Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Wolf's Destiny Now Available in Paperback

Wolf's Destiny is a Paperback!


I hadn't intended to make a paperback version of Wolf's Destiny, the collection, or box set (in ebook), of the first six books, Wolf's Man, Wolf's Claim, Wolf's Mission, Wolf's Huntsman, Wolf's Trust, and Wolf's Reign.

Fearing the cost would be prohibitive for readers, I decided against even thinking about it.

However, my oldest granddaughter wasn't happy. She told me she personally would prefer a paperback to an ebook. She also told me other readers would rather pay for a single paperback (for less cost) than six individual paperbacks for the same material.

I thought about it for several months, then decided it was the height of arrogance to decide for my readers what they want and what they could afford.

I apologize.

At $39.98, it will surprise me if it actually sells, since the cost is a bit on the high side, Wolf's Destiny is now available in paperback. However, it is a savings of nearly $20 over purchasing each paperback book individually.

The book image is a little different than that for the ebook box set.

The main image, however, is the same.

In the future, once the last book in the twelve book serial series is completed, I plan to put out a second box set in ebook form.

If the paperback of the first box set does well, I'll put out a paperback for the second set of six books, too.

So, if you've been awaiting a paperback version of Wolf's Destiny, Naomi is the reason it's now for sale on Amazon.

Other News


The short story I'm working on is coming along. It will answer the question of how Phillip knew there were over a thousand sharpened pencils just sitting in the school office.

As soon as the short story is done, I'll be jumping into book 12, Wolf's Duty!

Later,


Saturday, May 18, 2019

New Updated Covers for Wolf's Huntsman, Wolf's Trust, and Wolf's Reign


Cover Updates are Complete!


The updated covers for Wolf's Huntsman, Wolf's Trust, and Wolf's Reign have been uploaded to Amazon.

I have completed the updates to all the covers in the Texas Ranch Wolf Pack Series. Also, minor corrections were made in each of the stories to fix grammatical issues. The stories didn't change, just got prettied up a bit.

I've also made grammatical corrections on Wolf's Queen. By the end of May, I should have all the books updated.

Over the weekend, I plan to update the files for Wolf's Destiny to match the corrected versions of the first six books. 

New Puzzles


These three updated covers have been made into puzzles, too!  You can find them in the Texas Wolf Pack album at JigsawPlanet.com. Click here for the direct link to the album.

I enjoy working these puzzles. They sometimes help me when I have a plot problem. While working an online jigsaw puzzle, my subconscious mind works at the issue, and sometimes I have the solution ready by the time I finish working the puzzle.

All the covers are done, but I still need to check Wolf's Enemy, Wolf's Rage, and Wolf's Quest for grammatical errors.

My goal in doing all this is to ensure my readers have the best possible experience reading my books.

Other News


I'm working on the plot and subplot for the last book in the Texas Ranch Wolf Pack Series, Wolf's Duty. While I don't plot as most people would understand the word, I think through several possible storylines, decide on new characters, and get at least a few of the scenes in my mind. 

Take care!

Later,







Wednesday, May 15, 2019

New Updated Cover for Wolf's Mission


Updated Cover for Wolf's Mission 


In my efforts to improve my books, I continue to make changes to book covers.

The cover for Wolf's Mission, book three in the Texas Ranch Wolf Pack Series, has been uploaded.

In addition, minor grammatical errors have also been corrected.

If you have the previous version of the book, you have the same story.

Nothing important has changed.

This book is one of my favorites. It has some intense moments, but my favorite line is, “Good to know, Sir. I’d hate to shoot superior officers.”

New Puzzle


Following along with my previous practice, I have created a new online jigsaw puzzle for the book.

The covers for all the books in the series have been created into jigsaw puzzles. There are a total of fifteen puzzles in varying levels of difficulty.

As I add new puzzles to the album, I leave previous book covers, so that there are more puzzles than there are books in the series.

Other News


I'm off to make updates to Wolf's Huntsman. With only three covers left to update, this project should be complete within the next week, and I'll be back to writing the last book in this set of twelve books, Wolf's Duty.

After that, I am undecided as to whether I will begin working on the series for the Colorado pack or the Arkansas pack. Do you have a preference? Which stories would you prefer? Terrell's pack or Eli's pack? Let me know!

Later,



Monday, May 13, 2019

Wolf's Claim has a New Cover!

Updated Cover for Wolf's Claim!


The Wolf's Claim cover now displays the wolf from the later books in the series.

The cover should show up in Amazon within the next 72 hours!

In the ongoing process of improving my writing and my marketing, I am continuing the effort to update all my first six books to include a wolf.

Why go to the trouble of changing or updating these six covers?

Part of it is to make the book covers match genre and market tropes for my books.

In some ways, the book series is hard to market. The books are paranormal romance/suspense/thriller/action/adventure mash-ups, but primarily the stories are about the characters and their loves.

Suspense/thriller readers who enjoy shifters seem to like them as much as paranormal romance readers do.

