Winners

So today is Doubleblind’s release day! I trust you’re all going to run out and buy a copy RIGHT NOW? Excellent.

But before you do, I have a couple of winners to announce.

First, the art contest:

I had some lovely entries, but I have to go with…

Deidre. I just love her depiction of Vel.

And now for the winner of the Mammoth antho:

Sabrina

If you guys don’t Email mewithin a week to collect your prizes, I draw new names.

Thanks for playing, everyone!

Doubleblind Countdown Celebration-wk 3


Only a little over a week until Doubleblind comes out on Sept 29! People have sent me a few pictures from where they spotted the book already in the wild. Grimspace came out like two weeks early as well in select locations. I’m told readers are finding it in Hawaii, California, and Florida. I don’t know if it’s anywhere else yet.

This is the final week of the contests leading up to Doubleblind‘s release, and I have something special planned for y’all. I have a fabulous cover artist, Scott Fischer, who does a fantastic job on the Jax books. So to celebrate those covers, I’m giving away a print. You can pick art from Grimspace, Wanderlust or Doubleblind, whichever one you like better. It will be high quality and framable. My agent has some from Scott and she reports they’re absolutely beautiful, prettier than she expected. You can have one for your wall at home.

How do I get this? you ask. Simple. I’m calling on your creative side now. This is a fan-art contest. Bring one (or more) of the Jax characters to life, however you choose. Any means is fine: sketch, paint, clay, computer programs like Poser or Photoshop. Make a video out of Lego people, if you want, enacting your favorite scene. Whatever makes you happy, I want to see it. Here’s an example by Moira Rogers, the Bree half: Jax and March

Once you’ve created your work, upload it somewhere & post a link here in comments. Be patient. I’ll check the spam folder often in case the link red flags your comment (and it does more often than not). One lucky winner will receive a print. The rest of you, I’ll create a fan art page and feature your work on my site. I’m super excited about this, and I hope y’all are too.

anthoFor those of you who are far too lazy busy to do this, I’m giving away a copy of the Mammoth Book of Vampire Romance 2. I have a story in it. It’s called CIRCLE UNBROKEN, and I’m actually pretty proud of it. To win this, you have to promise to read my story first. I’ll post the winner(s) on Sept 29, which means you have until next Monday at 11:59.

Good luck to everyone! Can’t wait to see what you come up with.

Friday Flash – Razorland

Those of you who pay any attention to me on Twitter know I’m Fast Drafting. What is that, you might ask? It’s writing 5K a day for 2 weeks. No breaks. No days off. No tinkering. Just write until the damn thing is done.

I first heard of this via Candace Havens, but I had never tried it because I think doing 5K for more than 14 days would kill me. My adult books are longer, which would mean doing it for 20 days. And OMG, no. 3K a day 5 days a week – that’s my sweet spot & my sustainable, long-term pace.

But for some reason, I thought this sounded like a great idea for my YA. I’m on day 9 now and chanting I think I can like the Little Engine that Could. Thanks to Shannon Reinbold-Gee, kickass author of 13 to Life, one of the best YA novels I’ve read this year, I’m sticking with this. Everytime I think about wussing out, I tell myself, hey, if Shannon can do it and all her farm chores and look after her wee one, then you can do this, so STOP BEING A WHINY BITCH! And I keep writing.

I thought maybe you guys would like a taste of today’s work.

It took us two days to find the part of the ruins where Fade thought his father’s friend had lived. We traveled in the dark and avoided the gangers as best we could. The markings helped with that, and we stayed away from the areas that bore the most paint. Still, it was slow going.

The air smelled different here, sharper, stronger. Each open-mouth breath tasted of that salty, tinned fish. Tegan noticed it too; she lifted her face and then set out east. Fade called to her, but she ignored him. I ran after her because I wanted to know what was causing the change, too. We drew up short when the world ended. Below, a sharp drop, down to loose earth, and beyond that, water. I had never seen anything like it or even imagined; it met the sky for vastness. In the distance, they kissed in whispering shades of blue, deepening as the stars came out and twinkled in reflected light. I drew in my breath, overcome.

“Have you seen this before?” I whispered to Fade.

“Once. But I wasn’t sure I remembered right. I thought I might have dreamed it.”

In my mind’s eye, I saw him half his height, a small boy clinging to his sire’s hand and watching the water tear high against the rocks. I saw no ending to it, just this beginning, or perhaps I had it wrong, and this was the ending of all things. Certainly it felt that way to me, as I gazed in aching silence, and refused to weep for the wonders the enclave brats would never see.

And so I saw the sun come up for the first time, rising over the water until it shone with a reflected light that arrowed toward me. I didn’t know how long we stood there, rapt, but eventually Fade tugged on my hand. I hadn’t even realized he was holding it.

