Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Haunting Stories!

Vacation Summer 2011 Charleston and trip 473

Everyone has read stories that never quite leave you. They haunt your unconscious with remembrances of something that touched you in some way. Gone With the Wind is one of those stories for me. After becoming so invested in the characters, Rhett left Scarlet. I never got over Rhett leaving Scarlet. I remember as a teenager daydreaming about a different ending. 
 
I read Gone With the Wind well before I saw the movie. In the movie, Scarlet's other children were never mentioned. Only her daughter, Bonnie, with Rhett, but Scarlett had two more children; one with Charles-a boy, Wade, and with Frank- a daughter, Ella. I had this vision that Scarlet's daughter from her second husband met the son of Belle Watling who in my mind was Rhett's. In my version, the two would fall madly in love and with a vivid stretch of my imagination gave Gone With the Wind a semblance of a happy ending.
 
After reading Gone With the Wind numerous times, in my opinion, there really was no way for Rhett and Scarlet to ever have their happily ever after. Think about it. If you stay true to the characters, do you believe that Rhett and Scarlet would ever be happy together? Really, they probably wouldn't be happy apart either, but together...each has character flaws that would keep them from being happy, especially when both wanted the other to be different than who they truly were.
 
That's the reason when I daydreamed in my youth I had their children find happiness together. Strange...I know. I also realize that it's not real, but it felt like it. It haunts me even to this day. Maybe it's the reason Gone With the Wind is a classic—it's a story that lives inside of you.
 
What story that has haunted you? Is there one that you can't forget? Why? 


In the spirit of Halloween, I'm giving a signed of one of my Secret Lives Series.   Comment for a chance to win!

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Saturday, October 26, 2013

Tonya & Jodi's Bookshelf: Seductive Lies by Colleen Connally

Tonya & Jodi's Bookshelf: Seductive Lies by Colleen Connally: BLURB   Only love can heal a heart betrayed...   Harriet Burke has long been haunted by a family scandal. Abandoned by her mother...

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

The Fear of Failing

You may be disappointed if you fail, but you are doomed if you don't try. 
- Beverly Sills, opera singer
Working on my latest novel, I have found its hard coming out of my comfort zone. It's scary. For years, I've lived in the past. When I write my historical books, I transport myself back to that particular time. It's like a daydream on paper.

Now, I'm venturing into the present. My first contemporary romantic suspense- Fragmented- is scheduled to be released at the first of December. I'll admit I'm a little nervous.

This isn't my normal behavior. Usually when I decide to do something, I dive into it and just assume everything will be okay. It's what I did when I went Indie. It's how I've done most anything in my life.

Growing up, my dad was a boys high school basketball coach. My life revolved around basketball. All I wanted to do was play basketball. I remember going to this prestigious girls basketball camp when I was a freshman. In between skill sets, we were broken into teams. Every night, each team played another team. I never got into those games for long. One game I think I was in for maybe 30 seconds—long enough to run up and down the court. One of the opposing girls set a screen on me and I ran right through it. Foul! I was taken out immediately. Even when we practiced, I was hardly asked to participate. Instead, I sat on the sidelines. Instead of being bored, I took the time to  learn how to dribble with my left hand. At my last high school basketball game I played as a senior,  the coach who had run the camp came up to me. He said, "I never thought you would be the player you became."

And I never thought I wouldn't be become a good player.

It occurred to me the other day that is the attitude we must have to succeed. Learn...never stop working toward your goal...but never lose your confidence. Belief in yourself is so important. You can't fear failing.

I am nervous releasing my first contemporary murder mystery book, but I'm also excited...thrilled to be exact.
It's coming- Fragmented.
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Coming December, 2013
I don't want to forget to mention a couple of things— my book giveaway over on Goodreads. It stops on October 24. I'm giving away 5 signed copies of Seductive Lies.
Coming Tuesday- September 24,2013
Goodreads Book-giveaway ends October 24!
For a short period of time, Broken Legacy is only $.99! Now until November 3rd!
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Since its the World Series (and my beloved Red Sox are back), I'll leave you with this:
 My motto was always to keep swinging. Whether I was in a slump or feeling badly or having trouble off the field, the only thing to do was keep swinging. 
- Hank Aaron, baseball Hall of Famer

Monday, October 7, 2013

FALL FREEBIES


Everyone loves something for nothing. We all do. We love the feel we are getting a good deal.

Giving away free books is something we Indies' do. It helps us develop a following. It's how I've sold my books. I believe in giving away a sample of my work. There has always been a debate about giving away free books. A lot of authors are dead set against it. I understand. Think about what we do...the time and energy that goes into writing just to give it away. Doesn't make much sense if you look at it one way, but the other...it has helped me sell books.