As I go through the books to prepare for the new covers, I am fixing some of the continuity errors in the series. The action and plot are still the same. The changes I've made do not affect the story, but I think will make the series better overall.

If you read them again after the books are all updated, I would love to hear what you think.

New Wolf's Claim Puzzle Available!


The new Wolf's Claim cover is a puzzle, too. The old cover is still available to work as a puzzle, too. This one has 130 rotatable pieces.
If you like working jigsaw puzzles, check it out.


Other News



Wolf's Guard, the newest book in the series, has been well received. I am so thankful. It's hard to know while you're writing a book if you are doing a good job or flubbing everything up.

The next book to get a make-over/update is Wolf's Mission. I'll post and let you know when it's done.

Later,






Saturday, May 11, 2019

Wolf's Man: New Cover


Wolf's Man has a New Cover!


As an indie author, I am a lifetime learner. Recently, I learned that my first six covers are not totally to market.

What this means is that the people most likely to read my books will pass on them, because there isn't an expected component added to the cover.


My series, Texas Ranch Wolf Pack Series, is about wolf, panther, and bear shifters, among others, but the first six books in the series do not have wolves on the cover. 


Over the next few weeks, I will be updating the covers of all six books.


The first, Wolf's Man, has been submitted and should be available on Amazon soon.


So, what do you think? Like this one better, or like the old one better?


New Wolf's Man Puzzle


For readers who also enjoy working online jigsaw puzzles, I've created a new puzzle for this new cover. The puzzle has 120 pieces.  Enjoy!


The old book cover will continue to be available as a puzzle, too.


Later, 









Monday, May 6, 2019

Wolf's Guard: Now Available in Paperback!

Prefer Paperbacks to E-Books? 

Wolf's Guard is in Paperback, now!


Paperback versions tend to take a few days longer before they are available, even when they are uploaded to Amazon at the same time.

If you prefer paperbacks, you can find Wolf's Guard here.

One of my readers told me she would be starting the series over and waiting to read this book until she gets to it. That way she will have all previous events in mind when she reads Wolf's Guard. I can't tell you how thrilled I am that someone would do that. 

Other News


Book 12, Wolf's Duty, is Started!


I woke up in the middle of the night with a scene ready for the next book in the series. Rather than hope I would remember it, I got up and wrote it. This morning, I was thrilled to see that it was the perfect chapter 1 for the next book.

My mind is churning with ideas, and I'm taking notes. Hopefully, book 12 won't take as long to write as book 11 did.

Book Cover Jigsaw Puzzle




Like working online jigsaw puzzles? I have all the books in my Texas Ranch Wolf Pack Series set up as puzzles for you to enjoy.

All eleven of the book covers are there, as well as the cover for Wolf's Sorrow.

The Wolf's Guard Puzzle has 70 pieces, and the individual pieces can be rotated to make the puzzle a little more challenging.

The rest of the puzzles for the other book covers are available on the Texas Ranch Wolf Pack Series puzzle page. I enjoy making these puzzles for you. And I love working them out.


Enjoy!

Later,









P.S. My time on completing the Wolf's Guard puzzle is 9 minutes, 21 seconds. Can you beat it? Comment below and let me know!

Saturday, May 4, 2019

Wolf's Guard has Published!

Finally! Wolf's Guard has published!

Wolf's Guard took much longer to write than I thought it would. In a way, that makes sense, because this book is over 61,000 words compared to the 35,000 to 42,000 words for the books in the rest of the series.

The book opens, like many of the books in this series, with several chapters setting the story up from different points of view.


Blurb:

Rogue werewolves attack the White House!

Nate, king of all shifters, not only has to deal with the werewolf threat, but he must also deal with the consequences of being outed to the public. No one said being the king of all shifters would be easy. No one said it would be this hard, either.

Meanwhile, Bess finds her mate in the queen's kitchen. Learning he's a dragon is almost too much. Bess doesn't need a man to be happy. Especially not one who keeps his foot in his mouth.

As the only dragon shifter on Earth, Magnus never expects to find a mate. When he sees Bess, he knows she's the bear for him. But she won't have anything to do with him, and everything he does seems to shove her away.

________________

Let me know what you think of it!