DCC winners – week 2

And we have winners!

Barbara Elness
Berryblu
Bella

All Bs, is it a conspiracy? Could be!

At any rate, these lovely ladies need to email me within a week, or I draw another name. I need full name and address, please. Congrats!

Next week I’ll be posting a fan art contest, where the winner can win a Scott Fischer print of his / her choice of the Jax covers. I’ll also have another deal for you lazy non-creative types, so come back Monday morning.

Doubleblind Countdown Celebration-wk 2


So Doubleblind comes out on Sept 29, and the excitement is mounting as the days tick down. Much squeeing has been noted on Twitter. Could be it Doubleblind related? Oh, I think so. New review!

Because the Jax books are romantic science fiction, I have a special treat for y’all today. Here at AnnAguirre.com, we love talented people, and the author I’m featuring this week on the DCC (week 2) is a triple threat. Jess Granger is charming, beautiful and talented. If she wasn’t also a good friend of mine, I’d be obliged to hate her because she’s simply too much awesome wrapped up in one gorgeous package. To prove I don’t hate her because she’s beautiful, Jess Granger I’m featuring her book on this week’s DCC. Naturally, it’s a sci-fi romance because we’re celebrating all things jet-powered here in September.

If you haven’t already read BEYOND THE RAIN, you’re in for a treat. Jess takes all the usual tropes and spins them. Sex slave and nun? Need I really say more? This book is beautifully written. I recently savored it myself as a reward for doing my work. What a lovely evening. I want that same enjoyment for all of you! BtR You know you want your own copy to tide you over until Doubleblind‘s release. I’m giving away THREE (3) right here on the blog, this week only. Like the other contest, it runs from Monday until Thursday evening. Friday I’ll announce the winners.

At this point, you’re asking, but how do I enter? I so wanna read about the sex slave and the nun!

I understand your needs. I do. That’s such a yummy taboo, isn’t it? And that’s what you have to do to enter. Tell me what taboo strikes you as sexiest. Best friend’s sister? Priest? Nun? Tell us your dark desires: anything that’s so wrong and dirty that it strikes you as delicious. Write it down in comments, and you’re entered to win BEYOND THE RAIN.

PS – Anything that ends in ‘cest’ is too dirty for this blog. Thank you.

Week 1 winners

So I have some winners to announce. Thanks so much for the great response. That was a totally bad-ass bunch of comments. I loved reading about your favorite shows.

And here it is, your moment of win:

Heather (bookobsessed.wordpress.com)
Breia B
C.D. Reimer
I Heart Book Gossip (Cindy)
Sara Hurt

Y’all have a week to email me your full names and addresses. Additionally, please let me know how you want your book personalized (with your name, nickname, etc). If you don’t respond in that time, I draw another name. And here’s the kicker. I don’t go to the post office with these signed goodies until I have all five addresses. So if one person is slacking, it holds up the hoedown for everyone else. It generally takes about two weeks from the time of mailing, so you will have these before Doubleblind comes out. If you read fast, you can be all set for book three. If you don’t read fast, you should get Doubleblind anyway, because I really think you’re gonna want it when the time comes.

ETA: I’m happy to add I now have all the addresses. Sadly, it happened a little too late to get them in the mail today, but I have everything signed and packaged up to be mailed on Monday. Big ups to the winners who were really on the ball! That was a quick response.

My problem with epublishing

In the wake of the pie in face closure of Quartet Press, I am left shaking my head. Not at the closure — I think it was probably wise to shut down before wasting a lot of time and money if the plan was flawed. That’s not what leaves me gobsmacked.

I was mostly offline working when Angela James announced she was moving to QP from Samhain, but even in my writing cave, I heard the angry murmurs and mutterings. It was not altogether clean or painless, I think, although I am far from an insider on the situation.

And that’s my problem with epublishing. It’s not that I question its validity or that I think digital is an invalid form of publication. It’s none of these issues. It’s the fact that it is, at base, still for the most part a cottage industry, run by people who get too emotionally invested in the process. It’s crazy that anyone would be offended that someone takes a better job.

I mean consider the insurance game. If an agent goes to work for State Farm, do you really think the Geico people are like, “OMG, we HATES Ron Jones now! Traitor!! He crossed over!” It’s just not like that in any other business venue I’ve seen, and it makes no sense at all. It’s that kind of behavior that makes it impossible for larger publishers to take the indie presses seriously. It becomes about ego and one-upsmanship instead of professionalism.

So now that QP is no more and Angela has posted her reaction, I’ve seen some perfectly hateful buttmonkeys muttering that she got what she deserved. Really, people? REALLY? To take the insurance analogy one step further, do you really think Ron Jones’s former coworkers at Geico would be gleefully pissing themselves with bitter schadenfreude over the fact that his State Farm office closed? Nuh uh. Number one, they just don’t care that much because it’s a job, not their lives or their religion.

