Articles for the Month of August 2014

One day early–Haunting Danielle is at Amazon!

HautingDanielle (1)It wasn’t supposed to be out until tomorrow, but the first book in my new Haunting Danielle series is now available at Amazon.

It will be exclusively at Amazon for the next 90 days, so that means if you are taking advantage of Amazon’s new Kindle Unlimited program you can read the book for free.

As I’ve already mentioned, it is a little different from other books written under my Anna J. McIntyre pen name, which is why I added my real name to the cover.

I’ll confess, the series was inspired by two of my favorite ghost classics, Topper and The Ghost and Mrs. Muir.

 Click here to find it at Amazon.

How do you feel when your manuscript comes back from the editor?

iStock_000045546846SmallOver the weekend I received Haunting Danielle back from the editor. Actually the editor isn’t finished. She’s sending me a second corrected version mid-week. If all goes as plan, Haunting Danielle will be available on Amazon, September 1, 2014.

When I get a manuscript back from the editor I’m always curious to see if she left me any comments. Editors I use always edit in Word, using Track Changes and leave the comments along the right side of the page.

Comments tell me just how much work still needs to be done. This time she sent me on a few minor tasks, nothing major that will interfere with the deadline date. For that I am grateful.

While the manuscript has been off to the editor I haven’t been idle. I’ve started on Book 2 in the Haunting Danielle series, with a target publication date of November 1, 2014.

Haunting Danielle
eBook Coming to Amazon Sept. 1, 2014

Haunting Danielle small ebook_edited-2When Danielle Boatman inherits Marlow House, she dreams of turning it into a seaside bed and breakfast. Since she’s never visited the property, Danielle’s not sure what awaits her in Oregon. She certainly doesn’t expect to find one of the house’s previous owners still in residence. After all, the man has been dead for almost ninety years—shouldn’t he have moved on by now?

Charming Walt Marlow convinces Danielle the only way he can move on is if she solves the mystery of his death. Danielle soon discovers her real problems may come from the living—those who have their sights on Marlow House’s other secrets.

The haunting is the least of her problems.

Walt Danielle_edited-1
Charming Walt Marlow convinces Danielle the only way he can move on is if she solves the mystery of his death. Danielle soon discovers her real problems may come from the living—those who have their sights on Marlow House’s other secrets.

Haunting Danielle, Coming September 1, 2014



Inside Haunting Danielle

SONY DSCI’ve created the fictitious seaside town of Fredrickport, Oregon for my new Haunting Danielle series. I try to set my stories in locales I’m familiar with. Our son lives in Portland, and during one of our last trips we took a drive along the coast, even stopping by the Astoria house used in Goonies to snap a few pictures. I thought the Oregon coast would be a perfect setting for Haunting Danielle.

In my Coulson Series, the fictitious town of Coulson was patterned after my hometown of Lake Havasu City, Arizona, even down to how it was founded. Sugar Rush was actually set in Lake Havasu City, and While Snowbound was inspired by a mountain community we once lived in, Wrightwood, California.

I’ve been working on the book’s blurb—or book description—for the first book in the series, and this is what I have so far:

If the old house doesn’t need too much renovation, Danielle Boatman intends to turn it into a Bed and Breakfast. Since she has never visited the property, she’s not sure what awaits her in Oregon. One thing she doesn’t expect to find is one of the house’s previous owners still in residence. After all, the man has been dead for almost ninety years—shouldn’t he have moved on by now?

Cover Reveal for Haunting Danielle

HautingDanielle (1)Haunting Danielle is off to the editor, and is scheduled to be released September 1, 2014. It is the first book in my new series of the same name—Haunting Danielle.

You might notice something a little different about the author name on the cover—or should I say, authors’ names.

Because Haunting Danielle is a little different from my other McIntyre books, I was tempted to publish this series under my real name, Bobbi Holmes. I kept going back and forth—unsure what I wanted to do, until I finally decided I’d put both names on the cover.

I’ll tell you a little about the story in my next post.

The cover is by the very talented Elizabeth Mackey — and not only is the cover design hers, so is the original illustration.

Tell me the year you first read Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander

photo (42)When I was a teenager you wouldn’t find celebrity posters on my wall. Had I been a little older and made it to a Beatle’s concert during their prime, you wouldn’t find me jumping up and down excitedly, tears running down my face. Fact is, I’m not much of a fangirl. Just not my style.

There is one exception—the author Diana Gabaldon. A couple of my author friends have attended conferences with Gabaldon and when they mention seeing her, I tend to go all fangirl on them.

I often joke that I was the original fan who made Gabaldon famous. After all, there had to be a first, right?

It was back in the early nineties and I had joined one of those book clubs. Remember them? Back before eBooks became the thing. You’d join the club and select five or six books that they would send you for free and then every month they would send you a new book.

Always a sucker for time travel, I chose Outlander as one of my freebees. Until the book club, I had never heard of Outlander or of Gabaldon.

