dreams

All posts tagged dreams

Edits!!!

Published March 9, 2012 by Lorraine Nelson - Author

As you know, if you’ve been following my blog, website, Facebook or Twitter accounts, I signed 5 contracts in January. Since January 30th I’ve completed 12 rounds of edits. Yep, 12! Three titles are completely done. Yay!

Coming March 16th!

Hawk’s Woman, my first western historical, is releasing March 16th in the Evernight anthology entitled Virgins Behaving Badly.

Coming March 26th!

A Cowgirl’s Pride, Book 4 in my Thunder Creek Ranch series, is releasing on March 26th.

Breathless Press has signed on for 4 titles. Her Unlikely Bodyguard is edited and ready for release on June 15th. The 1st round edits on Blessed Homecoming, my first inspirational, are finished and I’m waiting for the next round. Then it’s on to Love on the Rocks, a romantic suspense, and Finding Baby J, a medical romance.

At first, I considered edits to be a nuisance, a necessary evil. LOL But I’ve learned so much through my lovely editors, that now I consider them, the editors and the edits, a blessing. Their input has made for a much more detailed and interesting read in every case.

I love dialogue! When I get into the heads of my characters, or them in mine as the case often happens, I enjoy writing up their conversations. Unfortunately, I forget about everything else when that happens, but my editors are quick to remind me about all 5 senses. It’s not enough to know what they’re saying. What are they seeing, feeling, touching, smelling, doing while they talk? Or tasting…my characters enjoy eating. lol

Then there is the comma guru. Since I obtained my business education back in 1980, someone up and changed some of the rules of comma usage. Not sure when that happened, but I’m learning, slow but sure, and hoping my editors don’t pull their hair out in the meantime. So far, they haven’t run away screaming, so it’s all good. 🙂

Sometimes I disagree with them and have to question the why of things, but in the end, we compromise and carry on. I love my editors! Emma Shortt, Dana Horbach, and Tara Chevrestt. They know how to draw every ounce of love and suspense out in the open, which makes for a much better, more saleable novel.

I’m living my dream, and with the support of editors, publishers, and most importantly, my readers, it makes all the hard work worthwhile. I can work from home, at my own pace, crafting beautiful, believable stories of romance and suspense. For me, life couldn’t get any better.

So, until my next set of edits arrive, I’ll be writing Cameron’s Quest, Book 5 of my Thunder Creek Ranch series. He’s been screaming at me to get his story told…a story of secrets unveiled, family love and loyalty, and murder. Hoping to have it written, subbed, and edited for a May release. Time will tell.

In the meantime, I’d like to thank you all for your support.

Happy Reading and Writing!

New Cover Art from Evernight!

Published February 24, 2012 by Lorraine Nelson - Author

Coming Soon From Evernight!

It’s hard to believe that less than 5 months ago I was still an unpublished author. So much has happened since then, and I find it all so exciting! Even the edits excite me; the editor’s insights often helping to fine tune my work into a richer, deeper, more suspenseful, and sometimes hotter, story.

I’m even learning how to successfully promote my work. LOL (Read: Becoming a Facebook addict. )

My journey as a published author began on October 5th, 2011, with the release of Zakia and the Cowboy, Book 1 in my Thunder Creek Ranch series. It became an ARe Bestseller and Featured Title within 3 days of its release. It also won Book of the Month at TBR, a major review site, in December.

October 13th saw my first effort at self-publishing hit Amazon with my novella, His Christmas Wish, and it has done really well. It’s a sweet romance and at $.99, a real bargain.

Mistletoe & Mr. Hoe became available for sale on November 15th through Amazon. I offered this one as a free read over Christmas to thank my readers, and an astounding 2,491 copies were downloaded in 5 days! I hope everyone enjoyed it. 🙂

Book 2 in my Thunder Creek Ranch series, Covert Mission: Undercover Cop, released on November 28th, with Book 3, Trouble Brewing in Thunder Creek, following on January 6th.

I’m honored that one of my shorts was accepted. Hawk’s Woman, a  western historical short, will be included in the Evernight anthology, Virgins Behaving Badly, scheduled for a March release.

Now it’s almost time for Book 4, A Cowgirl’s Pride. First round edits have been completed and returned and cover art received. I love my cowboys, but I really like this cover! It speaks of romance, suspense, and ranch life. Sour Cherry Designs did a great job on this one.