2 Preview Chapters


Chapter 1


    Peyton Marston turned off a Texas farm-to-market road into the Rollins Ranch driveway, the RV’s wheels grumbling over the cattle guard bars. Cedar and evergreen live oak trees cast deep shadows on the brittle, brown grass welcoming him back to the ranch. Another rumble of sound and a glance in the rearview mirror verified that Phillip followed behind him in the second RV.
As much as he enjoyed the trip to Florida with Gloria, his soon-to-be mate, his kids, Paige and Phillip, and the Heath family, Peyton was relieved to be back on the ranch. After his only shift in the Everglades resulted in a confrontation with a couple of alligators, Krieges, his wolf, refused to shift again. Krieges howled in his mind, excited at the return to pack lands.
Peyton glanced at Gloria. Sitting in the front passenger’s seat, she surveyed the area, as if looking for wild animals running through the trees. He tapped the back of her hand where it rested on her denim-covered thigh, then grinned when she looked at him. “Looking for wolves?”
Gloria bit her lip, then grinned and nodded. “I suppose I am.”
“You’re not likely to see any this time of day unless they’re patrolling the ranch border.” He cast another glance her way. “I thought you were okay with all this.” He didn’t intend for the sentence to end in a question, but it did.
“I’m, it’s just . . . well, it’s just a little weird, still.” She lifted a shoulder and smiled into his eyes. “I’ve known Nate for more than ten years, but I never knew he was were.”
“I’m not surprised since he didn’t know until last spring. I told you about his medallion, right? The one that prevented his shifting?”
“You did.” Gloria pressed her palms together and tapped her lips with her forefingers.
“Not changing your mind, are you?”
“About what?”
Peyton pulled the RV to the side of the road, put it in Park, and waved out the window for Phillip to stop. “Paige!”
He heard muffled movement, the bedroom door opened, and Paige walked to the front of the RV. “Need something, Dad?”
“Yeah. You and Laci Jean get out and ride the rest of the way with Phillip and Lacy’s family. And tell Phillip to go on ahead.”
“But we’re almost there.” When Peyton raised an eyebrow, Paige frowned, glanced from her dad to Gloria, then sighed. “Okay.” She turned and called, “Hey, Lacy, let’s ride the rest of the way with Phillip.”
Peyton watched in the mirror as the two girls, one in her teens and the other in her mid-twenties, opened the door and left. After they climbed into the other RV, Phillip pulled around Peyton and Gloria and drove toward the ranch compound. Peyton turned off the ignition and twisted in his seat to face his mate.
“What’s wrong?”
She twisted her hands in her lap, shook her head, and looked out the windshield. “Nothing.”
The acrid smell of the lie filled the RV. Nose twitching, Peyton studied her profile for a moment. Gloria looked good for her early fifties, but after Nate changed Peyton to a wolf, his fifty-two years didn’t show. He regressed until he looked as young as his twenty-four-year-old daughter. But even with grey highlights in her black, pixie-cut hair and crow’s feet at the corner of her eyes, Gloria was the most beautiful woman Peyton had ever seen.
He gazed at the side of her face, watched as pink climbed her neck and spread across her cheek. “We both know that’s not true.”
When she cut her eyes at him, he grinned and tapped the side of his nose. “I can smell it when you don’t tell the truth. Remember?”
“It’s just . . . that guy at the station . . ..”
“The one that called you my mother?”
Her blush darkened, and she bowed her head. “It feels so strange, Peyton. I mean, I know you’re a couple of years older than me, but you don’t look it.” She clenched her fists.
Peyton frowned as she slowly unfurled her hands and pressed them against her thighs. “You know you’ll regress, too, once we’re mated.” He visually searched what he could see of her face. “You haven’t changed your mind, have you?”
“No, but . . ..” She blew out a long breath. “You don’t really know me. I mean, we met right before Christmas, and even after spending Christmas together in Florida, we haven’t known . . . I mean. What if you suddenly change your mind?” She swallowed hard and turned to look out the side window with a soft gasp of breath. “What if you decide I’m not your mate?”
“Gloria, look at me.” When she refused to turn, he gently took her shoulders in his hands and turned her to face him. “Krieges knows you’re my mate. He told me the first time I walked into a room with you in it that you’re the only woman I will ever love.” Palm gentle against her face, he searched her eyes. “You don’t have to choose me. Nate told you that. If you decide you don’t want this or decide you want someone else, you’re free to choose.”
“But you . . ..”
“No, I’ll never find anyone else. For me, you’re it. If it will make you happy, I’ll let you go. I’ll protect you and watch over you from afar, but I won’t push you into anything you’re not ready for.”
She was silent for a moment, her gaze pinned to the hands she clasped together. “What if I get stuck? I heard Phillip tell Violet that sometimes changelings get stuck between forms and can’t control themselves.”
“That’s what’s bothering you?” Peyton clenched his jaw and was happy Phillip wasn’t within reach at the moment. “Gloria, Nate won’t let that happen.”
Her face jerked toward him. Eyes blinking rapidly, she swallowed. “He’ll be there? I mean, I thought you would bite me while we, um, while we . . ..”
He managed not to laugh but couldn’t help a few chuckles. “We could do it then, but I’d prefer Nate not be there for that.”
Her eyes narrowed. “Stop laughing at me.”
“Sweetheart, I’m sorry. We’ll do the bite during the wedding ceremony. Nate will be there to make sure it works without problems.” Peyton captured her hands in his and raised them to his lips. After pressing a gentle kiss to her fingers, he smiled at her. “I wouldn’t do anything that could harm you, Gloria. You are my life.”



