What a Year! - 2014 Review
What a Year!
It’s been quite a year, full of various news encompassing new book releases, interviews, giveaways, awards as well as fun promos and excerpts! I can’t tell everything as simply too much happened (for a more detailed account of everything, you can check the back issues of my newsletter), but I can give you a brief overview month by month.
The Year 2014
In January, my first historical romance, Upon Your Return, got a week-long spotlight on the Seasons of Love blog.
Here is one guest post and two excerpts from the book to give you an idea of how it went. On January 12th, Fara Bellamont, the female main character got a character interview on Kathleen Janz-Anderson’s blog. I wrote a poem a few days later and it was dedicated to my fiancé. Also in January, I found out that I was a runner-up and finalist in the MARSocial’s Author of the Year Competition. This video shows the books of the finalists. Later in the month, I learned that Upon Your Return was nominated in the Readers’ Choice Awards on the Time for Love Blog. On January 27th, I wrote a nature-themed poem called “Gentle Giant”.
On February 2nd, I discovered that I won “Honorable Mention” in the Readers’ Choice Awards for January of 2014. The following day I wrote a blog post about the difference between the way authors and readers picture characters, and the way the covers end up. In February, I found a surprise interview on Wanton Reads that posted in December of 2013, but I didn’t know about it until later. In February, two excerpts were posted on Eat Sleep Write, one from Leather Lace by my alternate pen name Erica Sutherhome, and one from Upon Your Return. On February 14th, I did a blog post about the “first kiss” in a relationship as well as a book giveaway. Five days later, Fara Bellamont was spotlighted in a character interview on Snow Tigra’s blog. On February 21st, the I Love Romance Blog had its official launch. On February 23rd, I offered some information about, as well as an excerpt from A Touch of Dawn, another book published under my pen name Erica Sutherhome.
On March 1st, I wrote a blog post saluting women. On March 2nd, Magick & Moonlight, my contemporary romantic fantasy novella, was released through Solstice Shadows Publishing.
A few days later, I did a guest blog post about “secrets” on the Seasons of Love blog. This was part of a week-long spotlight for Leather and Lace, a romantic suspense novel, which also included a few excerpts like this one.
On March 10th, Magick & Moonlight (or the more affectionately name M&M) received its first review here. Two days later, I got some wonderful news! I found out that Upon Your Honor, the sequel to Upon Your Return, was accepted by Solstice Publishing and they offered me a book contract.
On March 13th, Leather and Lace received a spotlight on Exquisite Quills’ Genesis of a Book section, in which I discussed how the book came about and what challenges I faced in writing it. Also in March, Magick & Moonlight got a spotlight on Fiction Hideaway complete with a small excerpt. On March 24th, I was in an author interview on The Writers Shack. Three days later, I participated in “my writing process” blog tour and tagged eight other authors, some of whom I met through my work on the Writing in the Modern Age blog.
On March 28th, I hosted a big multi-author book giveaway on the same blog.
On April 6th, I wrote a love poem dedicated to my fiancé. Also in April, Jessie from M&M got a character interview on the Reader Show, which posted on the International Book Promotion blog. Angie from Leather and Lace also got a character interview on Snow Tigra’s blog three days later. In the same month, M&M received a great four star review on Readers’ Favorite. On April 14th, I had an author interview on the Dropped Pebbles blog. The following day I had an author spotlight on the MARSocial Author Business Enhancement Interviews blog. Devika Fernando was kind enough to interview me the next day on her blog. On April 19th, I wrote another love poem in honor of the man I love. Also on April 19th, David Burnett of the Kindle Book Review offered a great five star review for Upon Your Return.
On April 20th, I had an author and book interview on The Indie View. On that very day, the second book of the Heiresses in Love Series, Upon Your Honor, was released through Summer Solstice Publishing.
On April 24th, I wrote an article about Twitter. On April 25th, the awesome Christi Williams offered a spotlight for Upon Your Honor complete with an excerpt on her blog. On April 26th, Writing in the Modern Age received the Liebster blogger award. On the same day, Upon Your Honor received its first five star review. And to round out the month, here were some teasers I posted for Upon Your Honor.
On May 2nd, I wrote a love poem dedicated to my fiancé. A few days later, Upon Your Honor got a little spotlight on V.L. Locey’s blog. You can check out the thrilling post and excerpt here. On May 11th, I gave an account of my publishing journey on the Story Reading Ape blog. On May 12th, I learned that I was included in the Poets & Writers directory. Here is my listing there.
