Popstars, Friends & Lovers are Headed Your Way

So, this was me on Friday.

I finished the first draft of Popstars, Friends & Lovers: a dreamer’s tale. I’ve been writing like a woman possessed for the past month. If anyone has been wondering why I haven’t called or written or texted it’s  because when I set a deadline, I hit a deadline. And because I was dying to share this story with everyone who has told me they are waiting for it. 

There is still some work to be done. I am shopping for a proofreader, working with the goddesses at Deranged Doctor Designs on a cover and having it beta read. But we will get there, my latest labor of love will be available as an e-book (at first) and I’m here to make the big announcement today. 

Mark your calendars.
To prepare you for this sequel to my debut novel I am going to be sharing the first few chapters of Burnouts, Geeks & Jesus Freaks: a love story on my blog.  Starting next Monday. This might inspire any of you sitting on the fence to read book one before book two (always works better that way). 
Then …. I will also post the first few chapters of Popstars on this blog in the weeks before the release. 
Finally … I will debut the cover for Popstars here, on my blog. 

In other words …. keep an eye on this blog.

 

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Indie Gems

This past week was a great one to be an Indie author. It started with me participating in a birthday bash on the Pretty Little Pages blog. The creator, Kristen, was celebrating her own birthday by celebrating her favorite Indie authors. I was lucky enough to be one of them.(There is still a fantastic giveaway going on over there until September 2nd!)

Kristen is one of the somewhat rare group of reviewers who not only will accept and review self-published work, but she is actively promoting good Indie authors. She really is at the front of the pack doing work that takes more time and effort, but I believe, gives bigger rewards. Of the hundreds of review requests a blogger receives each week, many will be poorly edited books with weak story lines from self-published authors. There are a ton of them out there because it’s amazingly easy to put a book on Amazon. But hidden in this huge pile are a few real gems, books with strong stories, great characters, solid editing and a unique perspective. Kristen has taken the time and (huge) effort to find these. When you are looking for your next book, check out her blog for suggestions.

But being part of this esteemed group also made me remember one of the best reasons you should give Indie authors a try – we take risks, we present new and refreshing perspectives and unique stories. Publishing houses are not taking risks right now. Their hundreds-of-years-old business model is crumbling quickly in the electronic age and they are not about to invest time and money in anything unique, risky or different. They want tried, true, established, (cliche, formulaic). 

I started writing because I wanted to read something new. I love romance books, but I just couldn’t take one more syrupy-sweet heroine and her bad-boy (more like asshole) hero who try and sell me that they are in love when I’m getting chapter after chapter of nothing but descriptions about how hot they both are. I wrote the book I wanted to read. And so did a lot of other writers. And they are good. 

This week inspired me to keep writing, to get more connected to other Indie authors and keep building our community and to support the Indie authors that I love. From working with review blogs I’ve discovered a few gems myself. If you are looking for a Labor Day weekend read why not give one of these a try. And if you are as impressed as I was, please leave them a review and help spread the word.

Knockout by Tracey Ward.  I am only 40% into this book and it is my first by this author, but I am already impressed. I had to force myself to stop reading in order to write this post. It will be a struggle all day to keep myself from getting lost in this story. Fantastic drama, great characters, so far a good story line.

 

Archer’s Voice by Mia Sheridan. This is a truly sweet love story that will not make you nauseous. The author manages to create a heart-warming, unique story that never crosses the line into sappy. Completely unique characters in a story that had me yelling at my kindle, hoping for a happy ending. 

Tangled by Emma Chase. This romance is completely written from the male perspective and its a good thing because if you didn’t know what was going on in this guy’s head you would hate him. As it is, you get a truly funny perspective on love and lust. The heroine is also one of my favorites. She is witty, smart, strong, real. 

 

Frenched by Melanie Harlow. I not only fell in love with these characters, I fell in love (again) with Paris. 

Happy Reading!


High As A Kite I Just Might Stop To Check You Out

How I see Steve **

Long title today, but I couldn’t resist the Violent Femmes reference.  It goes with the territory I’ve been in lately.  I’m working on Popstars, Friends & Lovers the sequeal to Burnouts, Geeks & Jesus Freaks: a love story. So I’m spending a lot of time with my favorite burnout, Steve Shrader. He is often high as a kite and today’s the day we will stop to check him out. 

In a way Steve is the Midwest version of Spicoli from Fast Times at Ridgemont High. He’s the funny, charming guy who cruises through high school on a perpetual high. Other students think he’s funny and teachers like him more than they would ever admit.  That is definitely part of this character and the side that he shows the world. But as book one progresses and into book two we learn that he is so much more complicated that what he lets you see.

A big part of his character is that he loves girls. Sure all guys say they do, but it borders on obsession with Steve. (See my 10/3/13 post – A Primer on Men Who Love Women) This overwhelming need to connect to females comes from the lack of any female in his early life. He’s never known his mother and only briefly connected to one of his dad’s girlfriends. He spends time with and studies girls. He flirts with any female he comes across because he loves to make them smile. And all that studying and flirting make him an amazing lover, even at sixteen. He’s not a player, looking to see how many girls he can score with. He’s an aficionado of all things female who can’t resist getting to study the objects of his desire.  

And the one he connects with most is MG. His laid back side is drawn to her hell-bent need to have fun. He’s her perfect partner in crime, willing to go along and support all her schemes. He’s more than happy to just bask in her glow, never needing the spotlight she craves. But MG wants more from life than he can (or is willing to) offer. 

Book two is Steve and MG’s story, but also a story about dreams. The problem with Steve is that he just doesn’t have any. He was raised without expectations or permission to hope for anything more than a third shift life moving boxes at a warehouse. His laid back nature works against him and he just lets life happen to him. Until something pushes him to take the reins of his own life and go after what he truly dreams of. 

The surprising side to Steve Shrader is his passion. I can’t wait for everyone to get to see this side of him this November when I tell his story.  

Memorial Day Giveaway

The Burnouts, Geeks & Jesus Freaks want you to have the perfect beach bag this summer.  It’s cute, big and lets the world know you love a good love story.  

You can enter to win starting at Midnight, Central time on Monday, May 26, 2014.  The contest ends at Midnight on May 27th.  It is open to U.S. residents only (sorry international readers, I love you, but shipping charges, eeek).  One bag will be given away in this promotion.

The winner will be chosen at random by Rafflecopter and notified via social media.  The winner will need to provide a mailing address to me (Karen Gordon) via Joiedemidvivre@gmail.com. I will not share your personal email address or use it for any other promotional purposes (’cause I hate that stuff!)

Spread the words so your friends can enter to win too and thank you for all your support.

a Rafflecopter giveaway