Chapter 2


     “Peyton and Phillip just entered the ranch gates.”
“Thanks, Jonathan.” Nate Rollins, royal alpha of the Rollins Ranch pack and King of the Were, disconnected the call and dropped his cell phone into his pocket. “The Peyton’s and Heath’s are here.” He smiled at Janelle, his mate, and handed their daughter, Ophelia, to her.
Ophelia squirmed in her mother’s arms, reaching back to her father. “Daddy!”
Nate’s jaw dropped and he huffed. “Did she just . . .?”
Janelle laughed and gave Ophelia a squeeze. “She did. She called you Daddy. It’s the first word she’s spoken since the night Pace tried to kill Mason.”
“Hmm. Let me have her.” Nate lifted Ophelia into the air and looked up into her laughing face. “Want to go with Daddy to see Peyton?”
Giggles erupted and Ophelia grabbed his hair with both fists as soon as he lowered her enough that she could reach him. “Ouch. Guess it’s about time for a haircut.” Careful not to hurt her, Nate pried her hands from his hair. Patting her back, he settled her into the crook of his arm and walked toward the office door. He quirked an eyebrow at Janelle. “Coming?”
A few minutes later, Nate opened the front door and walked out on the covered, wrap-around porch. The younger ranch kids played in the center of the compound, chasing each other. A group of teens came around the corner of the house, watching to see who was coming up the drive. Nate stood at the top of the steps and watched an RV pull up and stop. By the time Paige, Phillip, Lee, Violet, Laci Jean, and Claude, Violet’s and Laci Jean’s father, exited the RV, a second RV rumbled down the drive toward the ranch compound.
Nate waited until the second RV stopped and Peyton helped Gloria from the cab before walking down the porch steps. “Welcome home.”
He ignored the surprise on Claude’s face and handed a key to Violet. “Violet, this is the key to your house. You and your family will occupy the house on this side of the pond.” He waved a hand toward a modular home in the distance. “It’s the closest one to the schoolhouse that’s available. With four bedrooms, it will allow you to consider moving your grandparents in with you if you desire.”
“Thank you, Mr. Rollins.”
“None of that. Everyone calls me Nate. I expect you and your family to do the same.”
“Yes, Sir.”
“School starts Monday, so that’ll give you a few days to prepare for your classes.”
“Monday?” Violet glanced at the faces around her. “But it’s the middle of January. I thought I was late.”
“Monday. We combined Spring Break with the holiday break to give you the time you needed to travel to Florida.” Nate shrugged. “The kids didn’t mind having extra time off, but I think most of the parents are ready for school to start again. After you get settled, you can meet with Flora. She’ll show you where everything is and help you get started.”
“Thank you, Nate.”
“Sure.” Nate glanced over his shoulder to the teens standing at the corner of the house. “Reese, Trey, Adrian.”
Three teen boys walked to the group. “The boys will help you get the RV unloaded. Boys, you remember Violet?” When they nodded, Nate waved at the teen girl in Peyton’s group. “This is Violet’s sister, Laci Jean, and her father, Claude.”
Reese stepped forward and offered his hand to Laci Jean. “Welcome to the ranch. I’ll be happy to show you around.”
“As if,” muttered Adrian. He shouldered past Reese and took Lacy’s other hand in his. “I’m Adrian. You need anything, you let me know.”
Nate laughed at the boy’s antics, then smiled at Claude’s glare. “Don’t worry, Claude. They’ll be perfect gentlemen. Right, boys?”
All three whipped their faced to Nate, then looked relieved when he didn’t seem upset. They nodded. “Yes, sir,” chorused three voices.
The door behind Nate opened. He glanced back and smiled at Freyja and Dana. “Dana, come meet Laci Jean. She’s new to the ranch, too.”
Dana’s soft footsteps came down the porch steps. She walked past Nate and gave the three teen boys the stink eye. “You guys leave her alone for a while. Let her get used to everyone before you start being silly.”
Nate raised an eyebrow when the boys nodded and took a step back. Glancing from them to Dana, he started to ask what was going on, when Freyja nudged him from behind. Nate glanced back at the tiny woman. She smirked at him and shook her head. Deciding to wait and ask Freyja later, he cleared his throat to capture everyone’s attention. “Since the weather turned off warm today, we’re having a barbeque at the shelter this evening. We’ll see you all there.”
Ophelia jabbered as if she was repeating his last sentence, then grinned at her audience. Nate laughed. “And Miss Ophelia wants you all to be there.”
After Phillip loaded everyone back in his RV and drove to park in the drive at the house Violet’s family would live in, Nate gave Ophelia a kiss and handed her to Janelle. “Sorry, Sweetheart, Daddy has to go to work for a while.”
Behind him, Peyton’s RV motor roared to life, and Peyton moved the RV to park in the line of RVs between the main house and the warehouse. Peyton’s family would still live in the RV until the bear carpenters could get more houses ready. Nate sighed. The ranch was starting to get crowded.
Janelle called Lisa to take Ophelia to the playroom. Nate shared a grin with Janelle when Lisa took Ophelia and the child pouted all the way up the steps and into the house. Taking hold of Janelle’s elbow, Nate walked to the front door, then turned and looked back at Freyja. “Come to the office for a minute, Freyja.”
When he reached the office, he settled into the executive’s chair behind the desk and glanced at Janelle and Freyja. Janelle settled in the chair on the other side of his desk, while Freyja continued to stand. Sunlight streamed through the window behind him, warming his shoulders. “Something tells me I missed something out there. What’s up?”
Freyja lifted one shoulder, and Nate forced himself not to grin. Viking though she was, the woman was quickly picking up Americanized habits. “The boys teased Dana, so I told her to take care of it.”
“Take care of it?”
“Hmm. After all the training I gave her while we were prisoners, she’s pretty good at self-defense.”
Nate stilled, red tinging his eyesight. In his mind, Koreth tensed. “She needed to defend herself?”
“It’s nothing, Nate. The boys were teasing her. One at a time, she put them on the ground, and they couldn’t get up, no matter how hard they tried. Now, they leave her alone.”
“But Dana’s human!”
Head tilted to the left, Freyja laughed at his expression. “She’s half were, Nate, and stronger than you would think. With a little training, she’s more than able to take care of herself.” She motioned toward the door. “I have chores to complete unless you need something?”
Nate shook his head. “Let me know if I need to . . ..”
“Nate, Dana’s fine. The boys respect her and her abilities to take care of herself. I really think they were flirting, and she took it wrong. She hasn’t been around many boys her age, so she doesn’t always know how to handle their antics.”
“Okay. I’ll stay out of it.”
“Sometimes, that’s the best thing to do. If you get involved, the boys will resent it. As it stands, they know to treat her well, and you can deal with more important things. Like, you know, having a dragon on site. It’s going to take time for the were to get to know him and trust him.”
“But not you?”
“I’ve known Magnus my entire life. He’s faithful and loyal, but sometimes single-minded. He’ll fit in, eventually.”
Nate released a sigh. “I’m sure he will. I think it’ll take longer for me to be comfortable with him than the reverse.”
“Probably.” She studied him for a moment.
Nate fought the need to squirm in his chair. “What?”
“Has anyone told you that you’re doing well?”
He blinked at her. “What?”
“For a man who didn’t know he was were until less than a year ago, you’ve adapted quite well. Give Magnus time, Nate. He’ll grow on you.”
“Like a friend?”
“If you let him. If you choose not to be his friend, he’ll grow on you like a fungus. He won’t let you face danger alone. His entire purpose is to be the king’s protector. Relax and be his friend. It’ll make the future easier on both of you.” With a wave, she grinned at Janelle and left the office.