I’m totally excited about the release of A Cowgirl’s Pride. Luke’s sister, Leah, returns to the ranch, pregnant and alone. I truly enjoyed telling her story. I hope you’ll enjoy reading it just as much. 🙂 Hoping for a March release. I’ll keep you posted.

Breathless Press contracted 3 of my novels in January. Her Unlikely Bodyguard, releasing in June; Blessed Homecoming, due out in July, and Love on the Rocks, scheduled for August.

Somewhere in there will be Cameron’s Quest, Thunder Creek Ranch Book 5. I’m still uncertain whether to end the series there, or keep it going. There are plenty more ideas rolling around in my brain, so maybe I’ll keep writing until they play themselves out. LOL

So, by August this will make 11 books released in 10 months. It wouldn’t make sense or be worth anything at all if not for my readers and the feedback I’ve received. Thank you for enjoying my work enough to ask for more! You’re helping to make a lifelong dream come true! Love you all!

For blurbs and excerpts on all of these books, visit my website at: http://lorrainenelson.weebly.com

NaNoWriMo!

Published October 18, 2011 by Lorraine Nelson - Author

Two weeks from today signals the start of a month-long writing frenzy. Yep, folks, November is National Novel Writing Month. One full month in which you aim to write 50,000 words. That’s 1667 words per day. You write and write and write without stopping to edit (if you can) until you finish your first draft.

It’s a great motivator! I’ve participated the past two years and have had excellent word counts. Normally, I edit as I go, but during NaNo, I try hard not to… try being the operative word. LOL

So, are you up for NaNoing this year? What will you be writing? Do you have a particular genre you enjoy? Contemporary, Romance, thrillers, young adult? Any ideas as to characters and plot; conflict and resolution?

I’m hoping to finish books 2 and 3 of my Thunder Creek series (contemporary romantic suspense genre) by the end of October as book 4 is calling to me – quite loudly in fact. I haven’t even started it yet, so that would be an excellent NaNo project.

Whatever you decide, if you want to be a writer, then write. That’s the only way you’ll ever reach that goal and fulfill your dream. Happy writing!

Featured Title AND Bestseller!!!

Published October 9, 2011 by Lorraine Nelson - Author

Zakia and the Cowboy is a featured title and also made the Bestseller List at All Romance eBooks! http://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-zakiaandthecowboy-608452-149.html

Wow! Thank you to all those who have purchased my novel to date. You’ve made all the waiting and agonizing worthwhile. 🙂

Writing is a hobby which I truly enjoy, especially now that I can share my stories with the world. Isn’t the Internet a wonderful thing? I’ve made friends from all over and, I suspect, now my readers/fans. I love you all!

I’m so thankful for the day I subbed to Evernight Publishing. They have a terrific staff and my editor, Emma Shortt, is awesome. And the cover art is to die for! Thank you Dara England of LF Designs. It’ll make a terrific poster for my home office, don’t you think? And thank you, Evernight, for taking a chance on this newbie. Words simply cannot express how thrilled I am to be one of your authors.

During the course of this past couple of years, I’ve spent a lot of time on Medical leave from my day job. I won’t bore you with the details of each ailment except to say that hand surgery is what motivated me to begin writing that novel of romance I’d always intended to try my hand at. (pun intended!)

I developed an infection in my thumb and by the time the doctors realized what it was, it had eaten away at the bone from the inside. Needless to say, they had to amputate so the infection didn’t spread. Everything I do involves the use of my hands, from typing to cooking, baking, gardening and even reading. It’s difficult to get used to holding a book open with half a thumb. Luckily, it was my left and I’m right-handed, but it still took some getting used to.

In trying to prepare for a return to work, I started typing. It helped to increase the flexibility in that hand and kept me from going stir crazy. At first, it was just online typing tests, but one day an idea began to take shape and I started writing. Seven weeks later I had finished Love on the Rocks, totally edited and polished to the best of my ability and began subbing to publishers. Boy, have I learned a lot since and have received many rejections for my efforts.

But I found that I really enjoyed writing – enjoyed the challenge of it, learning as I went. I’m still learning. Nobody’s perfect. I’ve since written seven other full-length novels and three novellas.