Author Nancy Wood interviewed me on her blog on May 16th. On May 18th, I had an author interview on Belinda Y. Hughes’ blog. A couple of days later, I wrote an article about “appropriate social media behavior”. On May 27th, I did an hour long spotlight for the books in the Heiresses in Love Series during the Cliffhanger Press grand opening party on Facebook. During the last week of May, M&M received a week-long spotlight on the Seasons of Love blog. Here is an article I wrote for it about the spell of love, and here is an excerpt from the book.
On June 2nd, Upon Your Honor got a spotlight and a special reader Q&A during the Book Escape End of My Event and Release Party on Facebook. Also on June 2nd, I finally received the full interview details for the special romance/erotica author interview on the International Book Promotion Blog. Here is the interview. On June 4th, I had an author interview on Mika Jolie’s blog. Five days later, I wrote and posted a love poem on this blog here. On the following day, Mika Jolie was generous enough to interview Gabriel Hill, the main male character of Upon Your Honor, on her blog. On June 16th, I joined a writing blog hop and tagged three other authors. Also on the 16th, I received an author interview on A Lover of Books blog. During the week of the 20th, Upon Your Honor had a spotlight on the Seasons of Love blog. Here is my guest post about writing historical novels and an excerpt from the book for that week.
On June 21st, Summer Solstice Publishing celebrated the Summer Solstice with a big book giveaway and a free offering of a cookbook.
You can still get that cookbook for free here. Also, a surprise interview posted on James McAllister’s site around the same time. Since then, the link became broken, but you can still view it on my blog. Also on June 21st, I did a small promotion for the Love, Honor & Hope Charity event on the I Love Romance Blog.
On June 23rd, the heroes from both Upon Your Return and Upon Your Honor were in the initial running for The Hottest Male in Literature nominations at Inner Goddess. Four days later, the Heiresses in Love Series received a major spotlight on Olga Núñez Miret’s blog.
On July 2nd, character Jessie Anderson from Magick & Moonlight got a character interview on Snow Tigra’s blog. The following day Chloe Waverly, the main female character from Upon Your Honor, was spotlighted in an interview on Mika Jolie’s blog. You can catch chapter one of that book here on ESW, which posted around that time. On July 7th, I wrote a poem titled “The War Inside” about the human condition. Only July 9th, I wrote a love poem title “My World” and it was dedicated to the man I love. On July 14th, I recognized International Author’s Day in a post on Writing in the Modern Age, spotlighting all of our talented authors on the blog.
Also on July 14th, I had an author interview on Alistair Rosie’s blog. A week later, I wrote a post on Writing in the Modern Age with the intent of helping authors who might have been struggling about “what to do next” with their writing or publishing journeys.
On July 23rd, Snow Tigra offered Chloe Waverly a character interview on her blog. On July 28th, I wrote another article for Writing in the Modern Age; this time it was about that pesky fallback of second guessing ourselves. On July 29th, I appeared in a radio interview on The Authors Show. Also on July 29th, I had an author spotlight on the Because Reading site. On July 30th, I got the chance to host a character interview with Minka Greene from Mika Jolie’s The Scale, and it was so much fun!
On August 2nd, I found out that I was in the running for the BTS Red Carpet Review Award. Based on the stellar reviews for Upon Your Return, Upon Your Honor and Magick & Moonlight with their magazine, someone nominated me! So, that was very exciting! On August 3rd, something very cool happened! A reader gave a video review of Haunted, one of my books published under Erica Sutherhome. Such an awesome take on the book and a unique way to do it.
A few days later, Beach Bound Books offered me an author interview, which was so much fun! On August 11th, I participated in the authors’ blog tour, and tagged three other authors in the process. On August 12th, I did a guest post for Belinda Y. Hughes’ blog about the importance of research in writing and some of the methods to utilize.
Three days later, I redesigned the book trailer for Upon Your Return, book one of the Heiresses in Love Series. If you didn’t already know, I design my own book trailers, and I am very satisfied with this one. You can view my other trailers on my Youtube channel here.
On August 21st, I wrote a love poem called “Lost in You”. On August 23rd, I did a guest post on Samantha Holt’s site about imagery and the importance of sensory details in writing. Also on August 23rd, I received some wonderful news. I got a new contract from Solstice for a new paranormal romance titled Second Nature. Exciting! Two days later, Upon Your Honor received an awesome five star review on the Journey with Books blog. On August 27th, I wrote an article for Writing in the Modern Age titled “Know When to Say NO”, about how authors can overextend themselves in writing and promotion.