________________________

The paperback version will be available soon!

Later,





Friday, April 12, 2019

Texas Ranch Wolf Pack: Serial or Series

Is The Texas Ranch Wolf Pack a Series or a Serial Story?

A series is a group of books that are related to each other by setting or characters. You can think of television for this idea. For instance, the old television show Andy Griffith is a set of stories based on the lives of different characters, or things that happened to them. You can watch one episode without knowing anything about Mayberry or the sheriff's family to understand what's going on.

A series is a group of books that follow a group of characters through sequential events. In a podcast I recently listened to, Anne-Marie Meyer identified The Lord of the Rings as a serial story. The story starts in The Fellowship of the Ring, continues in The Two Towers, and concludes in The Return of the Ring. The last two books could be read without reading The Fellowship of the Ring first, but they wouldn't make much sense. By the way, these books are free to read if you have a Kindle Unlimited membership. And you can read them on your computer, tablet, or even your telephone! All the Texas Ranch Wolf Pack books are enrolled in Kindle Unlimited, too!

After thinking about this for a very few minutes, the answer was obvious to me. The Texas Ranch Wolf Pack series is a serial story. What this means is that, though some of the books can be read stand-alone, the story makes more sense if you read in order from book one forward.

I didn't plan this. Actually, truth be told, I didn't plan the series at all. Book one tackled me and insisted it be written. The rest were written because the story wasn't complete. Wolf's Man is not the first book I've written, but it is the first published under my pen name, Lynn Nodima.

Reading Order for the Serial Series


For the best reading experience, the books should be read in this order:
  1. Wolf's Man
  2. Wolf's Claim
  3. Wolf's Mission
  4. Wolf's Huntsman
  5. Wolf's Trust
  6. Wolf's Reign
  7. Wolf's Queen
  8. Wolf's Enemy
  9. Wolf's Rage
  10. Wolf's Quest
  11. Wolf's Guard -- Coming Soon!
  12. Last in the series is TBD
Wolf's Destiny is a box set that includes the first six books in the set. At present, I plan to put out another box set containing the last six books in the set soon after book 12 is published.