Zakia and the Cowboy is the first in my Thunder Creek series, with Books 2 and 3 in the works and ideas for 2 more. I enjoy crafting stories and it’s helps to keep my mind alive. There are so many ideas floating around in there that at least once I have them written down, they ease off and let me rest… sometimes. lol

My doctor has me off work indefinitely, but at least I have my writing to sustain me. Making money from it was never an impetus. Creating a believable story from nothing more than a vague idea – that’s what motivates me. The fact that people want to read my writing is a bonus, and one that I’m rather proud of. I love hearing from my readers and can be contacted by dropping a comment here or on my website. Tell me what you like or didn’t like about this book and I’ll enter all names in a draw for the sequel. http://lorrainenelson.weebly.com

*** P.S. When that first royalty cheque arrives, I’m certain I’ll find something to spend it on. 🙂

New Release from Evernight Publishing!

Published October 5, 2011 by Lorraine Nelson - Author

Zakia and the Cowboy

on sale now!

Writing – my passion, my dream. I started writing adult fiction as a hobby almost three years ago while on medical leave for hand surgery. With the aim of gaining more flexibility in my fingers, I began typing. I just sat at the computer and started writing. J When I finished that first manuscript seven weeks later, I was thrilled! Then came the process of editing, tweaking, and polishing until I felt it was ready to send.

 Boy, was I wrong!!!

Needless to say, I’ve suffered through my share of rejections, but instead of giving up, they made me more determined to succeed. I’ve joined several writing groups and forums and have made many online friends, people who have been supportive and encouraging throughout this journey. By nature, writing is a lonely job, so it helps to have people with whom you can share with and do a little brainstorming. Except when the characters start talking to me. LOL That’s when I can immerse myself in the tale and write for hours on end, crafting their story their way.

With the help of a terrific editor at Wild Rose Press, I discovered where my writing lacked substance, studied those areas, kept writing, revising and submitting. I’ve entered contests and pitches, even won a couple, but publication still evaded me… until this past July when perseverance paid off.

It wasn’t a call that came, per se, but an email. Evernight Publishing wanted my book. So, by receiving an email notification I didn’t have to stutter excitedly through a phone call and embarrass myself, but without speaking directly to someone on the publishing end, it didn’t really feel real – until I opened another email that Sunday night and saw my cover. Squee! Fantastic!

I’d been waiting on the edits/revisions to come in and wasn’t expecting to see any cover art, especially at11:30 pm on a Sunday night. My surprise was immediate and vocal. My son came running, alarmed, but smiled when he saw the cover. Everything had happened so fast!

On July 17th I subbed my manuscript to Evernight, on the 18th I received the contract, signed and returned it on the 20th and on the 25th, received the covers. No matter how you look at it, this team is super efficient. Marketing and promotion commenced with the release of the covers and my first book, Zakia and the Cowboy, comes out today.  

It’s been a pleasure to share my journey with you. I hope this serves as inspiration to other writers to just keep learning, writing, and submitting; and for my readers, provide a little “behind the scenes” info.

Post a comment or question for your chance to win a free download of Zakia and the Cowboy. Check my blog schedule in yesterday’s post to follow along and enter a few more times, increasing your chances of winning. I’m giving away one free download at every stop along the way. Winners will be announced the following day.  

*Please Note: Evernight Publishing is experiencing temporary problems with their website, but Zakia and the Cowboy is available at Amazon. http://www.amazon.com/dp/B005SEUZVW

Now, I’ll open this up and welcome questions…always hoping I have the answers. Lol Thanks for helping me celebrate this momentous day.

Zakia and the Cowboy is now at Amazon!!!

Published October 4, 2011 by Lorraine Nelson - Author

I’d like to say a big Thank You to the staff at Evernight Publishing for helping me realize a life-long dream. Emma Shortt is one of the best editors ever! And Dara England did up a spectacular cover! This is all so exciting.

A special thank you to my fans who have been patiently waiting for Zakia and Luke’s story. Enjoy!

Zakia and the Cowboy is now at Amazon!!! http://www.amazon.com/dp/B005SEUZVW#reader_B005SEUZVW

Also, drop by and like my author page on FB for a chance to win a free copy.  https://www.facebook.com/LorraineNelson.Author

Welcome New Author, Ju Dimello!

Published October 4, 2011 by Lorraine Nelson - Author

I consider it a privilege to have my good friend, Ju Dimello, here today to share her call story. We met online in 2009 and have become the best of friends. To be signing contracts within a few weeks of each other just feels so right. She’s hosting my pre-launch party today at her blog. Please welcome Ju and leave some comment love.