On September 6th, I wrote a love poem called “Mystified”. Also on September 6th, I finally received the interview Q&A from the special author interview posed to eleven authors from different genres on the International Book Promotion blog. Here is the full interview. On September 8th, I offered a character interview to Carrie Lawson from Linda L. Picl’s Solitary Dreamer, and had a great chat with the author on the I Love Romance Blog. On September 10th, I wrote another love poem titled “A Symbol of Love”. On September 12th, Upon Your Return received a great review on the Journey with Books blog.
On September 16th, Chloe Waverly from Upon Your Honor got a character interview on Mia Darien’s blog. On September 19th, the radio author interview from Urban Nation Radio which aired on September 4th posted to Youtube.
On September 20th, I hosted a character interview with Grace Sullivan from The Gangster’s Kiss, and had a chat with author Ginger Ring on the I Love Romance Blog. On September 27th, Upon Your Honor received an awesome four star review on the YA Lit Chick blog.
On October 2nd, I did a Throwback Thursday post, invoking teaser pics from Upon Your Return. On October 6th, I wrote a fun little poem about my children’s fantasy work in progress, A Little Magick, which is also the sequel to Magick & Moonlight.
On October 8th, I hosted a character interview for Selene Pertunda from Christi Williams’ Getting It Right as well as a brief chat with the author. I wrote a love poem titled “This Is Us” on October 12th. On October 15th, I did a guest post on Jems Books blog about my publishing journey. Three days later, I had an author interview on Juneta Key’s blog. In October, the Solstice Shadows cookbook was released.
On November 9th, I participated in a radio interview with host Bennet Pomerantz. The interview also included Wrenn Simms, Dana Dyer Pierson and Bonnie Paulson.
On November 10th, I hosted a character interview with Beatrice Szabo from Branka Cubrilo’s Fiume - The Lost River plus a chat with author. On November 12th, I found out that I made the week’s TOP 25 on Authors Database. The following day I discovered two new five star reviews for M&M. On November 14th, I participated in the “writing and motivation” blog tour for NaNoWriMo with Webucator. In November, I had an interview here on Books Online Directory. I also was offered an interview on the Books Machine Blog. On November 22nd, I wrote a love poem titled “Everything to Me”. Also on November 22nd, Fiona McVie interviewed me on the Authors Interviews blog. On November 25th, I had the chance to talk to character Amelia Gareth from Amber Sky Forbes’ When Stars Die, as well as chat for a brief time with the author.
December brings us a little closer to the present. On December 2nd, Upon Your Honor received a great five star review on Goodreads. The following day I wrote a love poem titled “Blessed”. On December 4th, Bernard Foong interviewed me On the Harem blog. In December, I also found two amazing reviews by Romance Gal for Magick & Moonlight and Upon Your Honor on Amazon. Second Nature received a feature on Devika Fernando’s blog on December 6th. On December 8th, I wrote an article for Writing in the Modern Age, and it offered helpful tips for fellow authors. Also on December 8th, a couple of early reviews came in for Second Nature, a paranormal romance/urban fantasy book that released through Solstice Shadows Publishing on the same day.
Four days later, I learned that I made it into the TOP 25 authors list on Authors Database for that week.
On December 13th, Second Nature received a promo on Liza O’Connor’s blog complete with an excerpt. Also that day, I finished the cover for A Little Magick, which will be book two of the Magick Series.
On December 17th, I had an author interview on E J Frost’s blog. Also on December 17th, I wrote a guest post regarding what made me start writing in the paranormal genre for Penny Estelle’s blog. On December 19th, the characters from my new release Second Nature, book one of the Blood at First Sight Series, were spotlighted in a dual character interview on Devika Fernando’s blog. On the next day, I got the chance to talk to character Melanie Thomas from Carole McKee’s book Second Chances, and discuss a few points with the author on the I Love Romance Blog. On December 22nd, I learned that the book page for Second Nature on Authors Database made it into a top first page search for "romance books" on Google. So, that was exciting! On December 29th, I did an end-of-the-year post for Writing in the Modern Age, thanking all of our wonderful guest authors. And just a few days ago, I was informed by WordPress that the top post for the year on the I Love Romance Blog was this one with 267 total views. That was fun, and I was very glad because the post was definitely a favorite of mine!
That’s almost everything that happened this year. You can check the links below for more details I might have missed.
I Love Romance Blog (a blog about all things romance including romance novels)
Writing in the Modern Age (a guest author blog with author interviews, guest posts, poetry spotlights and character interviews)
Marie Lavender’s Website
Marie Lavender’s Books! blog (includes author news and updates about my books)
Solstice Winter Holidays cookbook: http://solsticepublishing.com/winter-holidays-cookbook/
Thank you all for being a part of my journey this year! Here’s to a wonderful 2015! :)