Wolf's Man is the genesis story for the series. It tells how Nate meets Janelle and becomes embroiled in pack business. Each book that follows provides more information about Nate and Janelle while highlighting the lives of some of the pack.

Is it a Romance?


Yes and no. Is romance the major force in the stories? Not always. The struggle to build a kingdom for the were and keep them safe is the main story. But there is a strong romance in each book, and each book ends with a HEA (happy ever after) or HFN (happy for now).

The books are all written for story, much like the books of Andre Norton, Marrion Zimmer-BradleyAnne McCaffrey, or Elizabeth Moon (some of my favorite authors). When the story includes romance, there is romance in the book. In my books, there is no profanity or sex on the page, so they are safe reads for teens and pre-teens, too. My goal is to write books I can comfortably hand to my grandkids if they want to read them.

What do Readers Say?


These are just a few of the many reviews my books have received. Most of these came from Wolf's Destiny, but since the box set is made up of the first six books, the reviews apply to those, as well.
"I am a big fan of this genre of the paranormal. Lynn is an excellent example of a creative writer who is adding depth to the legends. Like "Twilight" it adds new aspects and is a must-read for fans. Loved it!" ~Kindle Customer
"Can you give a series a 10?? I absolutely loved this series..." ~SpanishLady
"Wow! “Wolf’s Destiny” is an incredibly addictive, page-turning series!" ~Deb
"I love when an author takes a regular topic and changes it just enough to make it seem brand new. That is this series." ~Sandra
"This series was amazing. If you love anything supernatural you’ll absolutely love this series." ~J.
"Excellent storylines, well-developed characters, and plot lines; a very enjoyable read! Would recommend to anyone that enjoys shifters, romance, and action." ~Mary
"I loved this series from the start. Wonderful characters, excellent plotlines, this series has it all. I would live more in this Universe." ~Teresa Coffey

Please Note: Minor spelling and grammar edits have been made. You can see the original reviews by visiting the reviews on the Amazon book pages. The original meanings of the reviews have not been changed.


Thank you so much to all the readers who take the time to leave a review. Good or bad, all reviews are appreciated! I love hearing from my readers. Please comment below and let me know what you think.

Later,













Thursday, April 4, 2019

Self-Publishing Formatting Helps: Indents

Formatting Your Manuscript for Self-Publishing


Word is a great tool. It is the tool of preference for me. I taught Word in a collegiate setting for more than ten years, so I am very familiar with the application.

Sometimes you have to know a few tricks to make Word do what you want it to do. Especially when you are formatting your document.

We all learned in keyboarding or typing class to use the Tab key to indent a new paragraph. The tab set can be set where ever you want it so that the document looks pretty good.

Unfortunately, when you upload the file to an ebook publisher, it can go wonky. Especially paragraph indents. I don't know the reason this happens, but I think it's because KDP set tabs differently. In one manuscript, I had indents going from normal to moving to the center mark of the page. It wasn't consistent and looked terrible.

I've since learned that this is an issue for other authors, too.

Here is my fix:

Paragraph dialog box settings for fiction manuscripts
Don't use the Tab key.

Simple, huh?

Okay. Sorry for being snarky.

Setting Indents


You really don't want to use the Tab key, though. Instead, use the Paragraph dialog box. To get the Paragraph dialog box to open, click the Launch button at the bottom right corner of the Paragraph group on the Home tab (circled in red in the image).

I justify my books, so the alignment in all my documents is Justified.

Make sure you have Body Text selected for the Outline Level.

Next, set the Left and Right Indentions to 0.

Under Special, drop down the arrow and select First Line. In the By box, use the up and down arrows to select what you desire. I wouldn't go higher than 0.5". To me, that seems a bit too deep an indent. Especially in Kindle books. I use 0.3".

Using this setting makes all the indents the same. Paragraph indents are automatically when you hit the enter key after the last sentence in the previous paragraph.

In the Spacing section, make sure Before and After are set to 0 pt. If you don't do this, Word will add extra space between paragraphs.

For Line Spacing, use the drop-down arrow and select Multiple. I set my line spacing at 1.08, but you can play with it to see what you like.


Before you click OK, click the Line and Page Breaks tab at the top of the Paragraph dialog box.


While the Pagination selections are helpful at times, they cause awkward spacing in an e-book or a paperback book. For my fiction manuscripts, I make sure nothing here is checked, then click OK.

Other apps will have different settings, but for Word, these work.

Please leave a comment and let me know of any other Word problems you might have. I'll do my best to provide an answer for your issues.




Take care,











P.S. Check out my new Author Helps Page.







Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Creating DIY Book Ads

DIY Book Ads for Indie Authors

Create Your Own Ad




Are you an indie author? Need some visuals for your book ads, but can’t afford an artist or don’t have the photo manipulation software or skills to create it yourself?

This article will provide a way to create your own advertising with tools you may already have and tools available for free online. And because you are using the background image you choose, it isn't likely anyone else will have the exact same ad for their books.