First off, I have to give a big, sloppy smooch to Lorraine, who wanted me partying on her blog on the same day she is having a pre-launch party at mine 😉 Head on over, to say “hi” to her for a chance to win her debut release! And read on while I extol the virtues of a quality that Author Michelle Styles often repeats.

 Perseverance does have its merits…

 Like all other writers, I don’t want to start by saying how many “years” I’ve been writing… Needless to say, it’s been on and off for ages, just tinkering around without an aim, and frankly, it might sound like forever. During the second half of 2009, I decided to become serious about it. I did, creating my online id : Ju Dimello, the aspiring author, and got involved in online writer activities—like getting critique partners, joining a group of fellow writers etc. And the funny thing was, I believed my writing had some merit.. Gah! I still envy my own blissful ignorance, and also wish I had some of that blind confidence left!

 Frankly, I’m happy that no one gave me a contract for those initial stories of mine. I still cringe looking back at those “learning” manuscripts. 

 The fog around my eyes cleared soon enough, from the time I hit “submit”. I’ve garnered a cartload of R’s which are all “starred”, labeled as “important” in my gmail, as souvenirs along my journey towards publication. There were, of course, countless times when I just wanted to give up, endless moments of “I’m writing cr*p” and I trudged on because of the sheer encouragement given by my online friends. (If you’re reading this, you know who y’all are.) I’m really glad I did continue to learn, panst (the pantser equivalent of plot), write, lather, rinse, repeat…. 

 Writing is a hard, lonely task. Of course, some writers can’t not write. I always need an end goal so I can focus on what I’m working at – For eg, I don’t think I could write if I didn’t dream of getting published. 

 There were times when I wondered, “What the heck am I doing?” I have a blog, I have great followers. Let me not mention twitter, FB, goodreads account, etc, but for what purpose? It isn’t enough if our CP’s, or acquaintances (whom you beg to read your book once) declare it’s fabulous. 

 Then I realized one thing… a tiny thing that seemed so obvious once I thought about it. I have surrounded myself with online friends who’re serious about books (both reading and writing, not to mention reviewing), so that even if I wanted to tuck tail and run, they wouldn’t allow me. Some, well – yeah, like Lorraine, might happily grab me by the neck and throw me back to the wolves 😉 if I as much as gave her a chance, which I didn’t, thankfully!  She’s a real motivator in that sense.

Well, someone had to threaten with the proverbial boot up the keister! LOL

 Honestly, there were more than enough times when I was ready to throw the towel down and call it a day. But then some tidbit would crop up somewhere—like an online buddy sold a book, got a fantastic review, or even got a horrible review (those made me realize that even pubbed authors don’t have it any easier)… And that poked me, prodded me to keep going. I wouldn’t say I wasn’t green with jealously, or that I was a saint who took every piece of news with a smiling face. I’d be happy and sad at the same time, confused about my own feelings, and once again, I’d pick up the pen (or open the word document), trying to enter into the heads of my characters. 

 The happiest moments were when the characters spoke to me and I lost myself in their stories. (Gotta love it when that happens.) Of course, many are shelved, never to see the light of day again, but then… who knows… the characters might pop up again, this time with a new story to tell and maybe I can do them justice some day. 

 Now that I have a contract from Ellora’s Cave for my ménage story, I’m literally over the moon! Frankly, I thought getting the “YES” from a dream publisher was the “destination” of this publishing journey and had expected to surround myself with pizzas and ice cream, pass my days in total bliss. I know you’re snickering there at my innocent assumption, but well… 

Yeah, quite the assumption…cover art, edits, more edits, promo….

 The fun part of making the sale stays until we get the contract, after which I have to think about a lot of stuff, like creating websites, tackling edits, plan for the sequel (and write it too!) Means, I have to bury myself in the writing cave once again! The only difference now is knowing there’s an editor interested in my work, knowing that I’ll have readers in a few more weeks/months makes the entire journey worthwhile. (Oh, and the royalty checks of course!)

Please… don’t forget to send the cheques! LOL

 I’ll sign off this post with another saying that rang true to me. “There is no lift for success. One has to take the stairs.” Am I glad I did 🙂 (And in case you’re wondering…yes, I’m still walking a couple of feet above the ground

Oh, I like that!

 I really want to thank Lorraine for giving me this chance to celebrate with her.

 PS: I’m still awed by her productivity (I’ve dubbed her as a ninja robot)!

LOL!!! Ju!

Thank you for joining me today. It’s been great!