I want to thank everyone for being so patient for the last few (several?) weeks. Life has in fact been incredibly hectic but it is slowing down to it's normal chaotic pace and I will once again have at least a little time each day to return to writing. At least until the same time next year. Maybe I'll plan better next time and make sure I finish the story I'm working on BEFORE everything blows up around me. There will still be moments I'm sure (kids, house, job, etc.) but nothing like what I've had lately. So...I'm taking the rest of the day off today and starting back in the morning. Hopefully, you'll hear from me again soon. And thanks again V. You're wonderful. Don't know what I'd do without you!
First, I know, I lied when I said you wouldn't hear from me before Captured was finished. Sorry, but I wanted to let you know that first, I had some major computer issues (try dead computer - my fault entirely) and I lost many of the changes I made right before it died. Trying to go back in and make them now is proving a little frustrating. It's pushed me over into other deadlines both personal and professional that must be met. I'm working on it every free moment I have and will get it done.
Second, I don't know if you've heard, but Smashwords sent out an email to all authors, agents, and publishers of erotica letting everyone know that they had only a few days to pull stories involving psuedo-incest, bestiality, and rape for tittilation. Paypal is forcing the issue. If the titles aren't pulled, they will no longer do business with Smashwords and Smashwords cannot simply stop using Paypal. I understand that. Personally, it shouldn't impact me at this very moment since those are not the stories I write. However, Smashwords has already stated that they may pull stories by mistake if they believe the content meets the new definition of prohibited content. Since they cannot possibly read all of the stories, I have yet to figure out how they will pull off the stories that authors don't voluntarily pull. I guess we'll see. I suppose one thing that concerns me is that I realize in the future, Paypal may decide that they will no longer do business with anyone who buys or sells erotica. I personally don't like the type of stories that are currently being banned but I don't like that Paypal is refusing to let people buy them and make the payment using their service. They are simply too big and powerful and they know it. What happens when they won't let people buy or sell erotica? I like erotica and I know I'm not the only one. It bothers me a great deal that a company will decide what is morally acceptable for me to read and what is not. Oh, did I mention that as I understand it, it's only the erotica category that the changes apply to? If similar content shows up in a story in any another genre, it does not currently have to meet the new standards. It's all fiction folks. Now, do I think Smashwords can find a solution to this? Not in three days. Eventually, maybe. Yes, Smashwords makes payments by Paypal, but I opted for the good old fashioned paper check. I don't necessarily trust Paypal to actually give me my money. I've heard stories about them holding onto payments for one reason or another and yes, I realize those stories may not be true. I have no way of knowing, but I still prefer the check. My decision is a personal one. I've elected not to do business with Paypal unless there is simply no other way to make a payment. Yes, Paypal was easy, but I cannot personally support them if I can avoid it. Nearly every online store I normally order from will also take credit card payments. I know my business is so insignificant that Paypal won't care one way or another but I'll know. If you want to find out more, try TechCrunch. They picked up the story and also have a link to Smashwords. I'm not sure all of their information is correct but it's close.
First, I read Holding the Cards by Joey W. Hill. I thought the overall story was great and I think the author is very talented but it had a little too much fluff for my taste. I'm a "get on with it" reader so I get a little frustrated with a lot of description. And I'm not saying the whole story was like that because it wasn't. I did like the book and would recommend it, but I didn't love it and I think I would have if there'd been a little less fluff. Just my opinion.
Second, and I think this is pretty cool, Surrender made the iTunes erotica chart (24 yesterday) in the UK. Yeah, I know it's not much, but for me, it felt pretty damn good to have a story make any chart when it wasn't listed for free and there are no reviews outside of Smashwords. So, yep, I'm pleased.
Third, it's awfully damn cold here. At least 30 below (and no I never exaggerate). Ok, it feels like it's 30 below. I don't know why we got blasted but I'd really like for it to warm up. I'm going to spend most of my day indoors and plan to work on Captured. The last few days have been hectic and I'm pretty sure I have too many irons in the fire. I'm also trying to finish a painting for a friend and I really need to get caught up on housework. I'm stepping on lego pieces again and it requires a firm hand to get those pieces out of my floor. So, I'll do what I can to work on my writing.
Last, does anyone ever check Harley's blog on Eros? Apparently she posted a picture yesterday that caught some flack. I haven't read the whole story but curious person that I am, I wanted to see the picture. I'll say this. I can't imagine that anyone, regardless of age, sex, or sexual orientation would not think that photo was hot. And yeah, I know, you're probably wondering why I would think so since I said I don't like explicit photos. Well, I didn't mean I didn't like them, I said I wouldn't use them for my book covers. There's a difference. I don't want someone to buy my book just because it looks good. I've seen readers leave reviews based on the book cover alone when the story was truly awful. What's on the outside of the book has nothing to do with what's on the inside and no, I still won't use them. That's not to say I'll never consider using an erotic photo. I might, as long as it leaves plenty to the imagination and doesn't qualify as soft porn. And I can look at them all I like!
I added a page today that has a short survey and a contact form. Just trying to make it easy on you. The survey is extremely short and it's all optional. The contact form is actually separate from the survey. You're welcome to fill out one or both or neither. It's incredibly simple (I know because I tried it). So, check it out, fill it out, or ignore the thing. It's there if you want to give it a shot.