Tools You Need


 The instructions in this article assume:

  • You have Word 2013 or Word 2016 installed on your personal Windows computer.
  • You have the cover art for your book.
  • You have access to the Internet.

 That’s all you really need. Okay, let’s get started.

Download a Background Image


You will need a background image. Don’t try to find an image that exactly matches your book. What you’re looking for here is a mood or theme photo. For instance, my PNR series, The Texas Ranch Wolf Pack Series, uses a full moon on each cover. Many of the covers also have the image of a wolf.
As my example, I am going to use an image from publicdomainpictures.net, but you can select a photo from any free stock photo site. I’ll post a list of places to find free images at the bottom of the post.


After downloading the free image, I will open it in a Word document. Okay, if all you ever use Word for is to write documents, this is going to be fun. And enlightening!

Adjust the Image


Click on the photo to select it. Look at the right end of the menu tabs on the ribbon. See the highlighted Format tab? That’s the ribbon tab that contains all the important photo editing options.


To Darken the Image


The first thing I want to do with this image is darken it. The tools we need for this are on the Format tab, at the left side of the ribbon, in the Adjust group. Click the Corrections arrow. For this ad, I want the colors dark, so I selected the second image on the bottom to get the dark lighting I want. Okay, now I want a little more blue in the photo.

To Change the Color Tone 


In the Adjust group, click the Color arrow. Under the Color Tone heading, I will select the first image (4700 K). Now the color is right for this ad.

Create a 3D Cover Image


For the next step, I need to go online to get my cover photo in a 3D format. Derek Murphy graciously provided the 3D Cover Creator for authors to use. The link is https://diybookcovers.com/3Dmockups/.

 For this ad, I want an e-reader image, so I will select Single, then select the second image on the bottom row. Click Next.

On the next screen, I upload my Wolf’s Man cover, then click Next. On the next screen, scroll down below the images you uploaded, then click PNG or JPG. Since I need the image to have a transparent background, I select PNG.

The image is rendered as a 3D cover on an e-book.

(Derek Murphy created this wonderful tool and kindly shared it with the author community. BTW, Derek also helped me with the design for the cover. Many thanks, Derek!)

Next, I need to add this image to my first image. While I could copy and past the image on top of the other, there is a better way that will give me more control over this image.

Add a Shape to Hold the Book Image

Unselect the image you’ve been working with in Word. Click the Insert tab. In the Illustrations group, click the Shapes arrow and select the Rectangle shape. Click on top of the original image and drag and draw the rectangle shape.

Right-click the rectangle shape, and select Fill at the top of the shortcut menu, and then click Picture…

Navigate to find the 3D Cover image you created. (Mine is in my Downloads folder.)

Resize the image by pulling on the resizing handles at the corner of the image.

Format the Rectangle Shape

To remove the border around the Rectangle, with the shape holding your PNG file selected, click the Shape Outline arrow in the Shape Styles group, and select No Outline.

Move the book image until it is in the location you desire.

Add a Call-to-Action 


Add another Rectangle shape to hold the ad text. Add a Rectangle Rounded Corner shape to hold your call to action. Right-click the Rectangle Rounded Corner shape, click the Shape Fill button, then select the color you desire for the background of the call to action.


For my ad, I will select Dark Blue in the Standard Colors section. Right-click the Rectangle Rounded Corner shape again, and click Outline, then select No Outline.

Right-click the Rectangle Rounded Corner shape again, and click Add Text from the menu. Add the call to action text.

Change the font to the desired font (I’m using Lato Semibold for all text.) and change the size to fit the shape.

Add Your Advertising Text Right-click the remaining Rectangle shape. Click Add Text.

Type the text you want. Change the fonts, font colors, and font sizes of the text as desired. Now, I need to do something about the background of the text.

The following actions are the reason I used a Rectangle shape to add the text instead of inserting a Text Box. Click on the Rectangle shape holding your ad text. Click the Format tab.

To fade the edges, in the Shape Styles group, click the Shape Effect arrow. Hover the pointer above Soft Edges, and select Soft Edges Options at the bottom of the menu. With Soft Edges selected in the Format Shape dialog box, type 7 pt in the Size box. (Ultimately, I decided not to use this option.)

At the top of the Format Shape dialog box, beneath Shape Options, select the Fill & Line button (looks like a paint bucket).

 Click Fill. In the Transparency box, use the roller arrows to set the Transparency to the best percent. Set Transparency to 100%. If you need a little color behind. After removing the background color, I decide I don’t need color behind my text for it to show up. Alternatively, I could have clicked the No fill radial button and achieved the same effect.

Using the Snipping Tool


Next, I will use a tool that came with your Windows Operating System. Click the Start button at the bottom left corner of your screen. Scroll through the Apps List and click on Windows Accessories, then click Snipping Tool.

In the Snipping Tool window, click Mode and select Rectangular Snip. Use the crosshair pointer to draw a rectangle around the ad image. If you have too much empty space on your image, here is where you can crop it while making the image into a JPG photo.