When I finished reading Outlander I immediately started looking for other books in the series. I also started telling everyone I knew about it. At the restaurant I managed for my parents, I convinced one of our servers to read the book. She became an avid Gabaldon fan and told all her friends they had to read the series.

I got my sister, Lynn, to read Outlander. She fell in love with Jamie and went on to tell all her friends about the books. For several of my birthdays Lynn bought me hardback editions of the series—the first two were signed by Gabaldon.

The entire thing snowballed—we would tell someone they had to read the first book in the series, and after they did, they would in turn tell their friends.

Two decades after reading Outlander, I was discussing books with my daughter-in-law, who is an avid reader. I told her she had to read Diana Gabaldon’s series. It turned out she already had—and it was one of her favorites.

As a writer, I’ve naturally been inspired—and humbled—by Diana Gabaldon the author. It wasn’t long after I read Outlander that I sat down and wrote Lessons, now entitled Coulson’s Lessons, which is the third book in my Coulson’s Series. While Lessons is nothing like Oulander, I will confess the location of Alexandra and Garret’s honeymoon was inspired by Outlander.

I learned they were making Outander into a movie from my sister, Lynn. In July we signed up for Starz. I ended up watching the first episode twice. Lynn watched it three times.

While I would love to think I am THE fan who got the snowball going on the Outlander Series, I accept the fact it is simply my delusion. But just in case it is not a delusion, answer two questions for me.

1. What year did you first read Outlander?
2. How did you first learn of the book?

The Amazon Hachette wars. Why boycotting is not the answer.

Are booksellers the Kosher of retailers, in that they answer to a higher power? What they offer their customers are guided not by what they want to put on their shelves, but by some higher moral ground guided by the Literature God.

That’s the only explanation I can come up after reading author Douglas Preston’s open letter regarding the Amazon Hachette Dispute where he writes, “As writers — most of us not published by Hachette — we feel strongly that no bookseller should block the sale of books or otherwise prevent or discourage customers from ordering or receiving the books they want.”

By that statement one would assume Amazon is making it impossible for readers to get one of Preston’s Hachette published books. But I just checked, and I found his books over at Barnes and Noble, iTunes and Kobo. I even found his books on Amazon, so I’m not sure which of his books Amazon is keeping customers from ordering.

Basically, publisher Hachette wants to sell its product at Amazon’s store, under Hachette’s terms. I naively was under the impression a retailer in America has the right to decide what product to put on its shelves. When Acme Sofa Company opens it doors and decides its customers will pay up to $300 for a couch, it has the right not to stock the higher end sofas going for $2,000, especially if they believe the $300 sofas are the same quality as the $2,000 sofas, and don’t believe gouging their customers is in their best interest.

What also leaves me shaking my head is when Preston writes, “It is not right for Amazon to single out a group of authors, who are not involved in the dispute, for selective retaliation.” Interesting to me he forgets how bookstores routinely boycott authors under Amazon publishing labels. He isn’t outraged how books by independent authors are routinely excluded from bookstores.

Personally, I wish Amazon would let Hachette set its ridiculously high prices. But it’s their store, and their rules, something I understood the day I signed up to publish on Amazon’s platform.

While I don’t always agree with Amazon’s policies, I do appreciate the fact that it has enabled authors like me to make a living doing what we love, especially during these precarious economic times. When someone like Hachette published celebrity Stephen Colbert—whom I have always liked—starts advocating boycotting Amazon, I can’t help but get pissed. Does he not realize how many authors—thousand’s of them, just like me—rely on their income from Amazon to pay their bills. Basic things, like put food on our tables, pay for our utilities.

Sure, my products are on other platforms, but if consumers actually listened to Colbert, my income would drop significantly and it would take a while (if ever) before I could get the level of sales at the other venues. I don’t imagine Colbert’s lifestyle will be impacted from this dispute—but a successful Colbert boycott of Amazon could certainly impact mine and many other independent authors.

This morning when searching online for news on the Amazon Hachette Dispute, I found countless articles urging a boycott of Amazon. If Douglas Preston and the others are so concerned for their fellow authors, I would think they’d ask consumers to continue shopping Amazon during this dispute—unless of course they agree with Colbert’s cry to boycott.

This is the one time the annoying Corporations are people too actually makes sense, in that there are thousands of mom and pop type publishing houses out there who publish on Amazon. Authors who have found their readers, and rely on Amazon’s platform to get their products out there. When you boycott Amazon you are hurting these folks—authors, who unlike the top one percent, can’t afford to weather such an economic loss.

Selecting a book by its cover…

ShelfbuzWhen surfing this morning I came across the Shelf Buzz website. To my delight I found my Sundered Hearts book cover (by cover artist Elizabeth Mackey) as one of its picks for : Handpicked Kindle Books for Jul 16 Judged by Their Covers.

After looking around the website I found another Elizabeth Mackey cover, that one for a book by author George Wier. For those who don’t know, Elizabeth is my daughter, as well as my cover designer. But she doesn’t just design book covers for her mom – she has some pretty impressive clients on her list. To check out a sampling of Elizabeth’s work, visit her website.