It calls attention to my books. I had/have been traditionally published, but it was by small and medium size publishers. The large publishers said I needed to show I can sell books. That pushed me into becoming an Indie. Becoming an Indie has had its ups and downs.

Victoria Holt once wrote—  
Never regret. If it’s good, it’s wonderful. If it’s bad, it’s experience.  

I have learned learned several lessons over the last couple of years of being an Indie writer.
One— Never look back. Make a decision and then look ahead.
Second— Accept criticism. Learn from it.
Third— Enjoy the moments.

As a writer, I love each and every story I've written. I've had a purpose behind each one. When I began writing, I wanted others to enjoy my stories. I write what I love to read myself. It has been an endless journey.

From the bad times of being an Indie emerged my free book, Seductive Secrets under my pen name Colleen Connally. There is a long story as to why I first gave away Seductive Secrets. I didn't want to give it away, but in the end it has been the best thing that has happened to my writing career. I love Seductive Secrets. At this moment in time, Seductive Secrets is approaching 400,000 downloads having been free for a little over a year.

A few weeks ago, I went to my cover artist for my next release. I am planning on releasing my first contemporary mystery/suspense book in December under Colleen Connally. It's the first book in the series, Boston's Crimes of Passion. Back when the Boston Marathon Bombing happened I began formulating a plan on how to give back to my community. I donated a week's proceeds, but felt I needed to do more. I decided to begin this series. When Fragmented is released in December, I'm pledging half my royalties of Fragmented to either The One Fund or another Boston based charity. I have to work out all the details, but it's my way of giving back. This is the cover for my new release.

COMING DECEMBER, 2013!
 Whenever my cover artist, Erin Dameron-Hill, came back to me and told me that I was now considered a best selling author, I was taken back. One of the other things about me being an Indie, I usually don't have a clue about certain things...such as Amazon's best seller list. It's not one of those things that I've ever considered. My focus has always been on writing. When I'm involved in a story I rarely come up for air. It may only be for that moment. I can't write the future...but I can take a moment and say Thank you! I'm truly humbled...truly.

I also realize I have a long way to go on this journey. Along the way, I have met some wonderful people. Some have helped me in ways I can never repay...like Erin. But there are also others such as my new friend, Karen, who is working diligently helping me make my stories the best they can be. I, also, can't tell you how it makes my heart sing to hear the enthusiasm from a reader who wins a signed copy of one of my books. It makes my day. So...my gift to you is my writings.

I have three free books at the moment.

AMAZON       BARNES AND NOBLE

  Seductive Secrets is part of the Secret Lives Series, but it is a standalone book. 

AMAZON      BARNES AND NOBLE


The Cry For Freedom- New revised! The Cry For Freedom isn't a stand alone book...it is part of a series that needs to be read from beginning until the end. The Heavens Shall Fall, Book Four of the Winds of Betrayal Series, is due out in 2014. (I'm hoping the formatting issue The Cry For Freedom was having has been taken care of on Amazon. It should be. If anyone sees differently please let me know).

And then my first free book, Whispers of a Legend, Shadows of the Past. Please be patient with me about the next installment of Whispers of a Legend. I had to push it back at least until 2014...

AMAZON    BARNES AND NOBLE



Enjoy! Have a Great Day!

Thursday, October 3, 2013

My Favorite Season of the Year....

“Fall has always been my favorite season. The time when everything bursts with its last beauty, as if nature had been saving up all year for the grand finale.”
Lauren DeStefano, Wither

I love fall. There is something peaceful about this time of the year. Most years, my husband and I travel. Last year it was a weekend up in Jackson, New Hampshire, at the Christmas Tree Inn. It's beautiful in New England in October.  The leaves turn to brilliance. Living in this New England, you don't even have to go any where to enjoy the beauty. This year I'm going home to Mississippi. I'm going home to see my mom.

I'm busy this month. I have to finish off Fragmented. Then turn my attention will turn back to the Winds of Betrayal series. I have been having an issue with the formatting with The Cry For Freedom. Been trying to up load a different version on Amazon that hopefully takes away the formatting issues, but have been having issues getting it up for some reason.  On Barnes and Noble, I'm still trying to get the new version...I have to go through a couple of different hoops to get my free book up. First it goes through Smashwords, then to Barnes and Noble. It takes time...a little frustrating, but it will get there. I'm putting together a boxed set of the first three books for Christmas! I'm thinking of doing the same thing for Secret Lives!

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Winds of Betrayal Series!

Remember The Cry For Freedom is a free ebook!
For your chance to win a signed copy of my new release, Seductive Lies, enter on Goodreads Giveaways!

Enjoy the season! Have a great day!
Never regret. If it’s good, it’s wonderful. If it’s bad, it’s experience.

- Victoria Holt