild Rose Press



I'm very proud of the 5 star review from TBR - Goodreads


http://thetbrpile.weebly.com/1/post/2011/12/review-and-contest-together-for-christmas-by-mimi-barbour.html

13 Steps I took to Promote My Work:


1. I guess the very first thing I did after writing my first book was to look for a writer’s group in my area. Thankfully, my research took me straight to the Romance Writers of America and, much to my delight, I found the Vancouver Island Chapter. (VIC-RWA) Without the guidance of others like me, I’d still be floundering around and wondering who to turn to and what to do next. All authors need support from their peers, and let me tell you, the input from their collective knowledge was invaluable.

2. Website – This was my first endeavor into trying to promote myself and my books, and since I want to be truthful, when I'd started in the business, I was basically a coward when it came to technological challenges, I hired a wonderful web mistress (Rae Monet) who not only set up my website, but has looked after that area of my work right from the beginning.

3. Newsletter – Soon after my website was up and running, I asked Rae what were her suggestions about the best promotional tactics. She suggested starting up a newsletter. Her idea was that anyone who signs onto your newsletter is interested in what’s happening to you, and they will stay with you as long as you don’t inundate them with too much 'yada yada' (my words) about inconsequential nothings – write when you have news! This has been one of my best-loved choices. Shamelessly, I started the newsletter using all my personal friends names, and then we set it up on my website that anyone who wants to hear from me can enter their e-mail address. It’s lovely to see new people every time I send out another blurb, which I only do when I actually have something super to tell them (new contracts, books being released, contest wins, etc.)

4. Facebook – Does it work? Are there authors who don’t have a facebook page? Not sure that I get a lot of sales through this forum, but I must tell you, it is a great way to keep in touch with others. Just wish I had more time to spend there.

5. Twitter – About six months ago, I decided that Twitter would be one of the best ways to get news out to the big wide social-media world, and so I worked really hard, gave up hours a day and started trying to build my followers. At that time, I had approximately 400 followers, and I am now over the 2000 mark. Again, was it worth all the hours I put into it, the effort it took and the time away from my writing? I did meet wonderful people and wouldn’t give up knowing these new friends for anything in the world. So, yes it was worth it. And the proof came when just recently "My Cheeky Angel" the book I self-pubbed and released in September was chosen as one of five best paranormal books of the month, and I was able to turn to my friends on twitter where I know a great many of my votes came from.

6. Romance sites – About this time I went crazy looking for as many romance sites as I could find. I signed up for All Romance, Novel Sisterhood, Love Romance CafĂ©, Rites of Romance Reviews, Authors Den, Book Rix, you name it – I’m there. And I determined that they all have one thing in common. If you don’t interact often, they just won’t be of much help – and sadly, so much to do – so little time!

7. Goodreads – Again, I have to admit to taking on Goodreads with a lot of enthusiasm, which did wane after a while. It’s time consuming for an author - but well worth while. Because as a reader, and I admit to being a reading freak, it’s a wonderful place to find others who like the same kind of books as you. I’ve met some of my favorite people here, people who I now consider friends, and therefore I try and spend as much time as I can in keeping in touch with them.

8. LinkedIn – When I first became aware of this medium of promotion, it was because a friend had invited me to join. Being that I’m always crazy-busy and tend to dive in before reading rules carefully, I joined and the next thing I knew, I had given them access to my whole e-mail list who then received invitations on my behalf. Took me a while to get myself out of that mess, and I will say here, that the contact at LinkedIn was so kind and helpful. On that site, I’ve probably met more authors, like me, who are just trying to survive and make a few sales and it’s been one of my preferred places to be.

9. Wild Rose Press – Once I became published with The Wild Rose Press, I found a wonderful support team on their loops—other authors who were in the same predicament as myself. We try and help each other keep our spirits up through rejections, bad reviews, and even personal traumas. And, we’re also there to cheer on the good news. Unfortunately, like everything else, there just isn’t enough time to keep in touch daily. I wished there was for they are a great bunch.

10. Savvy Authors – Again, this is another site I have to peek in on periodically. It’s a great place to share news of a blog you’ve written or if you’re a guest with someone else. The writers here are supportive and will interact with you as long as you reciprocate. As on any of the loops, if you don't give – you won't get! But sadly…not a lot of time!

11. Guest blog – I love to be a guest and tried hard to get on as many blogs as I could handle. I do believe that if enough people visit the page, it can result in sales…with a good excerpt and a well-written post, that is. Writing new blurbs for each of these opportunities takes a lot of time and effort, but it is a way to get out of your own zone and in front of strangers—hopefully readers looking for a new author to follow. It also helps you to meet bloggers who love to support you and will go out of their way. But there is one very important drawback and uses up the sand in your timer. Those blogs have to be promoted on your loops, facebook, twitter, etc so there will be people to come and read them. And they need to be attended so you can keep up with the comments.

12. Your own Blogsite – This was my latest attempt of promoting my books. (I know! Why wasn’t it my first!?) I just started up my Blogspot “Believe!” in October and couldn’t…ahhh believe that amount of traffic that ended up there. So, now I’m thinking – did I do this wrong? Should my blog have been the first step in getting my books out 'there'? I’m thinking probably YES!!! Today a blog is such a personal way to interact with readers, that it’s a must for all authors who feel they can handle the extra work. Of course, to my credit, I probably couldn’t have handled the technical aspects a few years ago when I first started in the business. But now…I have a back-list of books, I’m much more computer savvy to the point where I self-pubbed the 1st in my series Angels with Attitude, and I've even made a trailer for my newest release Together for Christmas. See how far I've come? I've upgraded from DUHH I can't do that to I'll figure it out somehow! And you can do the same.

13. Trailers – My latest step into the world of advertising was to make my own trailer for my latest release for The Vicarage Bench Series "Together for Christmas". You can see it here on this blog. For me, this was a huge step forward because I had no idea about the creative world of photos and what to do with them except to be able to download them from my digital camera. But How-to videos on U-tube are the most wonderful inventions, and between Windows Live Movie Maker, stubbornness and 12 tries, the movie is up on u-tube – not perfect but the next one will be better. The best part…it was free!!

So my friends, whatever you decide to use as promotional avenues, and in whatever order, please understand one important and absolute fact – you need really well written books to promote. So take the time to become a good writer. Take the workshops and courses to help you get published, and then believe in yourself.

And…the best advice I can offer you in this business is to follow the Golden Rule – do unto others… I wish you all the best!

Visit with me anytime at mimibarbour@hotmail.com or say 'Hi' when you see me popping up on any of the fun sites!