I finally found the iTunes link and it's now in the Retail Links drop down menu. Keep in mind, it takes a while before my books hit retailers after they've been published at Smashwords. Right now, it typically takes at least ten days before they're even approved for distribution and then it's probably a good two to three weeks from that time until they show up at retailers. Tamed has not made it to most yet. An Absolutely Incredible Valentine has not even been approved for distribution so it's unlikely to make it to retailers until after Valentine's Day. But, it's still at Smashwords and it's still free if you want to give it a read. I hope to have the rough draft of Captured finished in the next day or two but then it'll have to be edited so I'm still thinking at least a week and a half before it's even published at Smashwords. I'll let you know. I've got kid duty for much of today, you know, doing all of those things we as supportive parents are supposed to do. I'll enjoy it and it will get me out of the house. Into the rain I suppose, but at least out of the house.
I may have mentioned at some point that I have a relatively short attention span. If I didn't, I meant to. I think I also might suffer from selective short term memory loss. Actually, it has more to do with the 5,000 thoughts running through my head at any given moment. I frequently have these wonderful story ideas while I'm riding, but by the time I get home, they're gone. I'm working on Captured the next Indulgence story. I'm also working on two longer stories, I'd like for them to be full length novels but I never really know how long they'll be. V mentioned that she would have liked An Absolutely Incredible Valentine to be longer and I guess I never really thought about it. I always know where my stories will start and how they end but the journey to get there is never predetermined. So, sorry V, I probably could have made it longer if I'd been looking past my ending. Anyway, the two longer stories will obviously take longer to finish. But I like them both so we'll see. Captured is about half way done. I like it too. And in case you're wondering, no, I don't like every story I write. The ones I don't like end up filed away or in the trash. The other project I have going, I'm just not that committed to. It's a new story for Amazon. I just don't know that I'll follow through with publishing it there. Amazon will only allow an author to truly do some type of marketing if a title is listed exclusively with them for 90 days. I've been considering publishing a new story there just to try and jump start something with my other stories. Right now, they just sit there. That's not entirely true, but I've done much better at Smashwords than Amazon. The biggest problem seems to be getting people to give them a shot but I can't list a book for free on Amazon, they have a minimum list price of .99, so....what to do? Anyway, it's what I've been thinking about. So, if you get the urge, leave a review, hit the like button, tell a friend, something. My offer still stands for those of you want to provide me with feedback. I'll still give you one of the books for free. V is probably my biggest fan and anxiously waits for each story to come out. She is certainly the most verbal fan I have. I'm pretty sure I owe her more than a few free books by now. So, thanks V, sometimes when I feel like giving up, I think about the fact that you really do like them and I pull out my laptop and start working. I do get a few emails from others and so far the feedback has been good. I've only had two people complain but that was more about the graphic nature of the stories and I really feel that I was up front about that part. I personally like my stories so I won't defend them. I realize that they're not for everyone but based on the number of stories I've sold and given away at Smashwords alone, I'd say a lot of people like them. So, what's next? That is where I started right? I will probably finish Captured next unless I get hung up somewhere before I reach the end. Best guess right now, 1 1/2 or 2 weeks unless I get on a roll. Hey, stranger things have happened. I'll still be working on the others too. It's that short attention span thing. In the mean time, thanks for reading!
I finished Club Shadows, the first in her series Masters of the Shadowlands. If you enjoy the lighter romances, it's probably not for you. I won't tell you about the story, you can download the sample to check it out for yourself but if you like domination & submission and a little slap with your tickle, it's definitely worth your time and money. Nothing else I've read in the last few days really stands out but if I come across something, I'll let you know.
It's there. I hope you enjoy it. I make no promises since I still feel like three day old dog poo but what the hell. Let me know what you think. It won't be available on Amazon until I set a price and I'm just not going to do that for a while. Sorry but that's Amazon's rule, not mine. They simply won't allow an independent author to list for free unless you give them exclusive right to sell the content. I don't like it but there it is. Since they won't allow me to really market anything there anyway, my books mostly sit there so why should I care? See, still grumpy. Gotta run.
And V, thanks. For everything!
Things never seem to go as planned. It is finished though. I'm a little under the weather and my eyes are on fire. I guess it's my body's way of complaining about the nasty weather. I didn't drown in the monsoons we've been having and I haven't frozen to death yet so I guess it's only fair that I get sick. So I feel like crap and I'm grumpy. If I tried to upload it tonight, I'd probably screw the whole think up. So I'm going to wait until morning before I try to put the new story on Smashwords. It's longer than I really meant for it to be but it's like all the rest, I write it and cut the hell out of it, but in the end it is what it is. The story itself is about the same length as Surrender. It'll show up as being a little longer but it has an excerpt from Surrender at the end. The title... An Absolutely Incredible Valentine. Kind of sweet and sticky but it fits the story. So I hope you'll give it a go and let me know what you think.
Just wanted to let everyone know that I'm about to finish up a short story that I'll publish on Smashwords. It was originally a Valentine's story and I may leave it at that. I had planned to get it out sooner but I swear, sometimes the world conspires against me. I've had an excessive number of kid related responsibilities (all of their extracurricular activities) and I just haven't been able to get it done. But it's close. And, I'm gonna put it out there for free for a while. It's not quite as long as the Tales of Indulgence stories but longer than Friday Nights. I won't know the length for sure until I finish editing but hopefully that will be in the next day or so. I'll let you know.
Thanks for the recommendations.