This behavior keeps people on the outside viewing a select chunk of you as hormonal, hysterical women, who couldn’t get publishing contracts in NY and so opened your own companies to peddle your own work. Rightfully or wrongly, that is the perception, and by acting like a gaggle of angry Tasmanian she-devils, you’re only confirming the stereotype.

If the independent digital publisher has any hope of surviving and thriving, it has to be staffed by people for whom it is a job, first and foremost, not a red wagon to wheel around their bloated egos. Get over yourselves, people, and realize you’re being assholes before it’s too late.

Doubleblind Countdown Celebration – wk 1


As most of you know, Doubleblind comes out on Sept 29. I’m kicking things off today because I’m excited about that — book three in the series!– and I hope y’all are too. I’ve been told that Doubleblind is the best book so far. (Those people haven’t yet read Killbox.)

The Bree half of Moira Rogers says: “[Doubleblind] might be my favorite… Just intimate and scary and beautiful.I love books with tons of politics and political maneuvering so I was predisposed to really dig this, but yeah. I loved it. It continues to be my favorite new series and I can’t wait for the rest!”

Here’s the only review to date because very few people have read this book! You guys will need to grab it as soon as it hits the shelves.

GrimspaceWanderlust cover

But in case you haven’t read Jax yet (my goodness, where have you been?), I’m giving out FIVE (5) signed sets of Grimspace and Wanderlust. Maybe you think you don’t like SFR, but there’s never been a better time to plug into this series. Right now you can glom these two and be ready to dash to the bookstore to read book three while it’s all still fresh in your mind. Alternately, if you want signed, personalized copies (so you can give your old copies to your friends), feel free to enter the contest as well.

What do you need to do to win? Tell me your favorite SF movie or TV show and why it’s the best. (Yes, I know I risk inciting Star Wars / Star Trek riots, but this should prove very entertaining!) You have until Thursday midnight, and on Friday, I announce the five winners.

Author websites

I just finished a totally awesome book called THE HEIRESS IN HIS BED by Tamara Lejeune. She’s written some hilarious, off-kilter historical romances. I’d call them farce because of the mad-cap adventures and nonsensical plots, but they’re also sweet and sexy. I’ve read everything this author has ever written. I’m looking forward to her next book. If there is one. See, I have no idea what’s coming down the pike from her because SHE HAS NO WEBSITE.

Unless you’re a total rockstar of an author like Linda Howard, you need a website. You do. Seriously. People need a place where they can find out when your books are coming out, at the very least. And because I’m in that sort of a mood, I will establish my list of demands for said site.

    Don’t do it on a black background. It may look all cool and moody but it’s hard as hell to read. Dark background, pale print gives me a headache.

    If you have auto-play music, I will click away before I read anything.

    If your site is flash-heavy and I can’t skip your intro that cost you a gazillion dollars, but just annoys people who want one piece of info, I will click away before I read anything.

    If your menu is incomprehensible because you’ve come up with super-cute names for all your sections and I can’t figure out what I’m looking at… well, I think you know.

    If your website is all style and no function…

Here’s what I want in an author website:

    To be able to find information quickly

    Not to spend five minutes loading it

    A bio page that tells me something about you. Some authors think it’s cute to make up a bunch of shit like: Sarah J Author was a CIA spy, and a supermodel, and a rockstar who toured all over the world before inventing the flu vaccine. Then she climbed Mt Everest and wrote a rock opera that she starred in. She’s currently incognito living in Paris. You know what? That shit pisses me off. I went to your page because I loved your book enough to want to know a little more about the person who wrote something so awesome, and sadly, now I know you’re a dipwad who likes wasting my time.

    Not to be forced to watch slides of you posing with a motorcycle or a sports car or a half-naked dude and your dog or cat or monkey. If you want to have a photo gallery, by all means, but please, please do not make this your intro page with no way for anyone to escape but the back button.

    Regular updates

Finally, if you can’t afford a big design, I’d much rather you take a simple WordPress template and customize it than to cobble together some hoopty HTML that looks like your webpage escaped from Geocities 1994, and is now fleeing its rightful time period. Likewise, too many blingy sparkly gizmos will scare me off. Give me a clean, simple, elegant template with good information, solidly organized, and I will visit often.

And I’m spent. What are your peeves?

Winner – Can’t Stand the Heat

Hey, people! It’s Saturday, which means I post the winner of this awesome, sexy contemporary romance.

Deidre, come on down! You sly minx, you included your address with your entry, so we’re good to go. I’ll get your book sent out and you should have it in a couple of days. Hope you enjoy it.

The rest of you, come back on Monday because I’ll be starting a huge Doubleblind countdown party with a new contest each week.

Have a great weekend!