FYI: The image will be saved at a low-resolution, which is great for using on the Internet. Unless the specs have changed recently, a computer monitor will only display about 72 pixels per inch, so a low resolution photo looks great and a blog post or online ad. Another plus is that it won't be a memory hog and slow down your blog post when it's loading.

The Snipping Tool window opens again showing the image you selected. If the image is what you want, click File, then Save As, and give your new ad a file name.

If the image is not what you want, click New, and try again.

And there you have it, folks. A DIY ad to use in your book advertising. It may not be as sharp as a professionally created ad, but it serves the purpose.

Have fun!

Places for Free Images 


These are just a few of the available sites for free images. Again, be sure you select an image that doesn’t have a recognizable human on it and doesn’t show product details. Even though they are available on these sites, and the site says they are free, you have to be careful about using them.

www.publicdomainpictures.net 
www.pixabay.com
www.unspalsh.com
www.pexels.com




If you're interested in checking out the book in the advertisement, you can find it on Amazon.

Later,



Monday, January 21, 2019

Guest Post: Emotion Thesaurus Cover Reveal



Have you ever held onto a secret you've been dying to share, and then finally...you can? For the last few weeks I've been helping Angela and Becca at Writers Helping Writers keep a BIG secret...what the next book in their thesaurus series will be. It might seem strange to not tell one's readers what book you're planning to release...unless you happen to write books on Show, Don't Tell like Angela and Becca do! They couldn't resist the opportunity to show, not tell, by waiting for the cover reveal. They even created a *REDACTED* cover for it, which you might have seen floating around.

We're revealing the cover at long last!

*drum roll*


The next book in the descriptive thesaurus series is The Emotion Thesaurus Second Edition! It's been 7 years since the original Emotion Thesaurus hit the shelves. Many writers have credited this unusual book with transforming their writing. This guide is packed with helpful lists of body language, thoughts, and visceral sensations for 75 different emotions, which makes it easier for writers to convey what characters feel. Since 2012, many have asked the authors if they would add more emotions, so that's what Angela & Becca have done. This new edition has added 55 more emotions, bringing the total to 130. There are other new additions to the book and in fact, it's almost doubled in size! I recommend checking out the full list of emotions (and some sample entries) HERE. And more good news: this book is available for preorder! You can find it on Amazon, Kobo, iBooks, and Barnes & Noble.

Amazon: 
   https://amzn.to/2RVq42k
Kobo: 
   https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/the-emotion-thesaurus-a-writer-s-guide-to-character-expression-2
Apple Books (iBooks): 
   https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/emotion-thesaurus-writers-guide-to-character-expression/id1449848058?ls=1&mt=11
Indiebound: 
   https://www.indiebound.org/book/9780999296349

Full Disclosure: The Amazon link is an affiliate link for the owner of this blog. If you purchase through that link, the blog owner may receive a small referral fee. If you prefer to purchase with a non-affiliate link, you are welcome to use this link instead: The Emotion Thesaurus, Expanded.

The other links may contain affiliate links that will provide Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi a small referral fee if you use them to purchase the book.

Thank you!

One last thing: go grab some free education!

Angela & Becca are giving away a free webinar recording of one of their popular workshops on Emotion, so head over if this is an area of struggle for you. It might really help!



From Lynn Nodima:


Hi, readers!

As a long-time user of Angela's and Becca's writer's thesauri (I love every book I have used), I was excited to be asked to help them launch their newly expanded book, The Emotion Thesaurus

Sometimes, writers need to get out of their heads to figure out how to write action in such a way that readers can understand the underlying tension without having to spell it out for them. Angela' and Becca's books are fantastic for that purpose. 

If you ever need to figure out what bodily action or reaction someone in a particular situation might display, this is the book for you.

I give this book my whole-hearted thumbs up!

Later,


Sunday, January 20, 2019

Super Blood Wolf Moon Special

Wolf's Destiny is FREE!


Super Blood Wolf Moon Special: Wolf's Destiny is FREE Jan. 20&21!


UPDATE: This sale is over. However, all the Texas Ranch Wolf Pack books are enrolled in Kindle Unlimited. With a Kindle Unlimited subscription (about $10 month) you can read them all, and many other authors books, at no extra cost.

For two days, January 20 & 21, Wolf's Destiny, the box set of the first six books in the Texas Ranch Wolf Pack Series is FREE!

This part of the series is starting to wind down, with only two books left. Wolf's Guard, my current work-in-progress, is number eleven and will be published as soon as I can get it completed.

The final book hasn't been named, yet, but will be available this spring.

If you haven't started reading this series, hurry! It's only free for two days.

(POST UPDATED 1/20/2019)



Here are the links to the book on Amazon:

USA: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B079WF6PC9/
Canada: https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B079WF6PC9/
United Kingdom: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B079WF6PC9/
Australia: https://www.amazon.com.au/dp/B079WF6PC9/

These are not affiliate links.

Later!